How to Select a Nursing Program near Capitola California
Finding the right nursing college near Capitola CA may seem like a complex project, particularly if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and determine the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your final selection. The fact is, too many prospective students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least costly college or the one that is closest to your residence is probably not the most ideal way to decide on a nursing program. There are several crucial additional factors to investigate before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, such as Capitola CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options offered 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 earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Capitola CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive 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 past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time frame, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Capitola CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training mandated and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s essential to make sure that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Capitola CA or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up 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 organization. Besides helping ensure that you get a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Capitola CA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Capitola 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 programs 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 unhappy 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 good reputation within the Capitola CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with Capitola CA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend college for some Capitola CA students. Regarding tuition, many 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 economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Capitola CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Capitola 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.
The original settlement now known as Capitola grew out of what was then called Soquel Landing. Soquel Landing got its name from a wharf located at the mouth of Soquel Creek. This wharf, which dates back to the 1850s, served as an outlet for the produce and lumber grown in the interior. In 1865, Captain John Pope Davenport, a whaleman at Monterey, moved his operations to be near the wharf. Unable to capture any whales, he moved his operations the following year to Point Año Nuevo.
In 1869, Frederick A. Hihn, who owned the property in the vicinity of the wharf, decided to develop it as a seaside resort. At first he leased the area to Samuel A. Hall and the area became known as Camp Capitola. Most authorities believe that it was Hihn who chose the name of Capitola, but they are unsure as to why he did so. Several possibilities have been asserted, one being that it was named for the heroine of The Hidden Hand, a novel by the popular author E.D.E.N. Southworth, favored by Hall's daughter Lulu. Capitola is known as the oldest beach resort on the West Coast.
Capitola sits on the northeast shore of Monterey Bay. Steep cliffs mark access to several popular beaches, including New Brighton Beach, or drop directly to the rocky shoreline of the bay. Downtown Capitola sits in a depression among the cliffs so that the popular tourist and shopping area leads directly to Capitola Beach. Colorful houses and hotels line the slopes of the town leading back up to the clifftops.
Choose the Right Nursing Program near Capitola CA
Selecting the ideal registered nursing program is perhaps the most crucial phase to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of factors that you need to consider when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Capitola CA.
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