Are you looking to keep your nursing career on track to success? Are you searching for a way to boost your income as you work and learn? The good news is there is a lot of room for expanding your nursing career. You can get more freedom, access to better pay, and increase job security. Let’s look at some of the great ways to keep your career moving forward.

Explore Travel Contracts

Travel nurses often sign up with healthcare facilities for 3-month stints in different cities. These cities may be experiencing a shortage of nursing professionals. If you’re willing to travel, you can often explore different parts of the country, while making a consistent living. 

Expand Your Education

If you’ve been working as a registered nurse, you’re aware that there are more options for nurses who have a Doctor of Nursing Practice, or DNP degree. You may have checked out a DNP program to evaluate the best way to get this certification.

Consider online options for getting a DNP while you work. If you’re working a busy schedule but want to pursue higher learning, look for a program that you can do with minimal impact on your schedule. Online coursework makes getting a degree more convenient than ever.

A DNP degree enables you to work in many capacities, such as a nurse practitioner or nurse midwife. These positions often open the doors for better pay and more job security. Current research predicts a growth trend; the need for nursing practitioners is expected to grow by 45% between 2019 and 2029. 

Expand Your Patient Population

If you’ve been focusing exclusively on one patient population, consider the larger trends. One trend is an aging population, also called a Silver Tsunami. People are living longer. By 2050, experts estimate that people over 65 in the United States will be over 83.7 million. This is almost two times what it was in 2012.

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As you think about your career, consider working in the aged-care sector. It’s likely you will have many job options as well as business opportunities. Additionally, you’ll have a unique position to build bridges of understanding and connect generations. You will be able to bring your care, energy, and skills to this growing audience.

Expand Your Community

Nurses often find that due to the pressures of work, it’s easy to have a small circle of people in your community. You may know the other nurses on your shift… but not reach out to the other people in your medical community. One of the great advantages of working in a hospital, clinic, or office setting is that you can meet people who have different training. 

If you are seeking to expand your career, increase your community. Talk with the people who you haven’t spoken with yet. Invite a colleague for coffee and get to know the therapists, anesthesiologists, and clinical practitioners you work with. By sharing a personal conversation, you may find there is more to learn about their field, goals, and challenges. Networking is a great way to build relationships – and explore new fields.

Expand Your Openness to Learning

The medical field is constantly evolving, which is why it’s essential to keep learning. If you’re looking to advance your career, consider the areas that you feel are your personal strengths. Explore ways to use your strengths and get even stronger.

For instance, if you’re a tech genius, get comfortable with all the latest technology in your field. Take special courses to learn how to operate new equipment. Check out all the apps and software for tracking diet, fitness, and health status. Get comfortable with hosting virtual health evaluations. 

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Once you boost your skills, find ways to share your newfound knowledge. Your peers are often too busy, or not as tech-savvy. You’ll often find that by following your natural interests you can learn more, and you’ll be able to help your entire team raise their skill level.

Expand Your Openness to Mentorship

Nurses who have the vision of expanding their education often find mentorship a critical piece of success. Talk with your peers to get introductions to other nursing professionals. Ask to meet and do an informational interview with a nurse midwife, if this is an area you’re considering.

Finally, check online to find active mentors in the fields you are seeking to enter. A professional mentor can help with personal experience, networking, and answer your questions. They may even be able to help you with volunteer opportunities to keep your career on track to new heights.