January 18, 2024

Nurse Practitioner Named Best Job in Healthcare, STEM, and Top 100 Jobs 2024

Nurse Practitioner Named Best Job in Healthcare, STEM, and Top 100 Jobs 2024

The nurse practitioner profession has been ranked the number one career in three categories in U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Jobs” rankings for 2024. Including its third year holding the top spot for Best Health Care Job. 

These reports are released annually by US News & World Report. 

Popular Online Nurse Practitioner (NP) Programs

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Purdue Global

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Grand Canyon University

GCU's College of Nursing and Health Care Professions has a nearly 35-year tradition of preparing students to fill evolving healthcare roles as highly qualified professionals. GCU offers a full spectrum of nursing degrees, from a pre-licensure BSN degree to a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program.

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Walden University
Walden’s online programs for nursing meet rigorous standards for academic quality and integrity, and the School of Nursing teaching faculty all hold doctorates. With three degree completion options, you can choose a bachelor’s in nursing path that makes sense for your busy, unpredictable schedule.
Accreditation
CCNE
Location
Online
Prerequisite
RN Required

Enrollment: Nationwide, excluding NY, RI and CT. Certain programs have additional state restrictions. Check with Walden for details.

Western Governors University

WGU's award-winning online programs are created to help you succeed while graduating faster and with less debt. WGU is a CCNE accredited, nonprofit university offering nursing bachelor's and master's degrees.

Accreditation
CCNE
Location
Online
Prerequisite
RN Required

Enrollment: Nationwide

 How does the US News & World Report rank jobs? 

US News & World Report reviews and scores jobs across all sectors of the economy based on a variety of factors, including,

  • Median Salary 
  • Unemployment rate 
  • 10-year growth volume 
  • 10-year growth percentage 
  • Future Job Prospects 
  • Stress Level 
  • Work-Life Balance

The US News & World Report team compiles information from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, expert interviews, and literature research to give each profession a score of 0 to 10.

Other healthcare and nursing professions are featured on several of the published lists, including the overall Top 100 Jobs Best Healthcare Jobs , and Best STEM Jobs.

Nurse Practitioner: #1 Best Healthcare Job in America

A combination of high median salary and expected job market growth helped nurse practitioners clinch the number one spot as Best Healthcare Job in America. According to the report, the median Nurse Practitioner salary is $121,610, and there are a projected 118,600 job openings. Nurse Practitioners work in every healthcare setting, and career opportunities are boundless. Its important to note that it does not differentiate between the different types of NPs. 

Nurse Practitioner: #1 100 Best Jobs

Nurse practitioners didn't just top the list of best healthcare jobs; they were also #1 on the overall 100 Best Jobs list. Financial Managers ranked in the second spot and Software Developers ranked third. The median salaries are similar and around the $120,000-$140,000 per year mark. 

Nurse Practitioner: #1 Best STEM Job

In addition to ranking on the top of the list for both Best Healthcare Job and 100 Best Jobs, NPs also snagged the top spot for Best STEM Job. Software Developers ranked second and IT Managers came in third. The median salaries for all three jobs are similar and fall within the $120,000-$140,000 per year mark. 

How To Become a Nurse Practitioner

The nurse practitioner role offers opportunities for a rewarding career improving patient outcomes. The job outlook is very positive, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting 38% employment growth for nurse practitioners over the next decade, much faster than the average for all occupations.

The first step to becoming a nurse practitioner is becoming a registered nurse. You'll do this by enrolling in either an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) or a Bachelor's Degree in Nursing (BSN) program. Once you’ve gained experience as a Registered Nurse you’ll be qualified to enroll in a Nurse Practitioner program to obtain either a Master’s Degree or Doctor Degree. 

If you’re interested in learning more about becoming a Nurse Practitioner (NP), an esteemed Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN), Nurse.org’s guide on becoming a Nurse Practitioner will help. It will guide you through the essential steps, shedding light on the required education—either a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). 

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