Five Alternative Nursing Careers Outside of Bedside Nursing

NursingJune 06, 2023

Not all nurses care for patients at their bedside. In fact, nursing is quite a flexible career, offering many ways to use your skills in non-bedside nursing jobs that draw on special interests you may have. For example, if you love working with kids, you might like working in a school. Other jobs might include more behind-the-scenes advocacy than direct bedside interaction. Here are five non-bedside jobs that draw on your nursing expertise.

School nurse. As a school nurse, your role is to oversee the wellbeing of the school’s students. That includes handling immediate situations like illnesses and common injuries, as well as helping students manage long-term conditions like diabetes or asthma and keeping an eye on their emotional and mental health. If you like working with kids, a school nurse position could be a great choice.   

Nurse navigator. Nurse navigators serve as advocates for patients coping with the complexities of diseases like cancer. The nurse navigator is the trusted middle person who communicates between the patient and medical staff. They explain medical information and care options to the patient and family and ensure they get the care they need, including financial, emotional, and medical.  

Nurse educator. In this role, you teach and mentor the next generation of nurses, whether they’re young people embarking on their first career or older adults retooling for a nursing job. Nurse educators might teach in colleges and universities or handle clinical teaching in a hospital setting. Some jobs might require a graduate degree, while clinicals might require a bachelor’s degree. 

Public health nurse. Public health nursing focuses on population health by educating the public on health issues to prevent disease. PHNs might work for a public health department, community health center, or from a mobile van. For example, a PHN might be employed to educate patients about diabetes or heart health.

Nurse administrator. In this role, you typically work somewhere like a hospital or long-term care facility with the aim of ensuring quality nursing care for patients. Your job is to oversee the nurses, monitor the nurse-to-patient ratio, and advocate for your nursing staff to administrators who are setting budgets and policies. Generally, because this job requires multiple skillsets such as knowledge of business and good communication skills, an administrator role may require extended experience working in different settings and an advanced degree.

Inspired to explore careers in nursing? St. Paul’s School of Nursing is here to help. Visit our website or give us a call at (855) 822-3018 to speak to one of our admissions advisors or to schedule a campus tour.