Career Explorer

Job Description

Registered nurses (RNs) provide and coordinate patient care, educate patients and the public about various health conditions, and provide advice and emotional support to patients and their family members.

A person in this career:

  • Record patients’ medical histories and symptoms
  • Administer patients’ medicines and treatments
  • Set up plans for patients’ care or contribute to existing plans
  • Observe patients and record the observations
  • Work as part of a team with physicians and other healthcare specialists.
  • Direct and supervise licensed practical nurse and nursing assistants.
  • Consult and collaborate with doctors and other healthcare professionals
  • Operate and monitor medical equipment
  • Help perform diagnostic tests and analyze the results
  • Teach patients and their families how to manage illnesses or injuries
  • Explain what to do at home after treatment

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

  • A lot of time walking, bending, stretching, and standing is required. 
  • Must lift and move patients often
  • Risk of exposure to infectious diseases, and potentially harmful and hazardous drugs and other substances.

Important Qualities to possess

  • Critical-thinking skills
  • Communication skills.
  • Compassion.
  • Detail oriented.
  • Emotional stability.
  • Organizational skills.
  • Physical stamina.

Information from:  Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Registered Nurses, at

Career at a Glance

Salary Range
$56,576 - $79,144

Skills Needed
Strong math and science skills
Enjoys helping and working with people
Strong analytical and problem solving skills
Strong work ethic
Strong communication skills
Teambuilding and leadership skills

Job Duties
Performing physical assessments.
Planning and providing client care, including medications and treatments.
Teaching client’s about their care.
Working with members of the health care team.

Work Locations
Physicians’ offices
Home Healthcare
Long Term Care
Correctional facilities
Military Service