How to Pick a Nursing School near Borrego Springs California
Choosing the right nursing school near Borrego Springs CA may feel like a difficult project, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least costly school or the one that is nearest to your house is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to decide on a nursing program. There are several key additional factors to explore before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first look at what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, including Borrego Springs CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Borrego Springs CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 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 wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are basically two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest time frame, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, 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 adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at Borrego Springs CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Borrego Springs CA or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Borrego Springs 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) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, contact the California school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Borrego Springs CA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN schools you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to finish 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 verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Borrego Springs CA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Borrego Springs CA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Online Nursing Schools
Attending nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend school for many Borrego Springs CA students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of 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 commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Borrego Springs CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Borrego Springs 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.
Borrego Springs, California
Borrego Springs is a census-designated place (CDP) in San Diego County, California. The population was 3,429 at the 2010 census, up from 2,535 at the 2000 census, made up of both seasonal and year-round residents. Borrego Springs is completely surrounded by Anza-Borrego State Park, the largest of California's State Parks.
The village of Borrego Springs is recognized as a designated "international dark sky" settlement, therefore there are no stop lights in Borrego Springs and night time lighting is kept to a minimum to protect the views of the night sky. Borrego Springs is approximately 90 miles (140 km) from downtown San Diego and the lights of the highly developed California coast. Borrego Springs was designated as California's first International Dark-Sky Community by the International Dark-Sky Association. It is a center for public astronomy activities throughout the year.
Borrego Springs has pueblo-style, modern architecture and ranch-style house architecture. A local landmark is the traffic roundabout between the airport and downtown, known as Christmas Circle. The town includes a branch of the San Diego County Library.
Pick the Right Nursing Degree near Borrego Springs CA
Deciding on the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most critical phase to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of variables that you should think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Borrego Springs CA.
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