How to Find the Right Nursing College near Waynesville Georgia
Selecting the right nursing college near Waynesville GA may feel like a complicated project, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and determine the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their decision solely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is local to your home is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to decide on a nursing program. There are several important additional considerations to investigate before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first go over what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, such as Waynesville GA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring 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 more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for 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 common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees to choose from 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 two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Waynesville GA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies 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 in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a four 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 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 commonly a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example 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) so as to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to check with the Georgia board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time period, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they furnish 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 core curriculum 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 earn a college degree. CNA training can be received at Waynesville GA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training required and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training is state certified. In addition to 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 Colleges
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Waynesville GA or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Georgia and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your selection compares 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. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Waynesville GA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Georgia school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Waynesville GA 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 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 superb reputation within the Waynesville GA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Waynesville GA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain 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 number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend classes for some Waynesville GA students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous 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 responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Waynesville GA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Waynesville 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.
Pick the Right Nursing School near Waynesville GA
Enrolling in the ideal registered nursing college is arguably the most critical step to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are many aspects that you must take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed within this post, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Waynesville GA.
More Awesome Locations in Georgia