Nurse educators are very crucial to the field of nursing and are needed at just about every level of practice. They can teach nurses pursuing undergraduate studies as registered nurses (Rn’s) and licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and also those at the advanced level, seeking to play the role of nurse-educators, nurse researchers, practice nurses, future nurse leaders and nurse administrators.
Due to the high demand s for the skills of a nurse-educator, their jobs tend to be very secure. In most cases, they have to cope with their double roles as an educator and a patient care provider. As a nurse-educator one has to implement, evaluate, revise and design different educational nursing programs. They tend to bear job titles such as continuing education specialist, clinical nurse-educator, staff developmental officer and administrative nurse faculty to name a few.
In order to become a nurse-educator for licensed practical nurses or those pursuing an associate or bachelor’s degree, a level of education is required. The individual must first be a licensed registered nurse with experience and hold a master’s degree in nursing. If you are desirous of teaching in the graduate program then a doctoral degree in nursing will be required. In addition to having these degrees, nurse-educators must have specialized degrees in nursing education or another area of specialty in the nursing field. Nurse educators will also need to have a lot of experience and advance training in clinical specialty, along with the nursing certification offered by the national League of nursing as a sign of excellence in the area of a academic nurse-educator.
The salary that a nurse educator can receive will heavily depend on their specialty, location, experience, qualification and role. On average however, the director of a nursing school can receive anywhere from $84,743 to $114,705. A nurse educator coordinator on the other hand may receive on average $71,297. It is clear however that nurse educators do earn much more than Rn’s because of the advanced specialized skill that they possess. Basically they earn a salary that is comparable to that of advance practice nurses, with the added benefit of working more flexible hours and having a workload that is predictable.
It is expected that as the years progress the need for nurses will significantly increase for about the next 8 – 10 years. What this means, is that there will also be an increase in the demand for nurse educators to adequately prepare the new nurses that will be entering the field to fill the demand. In addition, as the years go by, more and more experienced nurse educators will retire, further increasing the demand for nurse educators.
As in any sector, the demand for a particular position is going to affect the salary, job openings, schedule, government grants for academic training and the availability of training schools positively. Based on these reasons along with the fact that nursing is a gratifying professing, the desire to be a nurse educator should be looking like a very enticing and satisfying career.