Nursing Director appeals for Queenslanders to consider careers as enrolled nurses

14 December 2022

If you're looking for a career change or wondering where to begin your profession' Nursing Director at CQHHS Julie Kahl says to look no further than becoming an enrolled nurse (EN).

'We have a state-wide shortage of enrolled nurses meaning there are great job opportunities across Central Queensland and in much of regional Queensland'' Julie said.

'A lot of focus seems to have been on the registered nurse (RN) role that is attained through a Bachelor of Nursing degree and I think maybe potential students don't understand the difference between the roles'' Julie explained.

'Enrolled nurses are such a valuable member of the healthcare team in Australia and you can become one by doing a Diploma of Nursing through CQU.'

The Diploma of Nursing provides theoretical and practical skills required to become an EN upon registration.

Working under the direct or indirect supervision of an RN' ENs can complete their studies in 18 months' plus 400 hours of work placement.

'Nursing is the most wonderful career'' Julie said.

'You will be well-rewarded for the work you do both emotionally and financially. Ultimately there is nothing better than making a difference to someone's life.'

Right now' ENs are facing a significant retirement risk in the coming years.

'In our health service the retirement risk for ENs is overall about 35 per cent of our ENs. In some locations' this will be higher'' Julie explained.

'The national skill shortage in nursing generally has been further exhibited since the pandemic where the need for more nurses has become more apparent'' she said.

Julie is a Rockhampton-based' Glenmore High School alumnus who also studied at CQUniversity to attain her Bachelor of Nursing degree.

'I can say first-hand that doing nursing in a regional area allows for a great diversity of experience that you would never get in larger centre'' Julie said.

'I had a wonderful experience' had great supportive lecturers and made lifelong friends.'

In addition to her role as Nursing Director - Education and Research at CQHHS' Julie is an Honorary Doctorate and Adjunct Professor of CQUniversity.

'I really have maintained my relationships with CQU since my undergraduate degree. I received a research grant as a novice researcher many years ago which made me have to develop stronger relationships with researchers at the University.

'This developed my passion for research. The relationship has grown from strength-to-strength in my current role and seeing the endless opportunities that we can strengthen collaboratively.'