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How to Work As a Nurse on a Cruise Ship

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Cruise-ship nurses enjoy the benefit of combining their employment with pleasure, serving the cruise ship passengers and employees while sailing the world. There are several options for the nurse, or would-be nurse, who wants to pursue this career track.

Attend an accredited nursing school and obtain the registered nursing degree. If you are not proficient at computers, it would be wise to learn this skill. It would also be helpful to take social science courses to develop your cross-cultural understanding and skills. It would also be wise to develop your people skills.

After graduation, gain at least four years experience working in emergency rooms, intensive-care units and/or critical-care units. (Some cruise lines will require as few as three, while some cruise lines will require at least 10 years experience.)

Gain valid registered nursing registration in the country regions where you may be serving. This could include the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Ireland and the European Union. Each country has its own requirements, but most involve applying for the registration, proving your nursing credentials and paying an application fee.

Research the possible cruise-line companies and find out their requirements. Such cruise lines include Carnival, Commodore Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, Holland America, Princess Cruises and Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. All of these cruise lines have Web sites that list their employment contact information and employment requirements. Read the company's Web site and research the company as you would any potential employer.

Choose which cruise lines you would like to work for. Compile the necessary documentation, update your resume and cover letter and apply to the cruise line as a cruise-ship nurse.

About the Author

Marguerite Lance has been a professional writer for seven years and has written for museums, hospitals, non-profit agencies, governmental agencies and telecommunication companies. Her specialties include nutrition, dietetics and women's and children's health issues. Lance received a Bachelor of Arts in biological anthropology from Idaho State University.

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