National Student Nurses Day in the United States Date in the current year: May 8, 2024

National Student Nurses Day in the United States National Student Nurses Day in the United States is observed annually on May 8, two days after National Nurses Day. Both observances occur during National Nurse Week.

The history of National Nurses Day and National Student Nurses Day began in 1953, when Dorothy Sutherland of the U. S. Department of Health proposed an observance dedicated to nurses. Although it was not approved, her proposal was the first step towards the establishment of both professional holidays.

In 1982, the American Nurses Association (ANA) designated May 6 as National Nurses Day. A decade later, the week from May 6 (National Nurses Day) to May 12 (International Nurses Day celebrated on Florence Nightingale’s birthday) was designated as National Nurses Week. Finally, in 1997, the ANA Board of Directors designated May 8 as National Student Nurses Day.

The main goals of National Student Nurses Day are to highlight of the achievements of nursing students and to raise awareness of the challenges they face while pursuing a medical career. Nursing is the largest healthcare profession in the U. S.; there are several levels of nursing degrees that have different education requirements:

  • Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA): a 75-hour vocational course.
  • Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)/Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN): a 12-18 month vocational course.
  • Registered Nurse (RN): a Diploma in Nursing, an Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN), an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), an Associate of Applied Science in Nursing (AAS), a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), or a Bachelor in Nursing (BN).
  • Advance Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP): postgraduate education and training, a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or a Master in Nursing (MN).
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), Doctor of Nursing Science (DNS), Doctor of Philosophy (PhD): a doctorate degree in nursing.

To become a registered nurse, one needs to earn a degree from a hospital-based nursing school, which are becoming less and less common in the United States, or from a college-level educational establishment.

It usually takes three years to get a Diploma in Nursing, two to three years to get an associate degree (ASN, AAS or ADN), and four to five years to get a bachelor’s degree (BSN or BN). Upon completing their education, nursing students are required to pass a licensure exam before they can practice. Postgraduate studies to get a master’s degree may take one to three years.

As you can see, becoming a registered nurse is not easy. It takes time, effort and money to obtain a nursing degree and license, and a lot of people do not realize how challenging the process of earning a nursing degree is. National Student Nurses Day is specifically designed to raise awareness of the challenges that nursing students have to face, ranging from the sheer volume of coursework and taxing exams to long shifts in clinical environments.

You don’t have to be a student nurse or any kind of medical professional to observe National Student Nurses Day. It is the perfect occasion to support and encourage a nursing student you know and to raise awareness of National Student Nurses Day by giving student nurses a shout-out on social media with the hashtag #NationalStudentNursesDay.

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National Student Nurses Day in the United States, observances in the U.S., professional observances, nursing students