- The nursing industry is projected for a 22 percent growth between 2008-2018 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, earning it an excellent rating in the job outlook department. Not only is there considerable job security in nursing, but there are also plenty of opportunities for financial success as well. Although the median salary for registered nurses is around $62,450, the highest-paid nurses earn incomes approaching and occasionally surpassing six figures.
Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist
- Working directly with surgeons, anesthesiologists and dentists, a certified registered nurse anesthetist administers anesthesia medications to patients. As the top paid nurses according to Monster with a median salary of roughly $135,000 as of late 2010, these nurses must hold a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, a Registered Nurse license and have one year of experience working as a critical care nurse. They must also successfully complete a Certified Registered Nurse Assistant program, which typically takes anywhere from two to three years.
- Usually employed by private companies, nurse researchers compile, analyze and publish data on various medical products and practices. A BSN degree is required to qualify for the position, while a Master of Science in Nursing or even a doctorate degree is needed for more advanced research careers. These nurses make an average of $95,000 a year, but an experienced researcher easily surpasses $100,000.
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
- Psychiatric nurse practitioners specialize in working with patients afflicted by a mental or psychological disorder. These nurses act as psychiatrists, providing both counseling as well as prescription medication when applicable. They also provide ongoing assessments and written evaluations of a patient's progress, effectively managing the medical history of each client treated. An MSN is the most common degree held by nurses in this field. The median annual income is $95,000.
Certified Nurse Midwife
- A Certified nurse midwife oversees virtually the entire pregnancy process, including family planning advice, prenatal and neonatal care and assistance in the delivery process. Because their profession involves childbirth, hours are very inconsistent and can take place in a variety of locations, ranging from private homes to public clinics to hospitals. Certified nurse midwives must complete all the requirements of a registered nurse and usually have two to four years of experience in obstetrics. Those who meet these extensive qualifications can expect to earn an average of $84,000 annually.
Pediatric Endocrinology Nurse
- Specializing in working with children who suffer from diseases or disorders in the endocrine system, pediatric endocrinology nurses earn an average of $81,000 a year. The duties of these nurses include both providing care and having in-depth discussions with parents regarding the difficulties these disorders will cause in the child's development. Due to the difficult nature of these discussions, strong communication skills are a must in addition to the regular RN requirements.