One of the foundations of nursing is the passing of knowledge from experienced nurses to those new to the profession. Over the years, nurse educators have formalized that process, helping develop the next generation of nurses and allowing veteran nurses to expand their skills.

Nurse educators provide a vital service that contributes to the future of healthcare. Their work ensures that nurses have the training and education that leads to the best possible patient outcomes.

Houston Christian University’s Master of Science in Nursing, Education Concentration prepares graduates for jobs as nurse educators. HCU designed the online MSN program for working nurses ready to take the next career step.

The Importance of Nurse Educators

Nurse educators propel the profession forward through the education and training of new nurses and experienced nurses seeking to expand their skills. The goal of nursing education is the continuous improvement of healthcare services.

Nurse educators combine a formal education at the graduate level with clinical expertise, offering guidance and serving as mentors. According to the Nurse Journal, they are “experts in evidence-based practices and committed to continuous research, staying up-to-date on the latest ideas and developments in healthcare and nursing practice.” The journal also notes that nurse educators serve as leaders who direct teams, provide guidance, and exemplify best nursing practices.

While they often work at schools and universities, nurse educators also have positions in hospitals, clinics, and businesses specializing in nurse education. In all settings, nurse educators focus on providing ongoing instruction that integrates the latest nursing strategies, tools, and methods.

Nurse Educator Salaries and Opportunities

Nurse educator salaries are a good indicator of their importance to the healthcare industry and nursing profession. Professionals who commit to earning an online MSN program can expect a salary above what they get as RNs.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that nurse educators’ average annual salary is $82,040. The top 25 percent of nurse educators make more than $98,680. 

Opportunities in the profession depend on location. Texas currently ranks first among all the states in nurse educator employment and is expected to increase as the state continues to grow. Both Houston-Woodlands-Sugar Land and Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington rank in the Top 10 metro areas in the country for employment of nurse educators.

Who Should Consider Becoming a Nurse Educator?

Working as a nurse educator is a unique profession within the nursing field. It attracts those with an affinity for teaching and a desire to improve healthcare services in local communities. One of the biggest pros of becoming a nursing educator is the satisfaction of seeing nursing students succeed.

Nurse educators also enjoy regular hours, making it an attractive career transition for experienced nurses ready to make a change. Experienced nurses who become educators bring expertise to education and the ability to motivate and provide guidance to nurses new to the profession.

The HCU Online MSN Program

For nursing professionals with a desire to help improve the quality of nursing care, an online MSN program makes it more convenient than ever to enter the nurse educator field. Nurses can earn a graduate degree online, allowing them more flexibility in scheduling classwork around busy professional and personal lives.

The HCU online MSN program with a nurse educator concentration promotes professional development in clinical and academic settings. The 100% online program features asynchronous classes, practicum, and role immersion experiences held at healthcare facilities near students’ homes.

Students can work while they learn, completing the program in about 24 months. The program prepares graduates to earn Certified Nurse Educator certification. Also, the Commission on Collegiate Nursing certifies all MSN programs at HCU.

HCU uses a Competency-Based Educational (CBE) format that is student-centric and personalized. Competencies in the program are industry-aligned. HCU focuses on blending online learning with clinical/practicum and preceptor experiences.

Nurses in the HCU program are never on their own. Each student receives real-time, personalized feedback from HCU faculty throughout their course of study.

Earning an MSN with a concentration on nurse education prepares nurses to take on jobs where they directly impact the future of the nursing profession. It’s a perfect fit for nurses ready to use their expertise to help other nurses improve how they deliver patient care.