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How can I balance a nursing career with young kids?
(found programs from 50 schools)

Jennifer L.W. Fink, RN, BSN is a professional freelance writer with almost a decade of experience as a Registered Nurse. She's worked in both hospitals and nursing homes as a med-surg, geriatric and transplant nurse. Her national publication credits include Parents, RN, Ladies' Home Journal, Nursing Spectrum, Pregnancy and Journal of Christian Nursing.

Nursing is a great career for a parent with young kids! As you probably already know, nursing is an incredibly diverse career option, offering a multitude of professional paths. You can choose to be a school nurse, a certified nurse midwife, a hospice nurse, a diabetes educator, a clinic nurse, a... well, you get the picture. And perhaps more than any other career, nursing offers a wide variety of flexible shifts and scheduling options, meaning that you can choose to work hours that fit your family.

As a nurse, you can work full- or part-time. You can work four-, eight-, ten- or twelve-hour shifts. Sometimes, you can even pick and choose the exact dates and hours you want to work. The options are dizzying: Seven 10-hour shifts in a row followed by seven days off. Weekend-only work. Sporadic, seasonal work (think flu shot clinics). A regular or rotating schedule.

While you're the only one who can decide what will work best for your family and your career, other nurses/parents of young children have found the 3 - 11 pm shift to be an ideal fit. Working second shift allows you to be home with your children during the day and to work the bulk of your hours after your kids are in bed. It also allows you to skimp on daycare costs; if you're lucky enough to have a spouse that works a day-shift job, you may only need a couple hours of childcare a day. The downside, of course, is little to no one-on-one time with your spouse, so if you choose this option, make sure to schedule some date nights for your "days" off.

Of course, the PM shift is not a good choice for parents with school-age children, since most parents would prefer to be available after-school. If your kids are in school, try looking for a day shift job. Again, you may only need an hour or so of childcare per day. School nurse jobs - if you can find one and if school nursing fits into your professional plan - can also be ideal for parents of school-age youngsters.

9-to-5, Monday-through-Friday jobs are not ideal for parents of young kids - which works out beautifully, since Mon.-Fri. jobs are the exception, rather than the norm, in nursing anyway.


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Full List of Online RN-MSN Programs:



American Sentinel University (Aurora, CO)
Program Name: MSN - Case Management, MSN - Management and Organizational Leadership, MSN - Nursing Informatics, Nursing Education, RN to MSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Angelo State University (San Angelo, TX)
Program Name: Clinical Nurse Specialist in Adult Nursing, Nurse Educator Track
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH)
Program Name: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP)
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Clarkson College (Omaha, NE)
Program Name: Adult Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Education, Nursing Health Care Leadership
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
East Carolina University (Greenville, NC)
Program Name: Adult Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Family Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Midwifery, Nursing Education, Nursing Leadership
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Florida State University (Tallahassee, FL)
Program Name: Nurse Educator
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Georgia Regents University (Augusta, GA)
Program Name: Clinical Nurse Leader
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Georgia Southern University (Statesboro, GA)
Program Name: Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Grantham University (Lenexa, KS)
Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing
Jacksonville University (Jacksonville, FL)
Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Leadership in Healthcare Systems, Master of Science in Nursing - Nursing Education
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Kaplan University (New York, NY)
Program Name: RN to MS in Nursing
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Loyola University New Orleans Online (New Orleans, LA)
Program Name: RN to MSN Bridge
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
McKendree University (Lebanon, IL)
Program Name: Nursing Management/Administration
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
McKendree University (Louisville, KY)
Program Name: Nursing Management/Administration
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Metropolitan State University (Saint Paul, MN)
Program Name: Family Nurse Practitioner, Leadership & Management Track, Women’s Health Care Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Middle Tennessee State University (Murfreesboro, TN)
Program Name: Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administration, Nursing Education, Nursing Informatics
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Midwestern State University (Wichita Falls, TX)
Program Name: Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Educator
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Northern Arizona University (Flagstaff, AZ)
Program Name: Nursing - Generalist - MS
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Northwest Nazarene University (Nampa, ID)
Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Oakland University (Rochester, MI)
Program Name: RN to MSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Queens University of Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
Program Name: Clinical Nurse Leader
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Sacred Heart University (Fairfield, CT)
Program Name: MSN - Clinical Nurse Leader
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Samuel Merritt College (Oakland, CA)
Program Name: Case Management (CM)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of Alabama in Huntsville (Huntsville, AL)
Program Name: Leadership in Health Care Systems
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of Louisiana at Lafayette (Lafayette, LA)
Program Name: RN to MSN Program
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of North Carolina at Charlotte (Charlotte, NC)
Program Name: Systems/Population Nursing
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of North Carolina at Wilmington (Wilmington, NC)
Program Name: Family Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of Texas at El Paso (El Paso, TX)
Program Name: Nurse Clinician Educator, RN to MSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (Galveston, TX)
Program Name: Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Educator, Nursing Leadership, Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Program - Gerontological, Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Program - Pediatric
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ)
Program Name: RN to MS in Nursing
University of Delaware (Newark, DE)
Program Name: RN to MSN
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of South Alabama (Mobile, AL)
Program Name: Adult Acute Care NP, Adult Health CNS, Child Health NP, Clinical Nurse Leader, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Community Mental Health CNS, Emergency NP, Executive Nurse Administrator, Family NP, Geropsychiatric (Adult Psych NP/Gerontological NP), Maternal Child Health CNS, Neonatal NP, Nursing Education, Psychiatric/Mental Health NP, Public Health Nurse Administrator, Women’s Health NP
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of Southern Indiana (Evansville, IN)
Program Name: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (ACNP), Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), Nursing Education, Nursing Management and Leadership
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Vanderbilt University (Nashville, TN)
Program Name: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner - ACNP, Adult Nurse Practitioner - ANP, Adult Nurse Practitioner/Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, Forensic Nursing, Health Systems Management, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Informatics, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner - Acute Care, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner - Primary Care, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Western Governors University (Salt Lake City, UT)
Program Name: M.S. Nursing - Education (RN to MSN Option), M.S. Nursing - Leadership and Management (RN to MSN Option)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
WGU Indiana (Indianapolis, IN)
Program Name: M.S. Nursing - Education (RN to MSN Option), M.S. Nursing - Leadership and Management (RN to MSN)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
WGU Washington (Seattle, WA)
Program Name: M.S. Nursing - Education, M.S. Nursing - Leadership and Management (RN to MSN)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Wheeling Jesuit University (Wheeling, WV)
Program Name: Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administration, Nursing Education Specialist
Accreditation: CCNE accredited