Tennessee is home to more than 83,000 RNs, according to the state's Department of Finance and Administration. As of 2015, slightly more than half of those RNs had earned a bachelor's degree or higher.
With the Institute of Medicine (now known as the National Academy of Medicine) calling for a more educated workforce — specifically, 80 percent of registered nurses to have BSN degrees by 2020 — it's clear that the Volunteer State needs to do more work to reach that lofty goal.
Tennessee nurses seeking to earn their BSN degree now have a convenient option. The Austin Peay State University online RN to BSN program is designed specifically for ADN- and diploma-prepared nurses who know the challenges faced by prospective nursing students from Memphis to Johnson City.
Convenience of Online Classes
An online class doesn't require a student to go to campus, cutting out commute time, fuel expenses, parking fees and more. Geography no longer limits a student's choices.
The RN to BSN program is ideal for working nurses, as online classes allow students to log on any time of day or night. Whether a student logs on for a short time each day or devotes days off from work to studies, an online class allows far more flexibility than on-campus classes scheduled at set days and times.
An online program is also ideal for working parents. Choosing to attend an on-campus program often means evening or weekend classes that infringe on valuable time with children. Online courses, by contrast, allow parents to determine when they will participate in a class, allowing them to protect their family time.
Perfect for Tennessee Nurses
By working with other nursing schools in Tennessee, APSU has made sure that its online RN to BSN program serves the state's nursing students well. APSU participates in a statewide articulation agreement, developed collaboratively with nurse educators, legislators, stakeholders and the Tennessee Board of Nursing "with a goal of enhancing the educational mobility for RNs."
The agreement guides credit transfer between associate degree and baccalaureate degree programs and admission decisions, eliminating "curricular redundancy," streamlining the application process and promoting collaboration among institutions and educators.
The agreement is just one indication of the state's intent to develop a more educated nursing force. The median yearly salary for a registered nurse in Tennessee is about $60,000 — a figure that can be improved upon by earning a BSN.
The BSN is also a stepping stone to graduate programs, which allow nurses to expand into additional, higher-paying specialties.
If you're interested in expanding your nursing skills and knowledge, look into APSU's online program. In as few as 12 months, you can earn your BSN, to progress toward your career goals as a nurse while moving the state closer to national nursing goals.
Learn more about Austin Peay State University's online RN to BSN program.
Sources:U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Registered Nurses
Have a question or concern about this article? Please contact us.