How to Find the Right Nursing School near Benicia California
Locating the right nursing program near Benicia CA may seem like a difficult project, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and assess the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their selection solely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Going with the least costly college or the one that is nearest to your house is no doubt not the best way to select a nursing program. There are various key additional aspects to investigate before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first go over what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, as well as the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as Benicia CA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic role is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Benicia CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are basically two academic accreditations offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it should be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at Benicia CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training required and that each state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Benicia CA or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Benicia CA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, contact the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Benicia CA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN colleges you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Benicia CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Benicia CA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Degrees
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend college for many Benicia CA students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and household obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Benicia CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Benicia California area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Benicia (/bəˈniːʃə/ bə-NEE-shə; bə-NI-shə; Spanish pronunciation: [beˈnisja]) is a waterside city in Solano County, California, located in the North Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area. It served as the state capital for nearly thirteen months from 1853 to 1854. The population was 26,997 at the 2010 census. The city is located along the north bank of the Carquinez Strait. Benicia is just east of Vallejo and across the strait from Martinez. Elizabeth Patterson has served as Mayor of Benicia since 2007.
The town is divided into four areas: the East Side (east of First Street), the West Side (west of First Street), Southampton (north of 780), and the industrial park. Most of the town's older homes are on the east and west sides. Southampton contains primarily single-family housing developments and condominiums, most of which were built between 1970 and 2000. The East Side includes the Benicia Arsenal, a former United States Army armory, which was bought by the city and is now used for a variety of purposes, most notably as live-work spaces for artists. The Arsenal is home to several historic (ca. 1860) landmark buildings such as The Clock Tower, the Camel Barn, and the Jefferson Street Mansion. The industrial park lies to the northeast of the residential areas of the city, and includes the Valero oil refinery. The Benicia State Recreation Area is on the far west edge of the city.
The main retail area in Benicia is First Street, which attracts out-of-town antique and boutique shoppers and those seeking small-town, historic charm. In 1987 Benicia was selected to participate in the California Main Street Program.
Select the Right Nursing College near Benicia CA
Picking the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most critical phase to launching a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you should think about when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have highlighted within this post, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Benicia CA.
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