Nurses have historically been underpaid and undervalued considering the large amount of schooling and training they require. However, with the widespread shortage in the last decade, more people have joined that profession. In 2012, the U.S. Department of Labor predicted that registered nurse (RN) employment would increase by 26 percent from 2010 to 2020. This would put RN employment at a growth rate that's higher than that of all other occupations on average. Even during the "Great Recession," employment of RNs grew by about 182,000 each year.