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Southwestern Nurses Making a Difference

The year was 1963, two years after the college opened. The college’s first Practical Nursing degree graduate Carole Matson completed her studies. She soon went to work serving her community. She helped deliver babies. She worked with veterans at a hospital during the Vietnam War, and she assisted others in foster care.

Along with Matson, through the years, nearly 9,000 individuals have completed nursing degrees and certificates at Southwestern. Many of these graduates work locally in hospitals and medical clinics. Others in schools, home visit programs, and senior living facilities.

Still, others fan out across the world in careers contributing to the sustainability of their families and improving their communities.

Where can a nursing degree from Southwestern lead you? Wherever you can imagine. Many travel. Like Carole Matson did throughout her life, some serve as nurses helping people in areas of conflict or, in developing countries. Some go into fitness and nutrition fields, disease prevention and surgery. Others go into spiritual wellness, pediatrics and research.

If you want to care for others, if you want a job that pays well and supports a family, a job that challenges you to constantly learn, nursing may be for you.

 

Nursing Career Outlook

 

ANNUAL JOB OPENINGS

  • Southwest Region: 47 on average monthly
  • Oregon: 2,505

2023 MEDIAN ANNUAL WAGE

Southwest Region average: $102,820

  • Starting $81,889
  • Experienced $133,744

Oregon average: $110,710

  • Starting $84,614
  • Experienced $136,240

OTHER

  • Retirement outlook is high-risk on the south Oregon coast with 179 employees age 55 or older retiring soon. 
  • As of November 2023, there are 2,809 job postings for registered nurses in Oregon and 34 for Coos and Curry counties.
  • Employment in the field is expected to grow statewide 8.2% by 2029.

Sources: Oregon Employment Department and Lightcast

 

For more information call or text 541-240-8227; email SWOCCbound@socc.edu.

 

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