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Why Parents Excel As Nurse Practitioners

Do you ever wonder what some of the best careers are for working parents? U.S. News & World Report recently ranked nurse practitioner as the No. 1 job in healthcare and the No. 2 job in the U.S. overall.  You don’t need to be a parent to be a great nurse practitioner, but it’s an excellent career option for those who enjoy caring for others like many parents often do. Soft skills like empathy, patience, and active listening are highly valued in the healthcare field.


Here are five reasons why parents should consider becoming nurse practitioners.

1. Parents have caring and listening experience

Parents can quickly spot when their kids aren’t feeling well and have the patience to check on them and administer the right medicine, even if it’s chicken noodle soup. Nurse practitioners need to listen to their patients and sometimes analyze what they’re not saying.


A patient might discuss one set of symptoms, but a shaky hand or difficulty smiling can indicate something else. From active listening to communication and patience, nurse practitioners apply many of the same soft skills that parents use every day.

2. Online classes let students set the pace

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, adults over 25 make up nearly half of all students enrolled in colleges and universities. The Lumina Foundation reports that 25% of undergraduate students are raising children, and about 58% work while enrolled and taking classes.


Online courses make it easier for students to advance their knowledge at any age, and parents are no exception. For example, parents can study after they drop their kids off at school or when younger kids are down for a nap. Programs that offer 100% online coursework allow students to take tests and attend lectures online when it’s convenient for them.

3. Nurse practitioner salaries are competitive

A recent U.S. News & World Report article listed the average salary of an NP as $120,680, with the top 25% earning $129,680. In addition to being ranked high for salary prospects, some nurse practitioners may find flexibility in opportunities to work per diem, or on an “as needed” basis. These types of arrangements can work well for parents who might need to make changes in their schedules based on their child’s needs and school schedule.

4. Nurse practitioners are in demand

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 45.7% employment growth for nurse practitioners between 2021 and 2031. In that period, an estimated 112,700 jobs are projected to become available. That gives those entering the field a lot of flexibility when choosing what cities, states, and school districts they want to live and work in.


The need for nurse practitioners is nationwide, from major trauma and research hospitals to small specialist offices. Demand has expanded to include not only major cities but rural areas as well. Recent trends in the healthcare system have shifted from a primary care model in which physicians treat patients to one in which NPs assess, treat, diagnose, and prescribe medication. The need for nurse practitioners is evident, and the career field is ideal for parents who want to work in an in-demand and emotionally rewarding field.

5. Parents can offer quality advice to parents

Nurse practitioners with children can blend their real-life experiences as parents with their medical knowledge to provide truly top-notch care, whether they choose to specialize in pediatrics, family medicine, or other concentrations. When parents and caregivers who are patients see their medical professionals as a valuable resource, it improves patient-doctor relationships, which may contribute to better overall health outcomes.


If you’re interested in becoming a nurse practitioner, Maryville University offers 100% online coursework and a variety of degree programs. Learn more here.

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