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Photo of a male nurse.
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Do you want a health care career that’s always in high demand? Would you like a challenging job where no day is the same? One where you can really make a difference in people’s lives? If so, think about becoming a nurse. A critical nursing shortage ensures immediate work for new graduates who have the skills and professionalism to take on this challenging but rewarding career.

Registered nurses (RNs) perform tests, give medicine to patients and educate the public under the direction of doctors. Licensed vocational nurses (LVNs) care for patients under the direction of doctors and registered nurses. Most nurses have direct contact with patients, either in a general medical setting or in their specialty area.

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Why is This a Good Career Bet?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, health-related occupations will add the most new jobs to the economy – nearly one-third of the total increase – through 2022. Fourteen of the top 20 fastest-growing jobs listed by America’s Career Infonet are in health care occupations. Job growth in the health care industry reflects the medical needs of a larger older population and more insured people in the U.S. stemming from health care reform.  

Both RNs and LVNs are listed as targeted occupations in Workforce Solutions of Greater Dallas’ top local job openings, with the number-one job in health care being registered nurses, projecting 24,020 job openings this year at an average salary of $33.40 an hour. Licensed practical (or vocational) nurses are projected to have 8,290 job openings at an average salary of $21.85 an hour. 

For jobs requiring at least an associate degree, America’s Career Infonet lists registered nurses as number-one of its top 36 careers with the most job openings through 2022. U.S. News and World Report’s Money Careers’ lists registered nurses as sixth in its top 36 “best health care jobs” through the next decade. 

See all awards and certificates of Nursing programs at colleges of DCCCD.

Career Opportunities

About three out of five nursing jobs are in hospitals, with either inpatient or outpatient departments. Nurses with several specialties have the best career options. One of the highest job growth areas is gerontology, caring for elderly patients.

Nurses work in:

  • Clinics
  • Doctors’ offices
  • Home health care
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing care facilities
  • Rehabilitation centers
  • Schools, from elementary to university level
  • Surgery centers

See more about possible career paths and salary ranges.

Degree and Certificate Options for Nursing Programs

See all awards and certificates of Nursing programs at colleges of DCCCD.