The Nursing Career Process from Application Through the First 2 Years of Employment

The documented current and future shortage of registered nurses (RNs) raises significant concerns about increasing the supply of new graduates from nursing degree programs. Using the best estimates available from nationally representative data, this article describes the attrition process form application to nursing school through the first two years of work.

Key Findings:

  • Most students (76.2%) enrolled in basic RN programs graduate.
  • The majority of RN graduates who pass National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) remain in their first nursing job (73.9%) and nursing (97.9%) for at least two years.
  • Of the 37,208 qualified applicants to baccalaureate programs, 33,321 were enrolled and 3,887 were qualified but not admitted.
  • There were 122,636 qualified applicants to associate degree programs: 85,126 were enrolled; 37,510 qualified applicants were not admitted.

The authors note that room for improvement in the retention of nurses exists, but the issue of getting qualified applicants into programs may require more focus. While the nursing shortage may not be as large as some research estimates, the system needs to focus on qualified applicant acceptance.

The RN Work Project

  1. 1. Newly Licensed RNs' Characteristics, Work Attitudes, and Intentions to Work
  2. 2. Addressing the Complexities of Survey Research
  3. 3. A Comparison of Second-Degree Baccalaureate and Traditional-Baccalaureate New Graduate RNs
  4. 4. Understanding New Registered Nurses' Intent to Stay at Their Jobs
  5. 5. The Nursing Career Process from Application Through the First 2 Years of Employment
  6. 6. What Newly Licensed Registered Nurses Have to Say about Their First Experiences
  7. 7. Moving on, Up, or Out
  8. 8. Generational Differences Among Newly Licensed Registered Nurses
  9. 9. New Nurses Views of Quality Improvement Education
  10. 10. Newly Licensed RNs Describe What They Like Best about Being a Nurse
  11. 11. Early Career RNs' Perceptions of Quality Care in the Hospital Setting
  12. 12. Commuting to Work
  13. 13. State Mandatory Overtime Regulations and Newly Licensed Nurses' Mandatory and Voluntary Overtime and Total Work Hours
  14. 14. Work Environment Factors Other Than Staffing Associated with Nurses' Ratings of Patient Care Quality
  15. 15. The Relative Geographic Immobility of New Registered Nurses Calls for New Strategies to Augment that Workforce
  16. 16. Predictors of Actual Turnover in a National Sample of Newly Licensed Registered Nurses Employed in Hospitals
  17. 17. Charting the Course for Nurses' Achievement of Higher Education Levels
  18. 18. Verbal Abuse From Nurse Colleagues and Work Environment of Early Career Registered Nurses
  19. 19. Early-Career Registered Nurses' Participation in Hospital Quality Improvement Activities
  20. 20. Positive Work Environments of Early-Career Registered Nurses and the Correlation with Physician Verbal Abuse