how to become a military nurse

Annual In-State Tuition: $11,164 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $33,148. A person who is a registered nurse and agrees to accept a commission as an officer may be paid an accession bonus of up to $30,000 for a four-year contract or up to $20,000 for a three-year contract. Im a 30 yo single female who is seriously thinking about joining the army as a nurse. RNs, doctors, lawyers, and other licensed professionals in this pipeline receive a somewhat abridged version of officer candidate training to orient them to the military culture and their role in it as officers. There are also programs that help civilians offset the cost of nursing education in exchange for serving once they graduate. He’s written about military careers for The Balance Careers. There is no one academic path to becoming a nurse in the military. For the right candidate, it is an excellent opportunity for travel and personal and professional growth. Like other expensive out-of-state schools, non-California residents can take advantage of military scholarships to avoid heavy costs. All military RNs are commissioned officers, and so unfortunately, RNs with an associate degree are disqualified. Nurse Practitioners, for example, are able to practice much the same way as doctors: they may run a practice, form medical diagnoses, and prescribe medications. With further experience, specialty training, or education, your pay grade and rank climbs up. Only a registered nurse may assess and treat wounds, review diagnostic tests, and give medications ordered by a physician. Students also get to attend clinicals at some of the top sites in the region. The U.S. military requires that all officers hold a bachelor’s degree, at minimum, so you’ll want to have a BSN , or alternatively, another bachelor’s degree paired with … Anyone who has an undergraduate degree and wants to become a nurse can also enroll in Stony Brook's 12-month accelerated BSN. To advance within this pathway, you should develop your specialty to be competitive in major command or lead agent positions. In areas of active war, military nurses may serve to triage patients or stabilize and treat patients with life-threatening injuries, like wounds from explosives and gunshots. Nurse Practitioners may earn $20,000 per year in bonuses. The benefits of becoming a Nurse in the military are numerous! Most nursing students complete Ohio State's BSN in four years, though the school does offer a part-time format for those who plan on working while earning their degree. Aside from nursing skills and theories, Maryland's BSN also emphasizes interprofessional dialogue, ethics, and personal responsibility -- three traits required of military nurses. BSN students choose either a freshman entry or sophomore transfer entry. Aside from being one of the top schools for undergraduate nurses in the nation, the University of Maryland boasts a prime location on the East Coast near the nation's capital. I chose to join the military because I always wanted to serve my country in a larger capacity. What is the Air Force Nurse Enlisted Commissioning Program? CCRN). You will have to be deployed, many times for lengths varying 6 months to a year. In this track, you must have a solid operational background with an intermingling of staff jobs. The University of Michigan's vast alumni network and high-quality nursing program are two reasons future military nurses should consider enrolling. The Navy, for example, offers a full tuition ride (unless you can find a school that charges over $180,000) to high school students going into a nursing program, or up to $34,000 to current student nurses through their Nurse Candidate Program. Step 1 - You join the Army and complete your initial Soldier or Officer military training. Some Corpsmen operate biomedical equipment, some serve as operating room techs, some are trained to perform dental repairs, some deliver emergency care in the field, and some are assigned clerical duties. There are many things to consider before making the choice to become a military nurse. However, as your seniority increases, flexibility to switch tracks becomes limited. Serving your country in the capacity of a military nurse is a great honor and privilege. The primary difference is that Hospital Corpsmen are enlisted military personnel and military nurses are officers. The immense knowledge and guidance I received was far beyond what I could have expected as a new graduate. Military nurses also have to be prepared to deal with the emotional demands of working in war conditions. I had accepted a new grad position in the Medical/Surgical ICU at the Mayo Clinic. This opportunity came sooner than expected but I was thankful! The United States Army Nurse Corps was established in 1901, and since then nurses have played a pivotal role throughout history as caretakers for the heroic men and women who fight to defend our freedom. Phase 1 in 15 days and Phase 2 in 10 days. These nurses may also work in hospitals or global response centers alongside deployed military personnel during natural disasters or times of war. If Acute Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS) certifications are required for a particular nursing specialty, you should also have these completed as well. Of course, applicants need to meet the program's rigorous admission requirements. Annual In-State Tuition: $10,746 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $38,634. The military is another avenue nurses can take as they build their career. In order to be a military nurse, you’ll need to be a nurse, a soldier, and an officer. For example: All these are great questions to think about and consider in your decision to join the military. There are other, less common pathways as well, such as hospital-affiliated diploma programs (nearly extinct) and doctoral entry programs. However, one of the biggest advantages of becoming a military nurse is the fact that the majority of your education and licensure expenses are covered or reimbursed by the government. After working over a year and a half at Mayo Clinic, I said goodbye to the best hospital foundation I could have had a new graduate. In the military, nurses have many opportunities to advance their rank and assume more responsibilities. The road to becoming a nurse in the Air force was made easier recently. After a long application process and with the help of a recruiter, I found out I was accepted into the Air Force Nurse Corp in the beginning of 2017. All military RNs are commissioned officers, and so unfortunately, RNs with an associate degree are disqualified. Any civilian who earned a bachelor’s degree in nursing and received an RN license in their state can apply for a direct commission. Specifically, a registered nurse is distinguished from others, such as licensed practical nurses and certified nursing assistants, by education level, treatment privileges, and independence. Nursing Officers are required to complete Clinical Phase Training (CPT) to ensure they have the clinical competencies required to deliver nursing in acute care military setting. Copyright © 2020 Full Beaker, Inc | 866-302-3888 | [email protected] | Do Not Sell My Personal Information, Only ACEN or CCNE accredited schools are eligible. The program aims to prepare students for a nursing career in nearly any setting, perfect for anyone considering military nursing. By combining that with resident and distance-learning courses, airmen can earn an associate degree in the CCAF Allied Health Sciences Program.​. While many nurses face stressful conditions, Army nurses must be able to handle extremely stressful conditions and, at times, be able to work in hazardous environments. There is a huge commitment involved with such a decision. Upon enlisting as a Corpsman, you must complete an initial 7-9 week “Boot Camp” and then technical training in medical education based on specific curriculum set by the military. Possible job opportunities in the military include critical care nursing, OBGYN nursing, family nurse practitioner, and public health nursing. In peacetime, military nurses work in a variety of settings providing ambulatory, maternal/child, acute and rehabilitation nursing care. Out-of-state students can save huge by taking advantage of an NROTC scholarship. The length of the preceptorship depends … Becoming a Military Nurse The process to becoming a military nurse may seem daunting, but it ensures you are prepared for this adventurous and important career. Pay increases in the military rely on many factors. Nurses interested in joining the military have a couple of career options: they can either serve as an active duty member of one of the branches of the military or in the reserves. Annual In-State Tuition: $11,214 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $37,914. Military nurses can work in potentially dangerous environments, like foreign war zones, and work under extremely stressful conditions. Becoming a Military Nurse. What Health Technologist and Technician Careers Are There? However, graduates who become military nurses could end up working anywhere. Although still reliant on doctors and other primary care providers to order prescriptions and certain treatments, registered nurses have become collaborative professionals rather than subordinates, with an arsenal of independent actions to help repair, maintain, and promote patients' health. While not a nursing-specific degree, this may help fulfill some of the requirements to earn a BS in nursing, since it includes a variety of liberal arts credits and electives in biology, chemistry, psychology, and pharmacology. High school students may prepare to become a Navy Nurse through the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC). Nurse.org notes that military nurses must have a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) prior to pursuing their military career. Nurses who choose to accept the student loan repayment have the option of having their loans repaid up to a maximum of $40,000 per year. I knew I wanted to be a nurse and I knew that being a nurse in the military would come with great benefits. Hello! Blending science, art, and humanities, Stony Brook University's BSN educates well-rounded nurses who are prepared for any nursing career. Scholarship programs are generally only for civilians aiming for a military career as RNs, but what about those already serving in the military? There is a positive increase in the job outlook in military nursing occurring over the next decade predicted to be between 19% to 26%. If you’re earned an Associates degree in nursing you may be eligible for 3-annual $5,000 bonuses; Bachelors of Science in Nursing degree may earn you 3-annual $10,000 bonuses. In addition to opportunities for continuing education and clinical specialization, you will receive low-cost or no-cost medical, dental and life insurance, generous retirement plan options, housing allowances, food stipends, and 30 days of paid vacation earned annually. Depending on which students are, this program takes 4-5 years to complete. The main attraction is the student loan repayment option. Aside from being one of the best schools in the region, UCLA also puts nursing students on track to earn their nursing license in California, the highest paying state for nurses. As a Certified Nurse Midwife, you’ll provide prenatal, intrapartum, postpartum, and newborn care. You are provided with the tools you need to develop your career and continue training and growing as you become a respected leader in your field. A former Marine Sergeant, Adam Luckwoldt served as Career Planner for 6th Communication Battalion in Brooklyn. Click to learn more about the Air Force Nursing, Click to learn more about Navy and Coast Guard Nursing. The American Council on Education (ACE) recommends college credits for experience and training in the military (except the Air Force, for some reason.) They have the opportunity to travel to different countries as well as different states to live, work, and complete assigned training. The Army National Guard, closely associated with the Army, also recruits nurses. From RN to LPN to Advance Practice Nurses, working with military service members and their families requires commitment and additional competencies. Moving up in rank is the number one factor. After you earn your BSN or advanced degree Officers in this track possess executive skills,  solid command potential, and the appropriate level of Professional Military Education (PME). You must have a high school diploma or equivalent and a score of 146 on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery. Deployments will offer you things such as hazardous pay for the time you are deployed. Typically, BSN degrees take around four years to complete. Students who perform exceptionally well during their first semester can also apply for the Honors Program. Any other specific certifications relative to your nursing specialty are helpful but not required (i.e. If nurses are delegated to work in a hospital or clinic, common responsibilities include patient assessment, passing medications, and working with other healthcare professionals. Any civilian who's earned a bachelor's degree in nursing and received an RN license in their state can apply for a direct commission. The program even offers a rare study abroad program in New Zealand or Australia, designed specifically for nursing students. Unlike other programs on this list, the University of Washington's BSN only takes two years to complete; however, nursing students must first complete 60 semester or 90 quarter credits to apply, making the entire process a four-year journey at minimum. You can choose to specialize in a certain nursing field such as mental health or emergency nursing. Upon becoming a military nurse, you start as an Officer with the lowest pay grade “O-1” (Military Ranks). The number of nurses and nursing students who wish to join the military and serve their country while helping their fellow men has greatly increased. After becoming licensed, UW-Madison notes that graduates end up working in all kinds of settings, including the military. Air Force officials have worked together with medical professionals to design and begin a course program to assist enlisted Servicemembers who desire to become commissioned Nurses in the Air Force. However, holding an M6 after the 68W means you have completed a higher military nursing course and you are required to take the National Council Licensure Examination for a LPN or LVN nursing license in the state you reside in. In addition, Army nurses must have a bachelor's degree in nursing from an accredited school and must be between the ages of 21 and 42. The examples below are based on recommendations on the ACE website, and may vary with the level of education and experience: Airmen enlisted in the Physical Medicine or Aerospace Medical fields may be eligible for credits for their training and experience awarded by the Community College of the Air Force (CCAF). UCLA's BSN program begins during the student's freshman year and takes four years to complete. Regardless, NYU hosts one of the best undergraduate nursing programs in the nation, so graduates can easily transition into a military nursing position. Another great nursing program with a prime location, the University of Virginia's BSN boasts an impressive 94% NCLEX pass rate and 89% employment rate within one year of graduation. An individual must already be a registered nurse or attend a nursing program approved by their state board of nursing and pass the National Council Licensure Exam (NCLEX). With each earned rank, different responsibilities and higher pay grade are awarded. Commissioned Officers in the Army Nurse Corps hold the following ranks: There are three pathways for advancement: Clinical/Operational, Staff, and Executive/Leadership. It will also set you up for lifelong success beyond your time in service. As a military nurse on active duty, you may work overseas, on a ship, or on a base. Rank structure determines pay grade and responsibilities based on your level of experience. The direct commission route requires you to be a registered nurse already. You will also need to be certified in Basic Life Support (BLS). Basic Occupational Qualification Training. On the other hand, some nurses who pursue advanced nursing practice degrees earn even greater autonomy. With plenty of military posts in the region, UW graduates could quickly secure a military nursing position. It is also a prerequisite in order to obtaining a higher nursing degree while in the military or once you become civilian. Because individual nursing pathways and careers take various forms, the top 10 military nurse programs are ranked in no particular order. As a Corpsman, you are required to enlist for five years in the military. Nearly 60% of some military hospitals are staffed with civilian workers. Patients in these settings are commonly military personnel, their families, or any other military employees in local support roles such as diplomats and educators. Become an officer. You are not just a nurse, but you are also an active member of the Armed Forces. To qualify for the Army Nurse Corps, you need a BSN from an accredited program; for Army Reserve, a BSN, an associate degree, or a dipl… Do you have plans to further your education? The Army reserves accepts nurses with an Associates of Science degree, but they must have a BSN degree by the time they’re ready for promotion as Captain. The NROTC offers a Nurse Option scholarship which can cover up to $180,000 of your education. Annual In-State Tuition: $16,343 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $46,097. Our selection panel is made up of 3 Registered Nurses with years of experience and multiple degree: There are numerous programs fit for future military nurses and our panel of nurses ranked them based on factors mentioned in the methodology. Now, nurses who wish to serve their country can be part of the Nurse Corps of any major military branch – Navy, Air Force, Army, and Coast Guard. Becoming a military nurse. The exact requirements for becoming an officer vary from branch to branch, but generally include being at least 18 years old, a United States citizen and completing Officer Candidate School for the Army, Basic Officer Training for the Air Force or Officer Training for the Navy. Annual In-State Tuition: $11,212 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $40,012. Learn about great opportunities for enlisted airmen, officers and health care professionals. By accepting these scholarships, nurses commit to a minimum time commitment of working with the respective military branch. All nursing positions in the military require the nurse to join a branch as an officer. For example, as a military nurse in the Army, you would start as Second Lieutenant, then First Lieutenant, Captain, Major, and so on. But bear in mind the ACE has no authority to actually award credits. The four-year BSN program sets one goal for students: to become exceptional registered nurses. While UCLA sets students up to eventually continue their education, many graduates enjoy good careers as RNs. I have over $90,000 in student loan debt, so you can see how this would help me financially. The Air Force also has a scholarship program for health professionals and each branch may offer college loan repayment incentives. According to Navy's Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (COOL), Corpsmen may be eligible to receive Navy funding to pay for the NCLEX-RN exam. While pursuing a nursing education, it obviously couldn't hurt to get licenses in some of these specialties—including Emergency Medical Technician, Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse, or Certified Nurse Technician—which can provide you with additional experience, earning power, and a vocational safety net should you choose to leave the service and complete your nursing education as a civilian. The field of military nursing is fast-paced and can be emotionally, physically, and intellectually demanding. It's still up to each individual college how much transfer credit you'll receive for your military experience. In the staff track you will branch out to jobs or specialties such as readiness, quality, health promotion, prevention, case management, research, and education/training. The university's BSN emphasizes nursing leadership and the variety of community settings, both of which prepare students for a military nursing career. I had excellent professors that taught me all throughout my undergraduate career. In order to become a military nurse, you will need to obtain a nursing degree and pass the National Council Licensure Examination (NLCEX). In the 20th century, nurse evolved from a subordinate position as the doctor's "handmaiden" into a highly educated, largely autonomous profession. Annual In-State Tuition: $14,444 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $32,114. The Army Nurse Corps recognizes that earning your BSN is an achievement to be proud of and is committed to providing educational opportunities. With a transcript issued by your branch of service, you may be able to knock out some of the common prerequisites for a nursing program, such as general education requirements and anatomy/physiology. In addition to your salary, you will have the option to accept a sign-on bonus or student loan repayment. With your education complete, you can either enroll in an ROTC program, or directly apply via form/application. Are you able to be an active member of team and step up to leadership positions. The American Council on Education (ACE) recommends college credits for experience and training in the military (except the Air Force, for some reason.) Your clinical skills will be kept sharp, your ability to think critically will develop quickly, and your time-management skills will be tested in such a fast-paced environment. You must meet the requirements to be a registered nurse and the standards to be accepted by the military branch you want to become an officer in. Remember, though, that to receive an RN license through this exam, you'll still need to earn your bachelor's degree in nursing through appropriate off-duty education. Located in New York, New York, NYU accepts high school graduates directly into their BSN program, introducing students to nursing topics early on. There are multiple ways to prepare for a career as a Navy Nurse. You’ll also enjoy a reasonable work-life balance that provides plenty of time for family and recreational pursuits. The new program is called the Nurse Enlisted Commission Program, or NECP. Annual In-State Tuition: $11,734 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $42,358. With the exception of a domestic emergency, military flight nurses almost always spend their time on overseas military bases, rescuing and transporting injured soldiers. This fast route to licensure is excellent for current bachelor's degree holders who want to transition into a military nursing position. As a reward for the extreme sacrifice and dedication of military nurses, the career also comes with amazing access to healthcare benefits, education, and the opportunity to rise in rank. It was there at the Mayo Clinic that I began my true nursing career. The main certifications you will need are a Bachelor’s degree and an active RN license from a non-compact state. Unlike the Navy, the Army COOL site doesn't indicate any funding available for medics to take the NCLEX-RN, but there are a number of certifications at less advanced levels of medical care and nursing that may be paid for using the GI Bill. Another NROTC-approved school and perhaps the best overall nursing program in Texas, the University of Texas at Austin's BSN accepts freshman applicants, internal transfer students, and external transfer students. Step 2 - You then complete a short Transition to Military Practice Course, after which you will be assigned to a Joint Hospital Group (JHG) to commence your preceptorship and rotation programme and begin life … As a member of the Army Nurse Corps, you’ll monitor pregnancy progress by listening to fetal heartbeat, take measurements, and estimating fetal size and weight to assure a healthy birth. There are two ways for becoming a military nurse: through direct commission or ROTC commission: 1. What Is It Like to Be a Licensed Practical Nurse? Before joining the military, I was a student at the University of South Carolina Upstate in Spartanburg, SC. I graduated USC Upstate December 15, 2015, studied for the NCLEX and passed in January of 2016. As an enlisted member of the military, pay grade starts lower than military nurses ($1,566.90/month as a new enlistee) with similar opportunities to move up in rank and pay grade based on years of service. Welcome to the United States Air Force. How to Become a Registered Nurse in the Military. Some Eligibility Requirement: Must have a Baccalaureate of Science in Nursing (BSN), or higher. I will be a senior in the fall and become a 2LT upon graduating. With a transcript issued by your branch of service, you may be able to knock out some of the common prerequisites for a nursing program, such as general education requirements and anatomy/physiology. I am choosing to go National Guard so that I can go civilian nursing while at the same time be a military nurse part-time. Like the University of Washington's program, the University of Wisconsin's BSN takes just two years to complete. Annual In-State Tuition: $21,746 Annual Out-of-State Tuition: $56,386. UVA's campus also has one of the best hospitals in the nation, and nursing students get to gain clinical experience there. Since Army nurses are officers, you'll instead be required to attend a Basic Officer Leader Course to acquaint you with military life. Military nurses sign-up for a period of service and can be assigned to any position based on ability and need. Health units also interact with major medical facilities in each region to provide additional clinical skills and currency training for Nurses. Upon arriving at their assigned area, military nurses may check in with their direct supervisors and perform care in a particular setting. Requirements for either active or reserve duty include being between 21 and 47 years old. Squadron or group level staff jobs are an integral part of day-to-day business and overlap into the operational track. Although the military prefers their nurses to have BSN degrees, the Army Reserve accepts nurses with only Associate's Degrees in Nursing, or ADN degrees. Military nurses might work either at home or in foreign countries. You can also choose to enlist in the reserves. Nurses in the military provide nursing care for wounded and ill soldiers wherever they are stationed around the world. A: To become a nurse in the military, you must first complete a nursing degree. 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