How to Enroll In a Nursing College near Lomita California
Locating the right nursing college near Lomita CA may feel like a difficult project, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and assess the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their selection solely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Deciding on the least costly college or the one that is local to your residence is probably not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are various key additional aspects to look into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first look at what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, namely Lomita CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And in order 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 obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Lomita CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four 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 desire 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 normally a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are basically two scholastic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests 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 some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at Lomita CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the course you enroll in not only meets 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 can be other requirements as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Lomita CA or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided in Lomita CA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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 certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for California or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, contact the California school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Lomita 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Lomita CA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with Lomita CA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Degrees
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more preferred way to receive training and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend school for some Lomita CA students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of 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 household responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Lomita CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Lomita 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.
Lomita originally spanned 7 square miles (18 km2). However, over time, much of this area was annexed by neighboring cities. A notable example is "Lomita Fields," now Zamperini Field (the Torrance Municipal Airport).
The 2010 United States Census reported that Lomita had a population of 20,256. The population density was 10,601.3 people per square mile (4,093.2/km²). The racial makeup of Lomita was 11,987 (59.2%) White (43.4% Non-Hispanic White), 1,075 (5.3%) African American, 174 (0.9%) Native American, 2,923 (14.4%) Asian, 140 (0.7%) Pacific Islander, 2,680 (13.2%) from other races, and 1,277 (6.3%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6,652 persons (32.8%).
There were 8,068 households, out of which 2,479 (30.7%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 3,409 (42.3%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 1,160 (14.4%) had a female householder with no husband present, 481 (6.0%) had a male householder with no wife present. There were 491 (6.1%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, and 55 (0.7%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 2,420 households (30.0%) were made up of individuals and 822 (10.2%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49. There were 5,050 families (62.6% of all households); the average family size was 3.12.
Choose the Right Nursing College near Lomita CA
Enrolling in the right registered nursing school is potentially the most critical phase to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are various variables that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this post, it is important that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Lomita CA.
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