Career desirability: young people’s perceptions of nursing as a career
The majority of young people make a career choice without regard for salary, and base their decision on interest and enjoyment or a desire to help people. This paper examines students’ perceptions of nursing as a career at a number of key stages in their education decision-making, and how this information influences their subsequent career decision either to choose or to reject nursing. Factors relating to image and status are also explored and some comparisons are made between nursing and young people’s own choice of career, to highlight a number of significant issues. The findings indicate that although young people expressed admiration for the work of nurses, this was rarely matched by an envy of nurses, or a desire to become a nurse themselves.