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Health Care Provides Stable Career Path, Especially for Women

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Jobs in health care, particularly nursing, have emerged as the new lucrative middle-class career path, and many of these jobs are held by women, according to The New York Times.

Replacing factories with hospitals
Careers in manufacturing and production, which were once overwhelmingly held by men, have largely become automated, downsized or moved overseas. The economy has responded by creating a greater number of jobs in areas that require higher levels of education.

“The days when a very, very substantial share of the work force would be able to make good middle-class incomes from jobs that did not require post-high school training are just not the case anymore,” Francine Blau, Ph.D., an economics professor at Cornell University, told the newspaper.

One area that has increased as manufacturing work fell has been health care. Health care professionals such as nurses are paid significantly more than they were in the past, and with the demand for health care expected to climb significantly as the population grows, ages and becomes more insured, nursing has cemented itself as a solid career move.

The rise of health care careers has also changed the dynamic in many households, according to the Times. While men were once culturally seen as the breadwinners, health care jobs such as nursing have attracted more women than men. Often, women in health care are the highest earners in their households. Columbia professor Jane Waldfogel told The New York Times that health care jobs have become the new middle class go-to for a reliable career.

“We used to think about the men going out with their lunch bucket to their factory, and those were good jobs,” said Waldfogel. “What’s the corresponding job today? It’s in the health care sector.”
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Get started on your nursing degree
One reason why women are finding success in health care while fewer men are is that they’re more willing to adjust their current careers and adapt to what will be most successful, the newspaper explained. This could mean going to college or going back to school to get a nursing degree.

There are a variety of pathways to starting a career as a nurse. If you already have a bachelor’s degree, even if it’s not in nursing, you can get a registered nurse degree in less time. For others, an associate degree or other licenses may be a good option.

The best choice for anyone interested in nursing as a career is to get your Master in Science of Nursing. Not only can getting your master’s degree increase your salary, making health care an even better career path, but it will allow you to specialize in a field that you’re passionate about, such as maternal care.

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