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Best States for Entry-Level Nursing Jobs

Best States for Entry-Level Nursing Jobs

Jon Wirt and

With so many nursing job openings, it begs the question: Where should you work? NursingLink is committed to providing its members with the most most pertinent career research available. Below is the 10 best places for an entry level nursing job based on salary and job openings.

10 Top Paying States for Medical Assistants

The median salary for Medical Assistants is $13.19

State Hourly Wage
District of Columbia    $16.84
Alaska $16.84
Massachusetts $15.27
Connecticut $15.13
Washington $15.13
New Jersey $14.86
Minnesota $14.69
Oregon $14.62
Colorado $14.41
New Hampshire $14.37

Top 10 States with the Most Average Annual Job Openings for Medical Assistants

A Day in the Life of a...

Ever wonder what it's like to be a nurse midwife? A nurse with a doctorate? Or a holistic nurse? Find out with our A Day in the Life... series!

Go to class with Assistant Professor-CT and Director of Student Services Dr. Ruby Martinez.

Spend the day with Holistic and Rehabilitation Nurse, Barbara Klein-Robuck.

Learn what Certified Hospice & Palliative Care Nurse Maria Gatto does at work.

Deliver babies with Certified Nurse Midwife Eunice (Kitty) Ernst.

Share the struggles of an accelerated BSN nursing student with Erin Downing.

There are, on average, 39,320 annual job openings for Medical Assistants in the U.S.

State Average Annual
Job Openings
California 2,880
Florida 1,830
Ohio 1,050
New York 1,000
Pennsylvania 800
Georgia 770
Michigan 760
New Jersey 700
North Carolina   660
Arizona 550

District of Columbia, Kansas, Texas and Virginia not reporting


• Record patients’ medical history, vital statistics and information such as test results in medical records.

The Nursing Interview Quiz

1. It's interview time! You arrive at your interview:

30 minutes early - you want to show your dedication to the job.
10 minutes early - But you were actually parked and ready to go in 20 minutes ago.
5 minutes late - You don't want to seem too eager.

• Prepare treatment rooms for patient examinations, keeping the rooms neat and clean.

• Interview patients to obtain medical information and measure their vital signs, weight, and height.

• Authorize drug refills and provide prescription information to pharmacies.

• Clean and sterilize instruments and dispose of contaminated supplies.

• Prepare and administer medications as directed by a physician.

• Show patients to examination rooms and prepare them for the physician.


• English Language – Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

• Medicine and Dentistry – Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.

• Customer and Personal Service – Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

• Clerical – Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Kick-Start Your Nursing Career:

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 5 years ago


    I graduated in May 2008 with a Bachelor's in Nursing. I have my License and I am still working in retail because I cannot find a job. I live in New Jersey, so I'm close to work in either PA or NY and I'm willing to get a license in either state because I am that desperate to start my career. Because I have no experience, I am frowned upon. I've even had an interviewer tell me that I wont be able to find a job in NJ and I should just get a NY license. It is very discouraging and frustrating to go through school and not be able to find a job. Especially when you have loans that have already begin to accumulate interest because I cannot afford to pay them on my salary.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 5 years ago


    I FEEL THE SAME WAY! I live in NY and have been applying since March and no one will take me as a new grad! It's really frustrating, I can't understand how they want us to have experience when no one will hire me so that I can gain some. I worked hard for four years to gain my BSN and all this talk about a shortage for nurses.. its really upsetting.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 5 years ago


    This article does not address the "entry level nurse". I live in the Cleveland Ohio area and someone mentioned that new grads are frowned upon. SHE IS RIGHT!!! I have been looking for a job and have over 200 applications out there to every hospital/LTC facility/nursing home/Agency/ home health care place in northern Ohio, THEY ARE NOT HIRING NEW NURSES W/O 1-2 YEARS EXPERIENCE. We have the biggest industry for healthcare and there are no jobs for new grads, this is crazy! I don't believe there is a nursing shortage. I do believe I may have made a mistake becoming a nurse, especially because I have not found a job with the 200 applications and have been unemployed since May 2009. I love taking care of people and nursing is my passion, but right now I feel like a failure or a lepor, not a nurse.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    over 5 years ago


    Where is this list for the 10 best places for entry level nurses? It says below, there is no list. There are lists for the other professions though. Am I blind or is something missing?

  • 100_1796_max50


    almost 6 years ago


    Im going to take my bsn in september in colorado and I am so excited. It kind of frightens me that the shortage is in effect but adn nurses as well as bsn nurses cant find any jobs. The program im going into is a 35 month bsn program and since I have prereqs done it may take me less than 30 months!

  • Picture_226_max50


    almost 6 years ago


    Where I live, CNAs are needed for LTC (High turnover. What else is new?) Fresh RN grads (relative to where you live) w/o patient care experience are frowned upon. At least, this is how it is in my residence. They want RNs with CNA/EMT/phlebotomy/LPN-LVN experience. Theory and clinicals just do not cut it as a starting point (again, where I live...near Boise). Just an FYI...

  • 76_max50


    almost 6 years ago


    I am currently in college going for my ADN in Nursing and will be graduating in 2011. I'm hoping by then I won't have much of a problem finding a job even tho there are 2 hospitals here in Albany, GA but that doesn't stop me from checking other towns for gainful employment as an entry level grad nurse. Wish me luck with my studies..........I'm gonna need it. LOL yeah right.........

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 6 years ago


    I to am a new grad. I graduated in May 2008. I have passed NCLEX, and yet can not get a job!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 6 years ago


    i'm new grad RN BSN and couldt find a job for a year now but still looking

  • Summer___i_sailing_out_to_see_dolphins_padre_2008_max50


    almost 6 years ago


    RNMars - that is NOT true - I know because I have worked for Magnate hospitals and know 1st hand that they hired new grads from ADN programs.

  • 2_1__max50


    almost 6 years ago


    Yes, I agree! I am a New Grad and I am having the hardest time finding a job!

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 6 years ago


    Bannie - I want to be sure I follow your last comment. I understand you as saying an RN with an associate in science - nursing (which we call an ADN in NY) cannot get a job with a Magnate hospital. Is that coeerect? Do I also understand you to say that only those RN's with a bachelor of science degree - nursing (BSN) are hired by Magnate hospitals? Thanks

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 6 years ago


    For the person Wholistic Nurse....yes there is a shortage, BUT you and the other commentor are both correct. In town hospitals in Boston (which is the hub of the east coast) are NOT hiring non BSN RN's, and many have or acquiring magnate status which would ensure no RN would have only an AD....which is me. As well, there are hiring freezes in place in certain Boston hospitals too! It's true.

    The other hand, across the state there are a multitude of jobs that vary from LPN/LVN to RN in all degreed forms. In some cases an LPN may have an easier time finding a job because there is no expectation of an LPN to have a degree, the program generally doesn't call for one, however, many institutions looking specifically for an RN , are looking for that BSN too.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 6 years ago


    I have no idea what part of the East Coast you are talking about RNBSN, but I found your comments to be grossly incorrect on several points. I am a new Nurse on the East Coast in a very economically depressed area and am an LPN with aa 1 year Diploma and have had NO PROBLEM finding a job nor have I heard of any of my Nursing frieids spread all through the country having any problems at all finding jobs and many of them are LPNs as well. The restrictions you mentioned of many hospitals hiring only BSNs would be IMPOSSIBLE to implement with the acute Nursing shortage in this country expected to top over 1,000,000 in less than 10 years of nursing jobs that will need to be filled.

  • Picture_036_max50


    about 6 years ago


    I do Medical Assisting and CNA work and am planning to challenge the LVN certification exam. I am doing this to get into a nursing program faster. Having this training will help me in the long run in nursing. MAs and CNAs are alos the backbone of health care. We are like junior nurses. Take pride if you are one.

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