Group of Three Registered Nurses

Giving registered nurses sought-after skills

Nurse managers play an integral role in a well-run medical staff, and the demand for educated nurse managers has risen a staggering 133% from 2010 to 2017 with numbers continuing to rise.
By: Rachel Olszewski

In 2017, data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that the most in-demand jobs included a truck driver, data scientist, software engineer, financial advisor and nurse administrator.

Within each of these fields, there are staggering growth numbers, most in the double digits and above the average growth across the United States. Nurse management is no exception, showing a 133% change from 2010 to 2017 in Nursing Administration programs. According to EMSI Analyst, Labor and Occupational Forecasts, 2018, national trends for healthcare occupations will continue to grow over the next ten years.  

Nurse managers play an integral role in a well-run medical staff. While mainly responsible for overseeing, recruiting, and the retention of nurses, they also hold the responsibility of collaborating with doctors on patient care. They wear many hats, acting as a liaison between the healthcare facility, physician groups, and the nursing staff.

Penn State Wilkes-Barre Continuing Education continues to offer the Nursing Management Certificate Program, a series of four three-credit courses designed to enhance the career opportunities for currently licensed RNs who are working in nursing. 

“This certificate provides RNs in our community the opportunity to set themselves apart from other registered nurses on the career ladder by gaining the tools needed for nurse manager positions,” explains Director of Continuing Education, Jane Ashton. “Effective communication, teamwork, and leadership – these are top skills needed for an effective nurse manager. Our certificate gives students these sought after skills and more.”

Penn State Wilkes-Barre Adjunct Instructor Mary Tencza, MSN, RN, PHRN, and DWP (in progress), teaches the Nursing Management Certificate Program, and has over 20 years of nursing management experience.

“The program will enrich participant’ knowledge of basic health care organizations and administration; collection, analysis and management of nursing data; concepts and techniques for managing nursing personnel; and concepts and techniques for enhancing nursing managerial behaviors,” states Pamela Langdon, Continuing Education Program Associate. “Courses are aligned with the core curriculum and competencies for nurse managers developed by the American Organization of Nurse Executives.  The entire program is sponsored by The Pennsylvania State University College of Nursing.”

Continues Ashton, “What we’ve found, nationally, is that nursing managers earn approximately $30,000 more, annually, depending on certifications and trainings, than the average registered nurse.

"This program provided a range of information that could be applied to any work environment, I was encouraged to learn things about myself and was very inspired to take new challenges and utilize innovative skills as a mentor and a leader,” says Cathy Kurtz, MSN, RN-BC.

Classes are held weekly at the VA Medical Center in Wilkes-Barre. The next course being offered in the upcoming Spring 2019 semester is NURS 432: Nursing Management of Human Resources (3 credits), which covers human resource management and related factors in nursing service organizations.  No formal application to Penn State is required.  Nurses interested in enrolling can contact Penn State Wilkes-Barre Continuing Education at [email protected] or 570-675-9253 for more information.