Data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that there were 78,280 registered nurses working in Massachusetts nursing jobs in May 2007. The average annual wage for registered nurses in Massachusetts at that time was $74,940, which is $36.03 per hour. Across the United States the average annual salary for registered nurses was $62,480, or $30.04 per hour, showing that registered nurses in Massachusetts nursing careers are paid well over the national average, and actually are among the highest paid nurses in the country. Also, when compared to the average annual wage of $49,070 ($23.59 per hour) earned by workers across industries in Massachusetts at the time, it is easy to see why Massachusetts nursing programs are well worth consideration.
Registered nurses are expected to enjoy one of the largest employment growth rates of any industry in the coming years. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the field of registered nursing should experience a 23% growth rate by the year 2016, which would result in an additional 587,000 registered nursing jobs across the nation. This anticipated growth is due to a growing population, the expected rate or retirement of current registered nurses, and an aging population that is living longer and increasing the need for qualified health care professionals. Massachusetts nursing careers are expected to experience a similar rate of growth, making now an exceptional time to consider a Massachusetts nursing program.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics also reports that registered nurses holding at least a bachelor’s degree will experience a greater growth in employment opportunities than their less educated counterparts, and nurses that continue their education to a master or doctorate level will have the greatest growth in job prospects and career advancement. Therefore, prospective nurses considering a Massachusetts nursing program may want to consider programs that confer a bachelor’s degree or higher.