How to Select a Nursing School near Swainsboro Georgia
Searching for the best nursing program near Swainsboro GA may seem like a complex undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and assess the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their selection exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least costly college or the one that is closest to your home is most likely not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of important additional considerations to investigate before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely Swainsboro GA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. 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 common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance 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 Swainsboro GA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want 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 normally a two year program after receiving 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) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Georgia board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Training
There are principally two academic accreditations offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest time period, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with supplying 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 pursue, it should be Georgia approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study effectively 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 have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at Swainsboro GA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training course is state approved. In addition to 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.
Questions to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Swainsboro GA or online, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Georgia and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your pick 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping ensure that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Swainsboro GA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain 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 provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the Georgia school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Swainsboro GA 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 looking at 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 verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Swainsboro GA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get 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. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Swainsboro GA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Schools
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more popular way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the free time to attend college for some Swainsboro GA students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more 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. So if your work and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Swainsboro GA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Swainsboro Georgia 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.
Swainsboro is located near the center of Emanuel County at 32°35'37" North, 82°19'56" West (32.593743, -82.332146).U.S. Route 80 passes through the center of the city, and U.S. Route 1 bypasses it to the west. US 80 leads east 36 miles (58 km) to Statesboro and west 36 miles (58 km) to Dublin, while US 1 leads north 62 miles (100 km) to Augusta and south 106 miles (171 km) to Waycross. Interstate 16 is 14 miles (23 km) south of Swainsboro via US 1.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 12.9 square miles (33.5 km2), of which 12.6 square miles (32.6 km2) is land and 0.35 square miles (0.9 km2), or 2.81%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 6,943 people, 2,685 households, and 1,836 families residing in the city. The population density was 560.5 people per square mile (216.4/km²). There were 3,051 housing units at an average density of 246.3 per square mile (95.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 48.06% White, 49.68% African American, 0.14% Native American, 0.35% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 1.22% from other races, and 0.53% from two or more races. 2.03% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Select the Right Nursing College near Swainsboro GA
Deciding on the ideal registered nursing college is arguably the most important first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are many variables that you need to take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this article, it is critical that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Swainsboro GA.
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