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Male nurses increasingly popular in China

(People's Daily Online)    14:57, September 30, 2019

Yu Haobin, a student of GUCM, works as an intern in a hospital in Guangdong. (Photo/

In recent years, the nursing industry in China has witnessed significant growth in the number of male nurses, who not only enjoy good salaries but are also usually “booked up” before graduation by major hospitals, the official WeChat account of China News Service reported on September 29.

The proportion of male students majoring in nursing at Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine (GUCM) has been growing year by year during the recent five years. In 2016, the university only had 18 male nursing majors, who accounted for 13 percent of the university’s nursing majors.

This year, GUCM enrolled 202 new students for the nursing program, among which 56 were male students, thereby representing a 6 percent growth in the proportion of the university’s male nursing majors when compared to the 2018 numbers.

According to credible statistics, the average monthly salary of graduates in undergraduate programs of nursing in GUCM, even starting from their first jobs, is around 7,000 yuan (about $982.9). While the monthly salaries of different hospital departments and levels of positions might vary, some nursing majors would enjoy a monthly salary of more than 10,000 yuan even two years after graduation.

A 100 percent employment rate of graduates from GUCM has been maintained for three years in a row, with male nurses enjoying particular popularity among hospitals, according to Song Yang, vice dean of the School of Nursing at GUCM, adding that most of the graduates of GUCM’s School of Nursing got jobs in large hospitals in the Pearl River Delta.

Wang Yujue, a freshman in the School of Nursing of GUCM, disclosed that nursing was his first choice on his application form for a college major. According to Wang, a young man born in 2000, he has a male relative who is working in the nursing industry and told Wang about the excellent employment situation of the industry.

Another male nursing major in GUCM, Yu Haobin, was born in 1998. Yu is now a senior student who has started his internship in a hospital. According to China’s latest requirements for nursing majors, Yu needs to work in a hospital for 40 weeks before he meets the academic requirements of his program.

Coming from a wealthy family, many people do not understand why Yu has chosen such a major, which they assume is more suitable for women.

Yu said he chose the major because it fits his personality. “I think one needs to be willing to communicate with others, make sure that he/she has the patience it takes to explain things to others and can provide proper help for others. Moreover, I think the job is really suitable for me,” said Yu.

In many scenarios, the jobs of nurses require great physical strength and energy. Therefore, the proportion of male nurses in such hospital departments as operating rooms, orthopedics, and psychiatric hospitals are usually higher than the numbers in other hospital departments.

While female nurses are generally more careful with their work than male nurses, male nurses usually have an edge over female nurses in terms of physical strength, said Song, noting that with the acceleration of the trend towards an aging society, male nurses will witness significant increases in both market demand and salaries in the future.

Compared to the situation in the exchange meetings for parents of freshmen in previous years, this year many parents asked about how to help their children become more confident about the major of nursing they were admitted into, and some parents even asked about doctoral programs for nursing, said Song Lu, director of the student affairs office of GUCM.

In the previous exchange meetings, many parents would ask about how to change majors for their children, disclosed Song Lu, stressing that many parents from the first-tier cities of China have seen the career prospects for male nurses and started making relevant plans for their children. 

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