How to Choose a Nursing College near Lemon Cove California
Searching for the right nursing school near Lemon Cove CA may feel like a complicated endeavor, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least expensive school or the one that is local to your home is probably not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are many key additional factors to investigate before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, namely Lemon Cove CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing 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 administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options 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 two years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Lemon Cove CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as 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) supplies more expansive 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 past 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 usually a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has earned 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 change from state to state, so make sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Training
There are essentially two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at Lemon Cove CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 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 instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training directed and every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with 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 certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
What to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Lemon Cove CA or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school and the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- 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. In addition to helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Lemon Cove 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) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in 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. Look at internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the California school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Lemon Cove CA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased 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 Lemon Cove CA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Lemon Cove CA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Degrees
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more preferred way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend school for many Lemon Cove CA students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, 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. So if your job and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Lemon Cove CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Lemon Cove 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.
Lemon Cove, California
Lemon Cove is located at 36°22′53″N 119°1′33″W / 36.38139°N 119.02583°W / 36.38139; -119.02583 (36.381425, -119.025917) near the confluence of Lime Kiln Creek and the Kaweah River.
There are numerous flora and fauna species in the vicinity of Lemon Cove. The local Lime Kiln Creek watershed contains many wildflowers of numerous taxa; included in these are the yellow mariposa lily, Calochortus luteus.
The 2010 United States Census reported that Lemon Cove had a population of 308. The population density was 369.5 people per square mile (142.7/km²). The racial makeup of Lemon Cove was 261 (84.7%) White, 0 (0.0%) African American, 5 (1.6%) Native American, 3 (1.0%) Asian, 2 (0.6%) Pacific Islander, 12 (3.9%) from other races, and 25 (8.1%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 76 persons (24.7%).
Choose the Right Nursing Program near Lemon Cove CA
Deciding on the right registered nursing college is arguably the most critical first step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are many factors that you should consider when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is important that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Lemon Cove CA.
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