As our population ages, career options in healthcare are predicted to expand. Nursing is a resilient and wide-ranging career field with significant opportunities, now and in the future. Here's four reasons why you should consider pursuing a degree and a career in nursing.
(BPT) - As time and technology reshape the workforce, most professionals are not in the position to stick with one career until retirement. Nursing offers relevant, future-focused opportunities for people of all ages and experience levels, from those re-entering the workforce or making a career change, to registered nurses pursuing further education. Below, you’ll find four reasons students are pursuing licensure or a degree in nursing (from RN to BSN and beyond), shared by Dr. Bonnie Stegman of Maryville University.
If you are interested in making a direct impact on the lives of individuals and communities, consider nursing. It’s a rewarding career, according to nurses themselves. Nurses provide personal contact and engagement with patients, which has only become more important in today’s often-hectic healthcare environment. At the same time, nursing is an exciting and expanding field with new areas of focus. You have more options than ever to pursue your interests and work at the cutting edge of healthcare.
2. Wide-ranging opportunities
Nursing often is associated with foundational healthcare settings such as primary care practices, hospitals or nursing homes. However, nursing offers many paths to develop the track that’s right for you. Specialties include areas relevant to our aging population, such as gerontology (focused on elderly patients) and genetics (patients with or at risk of hereditary diseases). You also can specialize in public health, working in nonprofit organizations, community health centers or governmental agencies. And you can build on your experience caring for patients and transition into other areas, serving as an administrator or educator, for example.
The opportunities available within nursing let you pick what best fits your needs and preferences. For example, if family responsibilities mean you need to keep a 9-to-5, Monday-Friday schedule, some primary care or specialty practices can accommodate that. Through telehealth, you can provide patient care and education remotely, potentially creating opportunities across geographic areas and time zones. If you’re open to moving around, you might find work as a traveling nurse to be an interesting — and usually well paid — choice. This flexibility means you can adapt and shift your focus as you move through stages and phases of life.
4. Demand and compensation
Nurses are in high demand nationwide, a trend that shows no sign of slowing. That means you can expect competitive salaries and benefits. You’ll find that employers are getting creative in how they recruit and incentivize new hires. Mercy Children’s Hospital in St. Louis recently tested a seasonal staffing option, where nurses could opt to work a full-time schedule from September to June, then take time off in the summer while retaining their benefits — and a guaranteed job in the fall. Such initiatives represent a valuable offering for anyone with childcare considerations. Other employers are providing financial incentives such as signing bonuses and tuition reimbursement.
Make it happen
Once you decide to pursue your licensure or earn a nursing degree, you have a variety of options. It starts with finding a program that offers a realistic path for your existing schedule and responsibilities.
Online programs typically are designed for flexibility. The online nursing offerings at Maryville University include an RN to BSN program with multiple start dates throughout the year that can be completed 100% online to help students balance work and school. You also can find flexible options in on-campus programs. In addition to programs for full-time and transfer students, Maryville’s on-campus pre-licensure nursing options include a part-time evening and weekend program designed for working adults.
As our population ages, career options in healthcare are predicted to expand. Nursing is a resilient and wide-ranging career field with significant opportunities, now and in the future.
Today’s smartest employers are thinking more creatively about how to attract talented workers and encourage them to stay. Many are partnering with large landlords to include next-level amenities in their workspaces. Here are 5 things progressive employers are focused on to attract and retain the best talent today.
(BPT) - A recent report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that U.S. employment is projected to grow by 8.4 million jobs from 2018 to 2028. At the same time, employers are battling an ultra-competitive job market, in which candidates are being wooed by increased pay and enhanced medical benefits.
Today’s smartest employers are thinking more creatively about how to attract talented workers and encourage them to stay. Many are partnering with large landlords to include next-level amenities in their workspaces.
Today’s employers are focused on:
A well-located workplace is a major selling point for attracting potential employees and retaining existing ones. Employers with a central location, easily accessible by public transportation, already have an advantage. For example, The Legacy Town Center office in Plano, Texas, boasts transit drop-off and pick-up at the building.
For environmentally minded employees who bike to work, secure bike storage is a real plus. The office tower at 201 Spear St. in San Francisco anticipates the needs of the area’s environmentally conscious workforce with bike storage and EV car charging stations, plus easy access to light rail.
Accenture Tower in Chicago sits above Ogilvie Transportation Center, one of the main suburban train stations connecting downtown Chicago to the suburbs, providing direct access to city trains, buses and expressways. The first two levels of the property are composed of 80,000 square feet of retail space, with more than 45 stores and restaurants.
Beyond providing competitive healthcare plans, employers are seeking new ways to encourage and support employees’ health-related activities — a focus that contributes to less absenteeism and greater productivity. For example, Park Place Village in Leawood, Kansas, has massage therapy on-site for all of its tenants.
Many major office owners are adding state-of-the-art fitness centers. 3001 Washington Blvd. in Arlington, Virginia, features workout studios offering barre, yoga and HIIT performance classes in its eight-story, LEED Gold-certified Class A office building. And at Accenture Tower, the building includes a two-level fitness center spanning 14,000 square feet, with a basketball court, group exercise classes and new tenant lounge with air hockey, shuffleboard and wine lockers.
For employees with busy schedules, it can be tough to find enough time in the day to take care of necessary errands. Workers are especially drawn to locales that provide day-to-day services everyone needs without even having to walk outside.
Some office buildings go a step beyond. For businesses at RBC Plaza in Minneapolis, employees can use the U.S. Postal Service, on-site bank, a sundry shop and even a shoe repair/shoe shine service. But it doesn’t stop there. Other services offered in the building include a car wash and detailing service, and private wine lockers. And in the Carillon office tower in Charlotte, North Carolina, there's an on-site daycare for parents.
Beyond location and service-based amenities, today’s employees are increasingly demanding a workplace with a beautiful atmosphere, which often includes access to outdoor spaces. Building designers are taking note, providing more open spaces, skylights and/or atriums for a lighter, more welcoming work environment.
For example, The McEwen Building in the Cool Springs submarket of Nashville, Tennessee, offers employees and visitors an outdoor sitting area complete with a fountain and plush landscaping, while 3003 Washington Blvd. in Arlington, Virginia, has a rooftop terrace with stunning views of Washington, D.C.
5. Employee engagement
With Generation Z workers about to enter the workforce, today’s employers also understand the power of creating engagement within their team, especially among young professionals. Next-level office amenities can increase employee satisfaction and deepen their connection to their employer.
For instance, RBC Plaza in Minneapolis offers a billiards lounge, as well as a cafe and coffee shop, while Preston Commons in Dallas, Texas, and 201 Spear St. in San Francisco both have on-site bars, giving office workers places to unwind and congregate after work.
KBS, one of the largest owners of office buildings in the nation, has partnered with many of America’s companies to support recruitment and retention by buying well-located offices and infusing them with state-of-the-art amenities. To learn more, visit kbs.com.
You spend a good portion of your life at work. You need a job to live and thrive. Over time, you may realize that your current employment is not working for you. While it is nicer to be on vacation than to be at work, no one should dread going to a job. There are several important indicators that it is time for a new career.
There Is No More Opportunity to Grow
It can be frustrating when it seems like your colleagues are advancing while you are sitting still. It may be that you do not have the education to go beyond your current level at work. It may be that management likes you where you are. No matter how hard you try, you remain in the same position. If you keep getting passed up for promotion, it may be time to take your life in a new direction.
Your Workplace Culture Is Toxic
One of the challenges of a workplace is the variety of personalities you must interact with. There will always be difficult people. However, some workplaces have troubling relationship dynamics. There may be cliques or other unhealthy groupings. Poor management may have given more authority to domineering personalities. The place may have developed a culture where gossip and disrespect are tolerated. Your workmates may not be your best friends, but you should be able to work together to accomplish what is best for the company.
Your Unique Skills Are Wasted
Every person brings a different skill set to the table. However, your current position may not use some of the gifts that give you the most fulfillment. If you love to code but spend your days filing paperwork, both you and your company are missing out on your skills. If you love interacting with people but spend all your time in a cubicle, it is natural to be frustrated by your work. Look for a career that uses your unique skills and gifts.
Your Commute Makes You Contemplate Vehicular Homicide
Even if you have a great job, getting to and from work can be a real burden. That time you spend in the car is time you could be doing something more productive. Your commute can also be a source of heavy stress that can have serious long-term health consequences. Your commute gets even more dangerous if you're traveling through town, as intersections are famously prone to car accidents. Unless you have the perfect position at work, consider looking for a job a little closer to home.
You’re Only There for the Paycheck
With the amount of time you spend at work, it should be more fulfilling. You are going to spend years working. While the paycheck is important, you also should be looking to do something that gives you purpose. Think about your personal goals in life. If this job is not working towards those goals, it may be time to look for something else.
Seeking a new career can be a risk. You may not love your current position, but at least you know what you are getting. Instead of settling for a mediocre job, find a career that gives you joy. As the saying goes, “If you are not doing what you love, you are wasting your time.”
A lackadaisical approach to benefits enrollment could leave you short on coverage or end up costing you more than it should. Gathering information and making time to thoroughly consider your options and needs can help ensure you’re getting the best value from your employer’s benefits package. Approach this year’s open enrollment with these tips in mind.
Get the Most Out of Your Benefits Enrollment
(Family Features) A lackadaisical approach to benefits enrollment could leave you short on coverage or end up costing you more than it should. Gathering information and making time to thoroughly consider your options and needs can help ensure you’re getting the best value from your employer’s benefits package.
Approach this year’s open enrollment with these tips from the experts at Colonial Life in mind:
Take life changes into account. A major event like a birth or marriage makes you eligible to adjust your benefits between enrollment periods, but there are many other factors that may affect your coverage needs. For example, you may not bother with dental coverage for a newborn, but once that child has some teeth and is mobile, it’s a good idea to add coverage in the event a fall damages a tooth.
Be conscious of changes. It’s quite common to allow your benefits to renew automatically when the enrollment period rolls around. This can create problems as plans and coverages often change from year to year. Deductible amounts, office visit co-pays and even categories of coverage can shift from one year to the next. Even if there aren’t changes to the coverage, there may be a new pricing structure or additions to coverage that could benefit you.
Dedicate some time. When signing up for benefits for the first time, most people spend at least a little time reviewing each plan option. If you have your premiums deducted from your paycheck automatically, you probably don’t give a lot of thought to your benefits, especially if you’re relatively healthy. Open enrollment is the time to give them more than a passing thought.
A survey by Colonial Life showed 69% of employees spend less than 60 minutes learning about their benefits choices, but that limited time commitment can ultimately affect overall job satisfaction.
“This can be a huge problem for both employees and their employers, because a lack of engagement with the benefits program leads to lower morale and higher turnover,” said Steven Johnson, vice president of enrollment solutions at Colonial Life.
Instead of a cursory flip through the materials, dedicate some time to thoroughly review all the information and make notes about areas you have questions.
Discuss your options. Benefits can be complicated, and there are a lot of terms and jargon in the insurance world that can make it hard to understand exactly what your benefits will cover. That’s why it’s a good idea to sit down with a knowledgeable benefits counselor to discuss your family and personal financial situation.
Technology may be king for many aspects of life, but the survey found just 11% of employees name the internet as the place they turn to learn about benefits during enrollment each year. However, 76% of employees turn to humans including HR professionals, coworkers, family and friends.
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for benefits, but a one-on-one counseling session can help simplify the entire benefits process. A private consultation may help you understand how each benefit election impacts your paycheck, as well as simplifying complex benefit concepts, answering your questions and walking you through the enrollment process.
Learn more about how to maximize your benefits at ColonialLife.com.
To gain a better understanding of your benefits, these definitions from HealthCare.gov can help you identify and recognize some common terms.
Benefits: The health care items or services covered under a health insurance plan.
Coinsurance: The percentage of costs of a covered health care service you pay (20%, for example) after you’ve paid your deductible.
Copayment: A fixed amount ($20, for example) you pay for a covered health care service after you’ve paid your deductible.
Deductible: The amount you pay for covered health care services before your insurance plan starts to pay.
Flexible Spending Account: An arrangement through your employer that lets you pay for out-of-pocket medical expenses with tax-free dollars.
Health Savings Account: A type of savings account that lets you set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualified medical expenses.
Network: The facilities, providers and suppliers your health insurer or plan has contracted with to provide health care services.
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While there are many benefits to earning a degree, not all jobs require that you have gone to college. There are several high-paying careers that offer entry-level opportunities to people without college degrees. Here are four of the best fields to consider when you're looking to earn a solid salary even if you do not have a college degree.
Surprisingly, there are a variety of jobs in the healthcare field that do not require a degree. While most need some type of training or certification to perform, you don't need a college degree to get started. One of the most high-paying job titles is ultrasound technician. Diagnostic medical sonographers earn an average salary of about $70,000 annually. This field also boasts an abundance of opportunity for upward mobility within the field.
Being a truck driver is a fantastic way to see the country while being paid to do so. Many truck driving jobs will require you to have a CDL, which does require certification. A career in truck driving also offers a flexible schedule, which is ideal for when you have other obligations. You can choose the routes that you want to take based on your availability. There is currently a shortage of truck drivers in the U.S., providing job seekers with plenty of opportunity.
Real Estate Agent
As a real estate agent, your primary function is to help clients buy and sell commercial or residential property. Ultimately, this job requires people skills, the ability to research properties, and strong negotiating skills so that you can secure favorable real estate deals for your clients. In addition to getting your real estate license, you will need to complete a training course that meets your state's minimum hours. This job allows you to be your own boss, which means that you can set your own schedule and determine how much work you want to take on.
Computer Support Specialist
In today's increasingly wired world, the demand for computer support specialists is high. This industry encompasses titles such as tech support specialist, help desk technician, IT specialist, and IT consultant. This career pays a median salary of about $50,000 annually. Good candidates for this job include people who enjoy communicating with other people and do not mind spending most of the day on the phone helping to troubleshoot computer issues.
There are myriad career options that do not require you to have a college degree. With the right research and commitment to gaining the skills that you need, you can be well on your way to a high-paying job in a variety of fields.
Read this other article for some more great career ideas!
The global economy couldn't exist without the trucking industry. Cargo planes and ships play their part, but truckers around the world make sure a product makes its way across the country. Truck drivers, sadly, must deal with a job that doesn't always come with thanks. Because of that, the field is becoming less and less populated. The job does come with its dangers, so it is no surprise truckers face tremendous stress. Here are three main reasons why a trucking career can be stressful.
Long Hours Behind the Wheel
Driving to a destination and arriving on time may require spending 10-hour days on the road. Fatigue sets in after a while. Struggling to deal with a lack of sleep brings on worry and anxiety. Sitting in the driver's seat for many hours doesn't always work wonders for how the body feels. Exercising and burning off calories isn't easy, and a trucker's lifestyle becomes sedentary. That's not healthy. According to Pass My Physical, “warning signs of being too tired to drive are: trouble keeping your eyes open, trouble keeping your head up, daydreaming or wandering thoughts, drifting across lanes, drifting of the road or hitting rumble strips, missing signs or exits, frequently yawning or rubbing your eyes, irritability or restlessness.”
Even a 5-day, 40-hour per week driving schedule can become tiresome. The pay might make the long hours worth it, but those hours can seem like an eternity at times.
Accidents Are Less Forgiving
Trucks are colossal moving machines. They weigh tons. In an accident, even a small one, a rig can do a lot of damage. The chances of a fatality during a collision increase immensely. The government imposes regulations to decrease the chances of a fatigue-related accident. According to Heiting & Irwin, “whether a big rig collides with another big rig, a bus, or a recreational vehicle, the results are almost always catastrophic. Driver fatigue is the leading cause of trucking accidents, which is why so many regulations are in place to prevent it.” Federal laws limit the number of hours a driver can work per day and week. Still, other factors besides fatigue contribute to crashes.
Citations Can Ruin a Career
Depending on the terms of his/her employment, a trucker may need a spotless driving record to stay employed. Since he/she is on the road for hours upon hours a day, the chances of making a mistake increases. Assuming the speed limit is higher than it is or not coming to a complete stop when required might mean a hefty ticket. Getting more than one ticket within a specific time period could even lead to a license suspension. According to GetLoaded, “if a truck driver ever gets a ticket, as quickly as possible afterwards, they need to write down every detail, starting from five minutes before the alleged violation to when the officer drove off.” Even the most careful truck driver, one who never receives a ticket, can stress over the thought of receiving one.
If you are a trucker, do what you can to drive safely, adhere to traffic laws, and keep stress levels down. Many people rely on you to continue doing a great job.
To the delight of animal lovers everywhere, awareness of the physical, mental and emotional toll taken by stress is leading progressive employers to create take-your-pet-to-work programs.
(BPT) - If you’ve ever felt tense, anxious or simply unable to relax while performing your job, you’re far from alone.
A recent survey by the American Institute of Stress found 80 percent of U.S. workers across industries have felt stress in the workplace; nearly half say they could use help dealing with it and 42 percent said their co-workers could use some relief.
To the delight of animal lovers everywhere, awareness of the physical, mental and emotional toll taken by stress is leading progressive employers to create take-your-pet-to-work programs. For example, for the past 20 years Purina has encouraged its associates to bring their pets to work, and in a typical week hundreds of dogs and cats enjoy spending time with their owners at the pet food maker’s St. Louis campus.
"Pets bring a wealth of benefits — both physical and emotional — to pet owners and their families, so it's no surprise those same benefits also apply to the workplace and employees," notes Dr. Kurt Venator, Purina's chief veterinary officer. "Whether a pet helps provide a calming sense during a challenging situation or encourages employees to take a walk during their lunch break, here at Purina we experience the benefits of pets at work every day, and want others to as well."
As more and more companies adopt a pets-at-work policy, consider these facts based on a recent Purina report about the many advantages of such programs:
* They can benefit health: Pet-employee interaction has been shown to reduce the employees' blood pressure and cholesterol levels in addition to alleviating anxiety.
* They can improve employee retention: Sixty-three percent of employees in pet-friendly workplaces say they’re very satisfied with their work environments — nearly twice as many as those in other workplaces. In fact, respondents rank the option of bringing pets at work as the second most-valuable employee perk — more valuable than free coffee and parking. Overall, three in five survey participants wish their workplace would institute a pet-friendly policy.
* They can alleviate loneliness: Eight in 10 employees who can bring pets to work say that activity makes them feel more happy, relaxed and sociable. That's partly because talking about pets can be an ice breaker, making it easier for people to approach co-workers and get to know them better.
* They can promote physical activity: Many employees spend breaks and lunchtime playing with their pets or taking them for walks, boosting their own aerobic activity at the same time.
* They can increase pets’ happiness: Rather than staying home waiting for their owners to arrive, pets get to socialize with new people, play with other pets and enjoy more activity. Nearly nine of 10 people in the survey agree that bringing their pets to work strengthens owner-pet bonding.
In light of the proven benefits, Purina encourages other employers to consider allowing pets in the workplace. A toolkit with tips and information is provided at Purina.com.
“Our goal with our report is to continue to raise awareness of the benefits of taking pets to work and to arm employees and employers with insights that can help facilitate pet-friendly environments within their companies,” notes Dr. Venator.
It’s time for America’s workforce to wake up. If you are one of the tens of millions of adults sleeping fewer than seven hours each night — the amount recommended by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) — you are likely jeopardizing performance, increasing accident risks and putting everyone in danger during commutes. Getting enough sleep every night is key to improving productivity, safety and quality of life. Here are some tips to make sleep work for you.
(BPT) - It’s time for America’s workforce to wake up. If you are one of the tens of millions of adults sleeping fewer than seven hours each night — the amount recommended by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) — you are likely jeopardizing performance, increasing accident risks and putting everyone in danger during commutes. Getting enough sleep every night is key to improving productivity, safety and quality of life.
Here are some tips to make sleep work for you.
Don’t burn the midnight oil
Working late nights might impress your boss, but restricting your sleep can lead to trouble making decisions, solving problems, controlling emotions and more, severely affecting your productivity at work. The National Safety Council reports that workers who sleep fewer than six hours per night cost employers six days a year in productivity.
Sleep for safety
Workers who sleep less than six hours per night are also at higher risk for injury, according to the Sleep Research Society. Cognitive and motor performance impairments caused by sleep deprivation can be comparable to drinking alcohol. If you make it a daily priority to recognize the signs of fatigue before, during and after work, and refuse to drive drowsy, you can reduce the risk of serious injury for yourself and others. This may be especially true if you work a job that involves manual labor or heavy machinery.
Strategies for non-traditional work hours
Some of the more high-risk professions involve working irregular hours. Shift workers — who can be nurses, law enforcement officers, emergency responders, transportation operators and more — work overnight or early morning hours with irregular or rotating shifts, causing upheaval in the body’s circadian rhythm and natural sleep/wake cycle. According to the AASM, shift workers may sleep up to four fewer hours per night than those working traditional hours, increasing the risk for injuries, accidents and drowsy driving. The CDC reports that serious long-term health problems are a concern, too.
However, there are ways for shift workers to combat this problematic sleep schedule.
Tips for 'wake time'
* Avoid exposure to sunlight if you need to sleep during the day, and wear sunglasses if you must go outside.
* Use moderate amounts of caffeine in the early part of your shift.
* Use public transportation, rideshare or take a cab, or arrange rides from friends or family after a work shift.
* Take a 20- to 30-minute nap during a work break or before a night shift.
* Get help from a sleep specialist to reinforce your body clock with strategically timed bright light therapy.
Tips for 'sleep time'
* Avoid caffeine and alcohol in the hours before you go to bed.
* Plan for any major changes in your shift schedule by altering your sleep time a few days in advance.
* Try to keep the same schedule on workdays and days off and create an effective “wind down” routine before going to bed.
* Keep your bedroom at a cool temperature, turn off all electronics and only do relaxing activities like reading or journaling.
Use the National Healthy Sleep Awareness Project’s bedtime calculator, which helps you find your ideal bedtime based on when you need to wake up for work — even if that’s in the middle of the night.
Getting at least seven hours of sleep isn’t just a matter of feeling alert for productivity and safety on the job; it’s a necessary component of good health and well-being. If you’re having trouble sleeping, you should talk to your doctor, who may refer you to a board-certified sleep medicine physician at an accredited sleep center for help. For more information go to www.sleepeducation.org.
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