Who wouldn’t jump at the chance to go to nursing school in Hawaii? And the state can use a few good nurses—it’s embroiled in a nursing shortage even more critical than many of the other states, though you might not have imagined it.
The University of Hawaii system provides the bulk of the islands’ nursing education with assistance from local community colleges. The challenges in Hawaii are not unlike those in other hard-hit states: too few nurse educators for the existing programs and a population of working RNs – in ALL facilities—aging and exiting the profession at a far faster rate than those in the pipeline. HI’s population overall is aging faster than that of other states. Combine that with Hawaii’s distance from the mainland U.S. and you have even more nurse staffing problems.
Expect to find a full complement of nursing degree programs here: Practical Nurse, Associates, Bachelors, Masters in various specialties, and post-grad. Also an emphasis in some of the nursing programs is on provision of nursing care to a culturally distinct and often rural community.
But with distressed conditions come opportunity for some student nurses. There has been legislative talk of instituting an aggressive loan repayment program for resident RNs enrolled in a Masters level Nurse Educator program willing to work as nurse educators in the University of Hawaii. However, financially most state coffers are shut on programs like these and further details or indication of Hawaii’s proposal is nowhere to be found.
As a nurse you will have regular use for the resources and services provided by the state board of nursing. The Hawaii Board of Nursing is your go-to source for the following important information:
The Hawaii Nurses Association provides vital professional support for state professional nurses—LPNs, RNs, and CNAs. The organization is most aggressive disseminating Nursing Union information to members and forging a united voice for statewide nursing.
Major hospitals always need nurses, and these are common areas for RNs to search for jobs, but what may be less known are those good employment opportunities elsewhere in Hawaii.