Registered nurses do more than tend to patients and care for the sick; they also know how to throw off the curve. Nurses make, on average, more than $30,000 a year more than the next common occupation, nearly double what secretaries earn.
As you can see from the above chart when nursing is clumped in with the nine other most common occupations, this skews the data, making the average of all workers look much higher than it actually is.
With nurses’ salaries in the mix, the annual mean wage is actually $10,000 more than the highest wage of secretaries and administrative assistants, who are the next highest earners. The disparity between the wages of nurses and the other of the ten most common professions in the United States shows that, while nurses may be a large and not unusual workforce, what they bring home at the end of the day sets them far apart from their peers.