Understanding Nurse Intern Salary

Aspiring nurses often consider internships as a crucial stepping stone towards their career goals. These internships not only provide valuable hands-on experience but also offer a glimpse into the real-world challenges of the nursing profession.

One important aspect that often comes to mind when considering a nurse internship is the salary. In this article, we will delve into the details of nurse intern salaries, exploring the factors that influence them and providing insights into what aspiring nurses can expect in terms of compensation.

What is a Nurse Intern?

A nurse intern is an individual who is pursuing a nursing degree and engages in supervised clinical training in a healthcare setting. This internship allows aspiring nurses to apply their theoretical knowledge in a practical setting, working alongside experienced professionals to gain valuable hands-on experience. Nurse internships typically last for a specific duration, providing interns with the opportunity to develop their skills and gain a deeper understanding of the nursing profession.

Read: Understanding the Distinction: Internship vs. Externship

Factors Influencing Nurse Intern Salary

The salary of a nurse intern can vary based on several factors. Let’s explore some of the key factors that influence nurse intern salaries:

  1. Location: The geographical location of the internship plays a significant role in determining the salary. Internships in metropolitan areas or regions with a higher cost of living tend to offer higher compensation compared to rural areas.
  2. Type of Healthcare Facility: The type of healthcare facility where the internship takes place can impact the salary. Internships in prestigious hospitals or specialized healthcare facilities may offer higher compensation due to the exposure to advanced medical procedures and technologies.
  3. Experience and Education: The level of education and prior experience of the intern can influence the salary. Interns with advanced degrees or relevant experience may command higher compensation.
  4. Duration of the Internship: The length of the internship can also affect the salary. Longer internships may offer higher compensation to interns who commit to a more extended period of training.

What to Expect in Terms of Salary

While nurse intern salaries can vary, it is essential to set realistic expectations. Internships are primarily focused on learning and gaining experience, and the compensation may not be as high as that of a fully licensed nurse. However, internships provide invaluable opportunities to develop skills, network, and enhance employability in the future.

On average, nurse interns can expect to earn between $10 and $20 per hour. This hourly rate may vary depending on the factors mentioned earlier. It is important to note that some internships may offer additional benefits such as health insurance, transportation allowances, or educational reimbursements.

Benefits of Nurse Internships

Although the salary is an important consideration, nurse internships offer numerous benefits beyond monetary compensation:

  • Hands-on Experience: Internships provide aspiring nurses with the opportunity to apply their theoretical knowledge in real-world scenarios, honing their skills and building confidence.
  • Networking Opportunities: Internships allow interns to connect with experienced professionals in the field, expanding their professional network and potentially opening doors to future employment opportunities.
  • Resume Enhancement: Having an internship experience on a resume can make a significant difference when seeking future employment. It showcases a candidate’s dedication, practical skills, and commitment to the nursing profession.
  • Exploration of Specializations: Internships offer interns exposure to various specialties within nursing, helping them identify their areas of interest and passion.


Understanding nurse intern salaries is crucial for aspiring nurses embarking on their career journeys. While the compensation may not be as high as that of fully licensed nurses, internships provide invaluable opportunities for learning, skill development, and professional growth.

By considering the factors that influence nurse intern salaries and setting realistic expectations, aspiring nurses can make informed decisions and maximize the benefits of their internship experiences.

Remember, the true value of a nurse internship lies not only in the salary but also in the knowledge gained, skills developed, and connections made along the way.