This presentation will present the findings from a research project that aimed to answer the question: What factors contribute to men choosing to enter the nursing profession via a fast track graduate entry Masters nursing programme? The aims of the research were to critically explore the concepts ‘why nursing’ and ‘why now’, for these men.
One-on-one interviews were undertaken with seven men who were enrolled in a ‘fast track’ graduate nursing programme.
Themes indicate that mature men were seeking a ‘satisfying career’ which was seen as offering a high probability of employment, coupled with personal fulfilment given that they were currently at a loss – work and career wise. Further, ‘the time was right’ because they felt mature enough to enter nursing. Nursing had not been considered as a career option until they became aware of the fast track option. The graduate programme meant they could build on their undergraduate degrees and would not be seen to have wasted their time with university studies. Moreover, they could study with likeminded students in a programme that wasn’t “nursing-lite”.
Results suggest that graduate entry Masters nursing programme may resonate with mature men who are considering their career choices.
Given that men are more likely to be older when entering nursing, and may already hold a previous academic qualification, it is important that multiple entry points are available and that these recognise previous qualifications and experience.
Key words: Second degree graduate entry nursing, men, thematic analysis