High School Students

What do nurses do?

Registered nurses are health care professionals who diagnose and treat patients. They also work collaboratively with other health care professionals to deliver holistic care. Common responsibilities include:

  • Taking health histories
  • Performing physical exams and diagnostic tests
  • Administering treatments and medications
  • Creating and implementing plans of care
  • Providing health education and counseling
  • Coordinating care
  • Directing and supervising care performed by other health care professionals
  • Engaging in quality improvement

Nurses work in a variety of settings, from hospitals and doctor’s offices to nursing homes and schools. Some nurses specialize in working with specific types of patients, such as burn victims or cancer patients, or in certain settings, such as the emergency department or the intensive care unit. Others focus on public health, educating people about preventive care or how to manage chronic conditions.

No matter where they work or what their specialty is, nurses play an important role in helping people get and stay healthy.

Learn more about what nurses do


High school students, please note:

Admission to Indiana University’s Traditional BSN Program is extremely competitive. The program itself is very demanding and time-intensive, involving long hours of study as you learn the skills you need to be an outstanding nurse.

Our Traditional BSN program is also very different from other IU schools in how we admit students and in how you apply.

For this reason, you’ll want to sign up for one of our virtual academic sessions. At the session, we’ll go over the details of the program with you, and answer any questions you have. That way you and your family can decide, up front, whether our Traditional BSN Program is the right program for you!

Sign up now

The number of job openings for registered nurses is expected to increase by 16 percent from 2014 to 2024, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Is nursing right for you?

A School of Nursing faculty member gives a demonstration to a class.

Before you decide to pursue a career in nursing, it’s important to learn as much as you can about what it’s like to be a nurse. Nursing is a rewarding profession, but it can be physically, mentally, and emotionally demanding. Nurses must be compassionate, responsible, and adaptable. They need to be good communicators and critical thinkers. They often work long hours and have to solve problems and make important decisions in stressful situations.

Shadow a nurse

If you’re interested in becoming a nurse, a great way to find out what it’s really like is to shadow a nurse on the job.

If you live in the Bloomington area, you can take advantage of IU Health Bloomington Hospital’s job shadowing program, which provides opportunities for high school students to shadow health care professionals, including nurses. Many other hospitals and health care facilities offer job shadowing programs for high schoolers, so check with health care providers in your area to find out about opportunities near you.

Study nursing at Indiana University

The Indiana University School of Nursing offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program. There is no direct admission to the School of Nursing; you must be admitted to IU as a degree-seeking student and complete prenursing coursework before you apply to the BSN program. The first time you can apply to the program is during the spring semester of your freshman year at IU.

As a student in the BSN program, you’ll prepare for a career as a professional nurse. You’ll take courses in science and math. You’ll learn the fundamental clinical skills of the nursing profession in the school’s state-of-the-art interactive learning facilities. And you’ll get hands-on experience caring for patients with the school’s clinical practice partners.