Nursing Schools Near Me | How to Become an RN – Empire CA

How to Enroll In a Nursing Program near Empire California

Empire CA surgical nurse assisting surgeonSearching for the right nursing college near Empire CA may feel like a complex project, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least costly program or the one that is closest to your residence is no doubt not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are several essential additional things to check into before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Functions

Empire CA Neonatal Nurse with babyRegistered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as Empire CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Overseeing patients
  • Conducting physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Informing patients and their families
  • Maintaining health records and charts

Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees

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 receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Empire CA area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a more advanced 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 qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might 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 typically a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

Once a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can 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

Empire CA LPN assisting patientThere are basically two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more in-depth 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 warrants that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Courses

In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at Empire CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration 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 mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction required and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies 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 sure that the training course is state certified. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.

What to Ask Nursing Schools

geriatric nurse with elderly patient in Empire CANow that you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Empire CA or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many 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 earlier pointed out, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other programs.

  • 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 recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping verify that you get an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Empire CA for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary 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 specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each 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 Empire 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Empire CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Empire CA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.

Online Nursing Degrees

woman attending nursing school online in Empire CAAttending nursing programs online is becoming a more popular way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the free time to attend school for many Empire CA students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. 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 commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.

Attending a Nursing School near Empire CA?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Empire 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.

Inland Empire

The Inland Empire (IE) is a metropolitan area and region in Southern California. The term may be used to refer to the cities of western Riverside County and southwestern San Bernardino County. A broader definition will include eastern Los Angeles County cities in the Pomona Valley, and sometimes the desert communities of Palm Springs and the rest of the Coachella Valley; a much larger definition includes all of San Bernardino and Riverside counties.[2]

The U.S. Census Bureau-defined Riverside–San Bernardino–Ontario metropolitan area, which comprises Riverside County and San Bernardino County, California, covers more than 27,000 sq mi (70,000 km2) and has a population of approximately 4 million.[3] Most of the area's population is located in southwestern San Bernardino County and northwestern Riverside County. At the end of the nineteenth century, the Inland Empire was a major center of agriculture, including citrus, dairy, and winemaking. However, agriculture declined through the twentieth century, and since the 1970s a rapidly growing population, fed by families migrating in search of affordable housing, has led to more residential, industrial, and commercial development.

The term "Inland Empire" is documented to have been used by the Riverside Enterprise newspaper (now The Press-Enterprise) as early as April 1914.[4] Developers in the area likely introduced the term to promote the region and to highlight the area's unique features. The "Inland" part of the name is derived from the region's location, about 60 miles (97 km) inland from Los Angeles and the Pacific Ocean. Originally, this area was called the Orange Empire due to the acres of citrus groves that once extended from Pasadena to Redlands during the first half of the twentieth century.[2][5] The Inland Empire is a nebulous region, but is defined as the cities of western Riverside County and the cities of southwestern San Bernardino County; adjacent to the Los Angeles metropolitan area. A generally broader definition will include the desert community of Palm Springs and its surrounding area, and a much larger definition will include all of San Bernardino and Riverside counties.[2]

Select the Right Nursing Program near Empire CA

Empire CA nursing studentSelecting the ideal registered nursing college is potentially the most important first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are various factors that you must take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Empire CA.

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