Nurses gravitate to Oregon because of the high salary opportunities found here. In 2013, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics announced Oregon as the fifth highest paying state for registered nurses in the country. That year, registered nurses earned an average annual salary of $80,440 and an average hour wage of $38.67.
Yet, nurses can earn exceedingly higher-than-average salaries in Oregon by earning a BSN degree. This financial incentive is causing scores of licensed and aspiring nurses to enroll in baccalaureate nursing programs found in locations like Portland, Ashland, Klamath Falls, La Grande, Monmouth and Newborn.
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing reported there were 2,343 students enrolled in BSN nursing programs in Oregon in 2013. In that same year, the state graduated 1,111 students from local baccalaureate and graduate level nursing programs.
In 2014, the Oregon Center of Nursing estimated that 39,454 registered nurses were working statewide. At that time, the distribution of the various degree options among this workforce was as follows:
- Associate Degree in Nursing: 47%
- Baccalaureate Degree in Nursing: 43%
- Master/Doctoral Degree in Nursing: 4%
BSN Salaries Surpass ADN Salaries in Oregon
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, nurses typically need a baccalaureate degree or higher in order to work in teaching, consultation, research, and administrative positions. This ability to work in different facets of the nursing field makes BSN nurses more valuable to employers, which often equates to higher salaries.
In 2013, the federal government found that nurses entering the field in Oregon with an ADN earned an average annual salary of $67,900 and an average hourly wage of $32.64. However, nurses that continued schooling to acquire a BSN earned an average annual salary of $92,100 and an average hourly wage of $44.29.
Regional Salary Averages for BSN Nurses in Oregon
Registered nurses with BSN degrees are consistently earning within the 75th and 90th wage percentiles among all RNs. In 2013, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics produced the following data to show salaries among BSN educated registered nurses working in both metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas of Oregon: