How to Choose a Nursing College near Wendell Idaho
Selecting the best nursing school near Wendell ID may feel like a formidable endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and determine the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many future students base their decision entirely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Picking the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your residence is most likely not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are several essential additional things to look into before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely Wendell ID hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic role is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level 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 deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
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 receive a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Wendell ID area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is usually a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed 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 job 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.
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. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the Idaho board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Training
There are essentially two academic accreditations available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest amount of time, normally about 1 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 alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it should be Idaho approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at Wendell ID area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from one to three 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 must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of training required and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for Idaho or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Colleges
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Wendell ID or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Idaho and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available in Wendell ID 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) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Idaho or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, check with the Idaho school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Wendell ID 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 colleges 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 dissatisfied 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 favorable reputation within the Wendell ID medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Wendell ID hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more favored way to receive instruction and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend college for some Wendell ID students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental 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. And so if your work and household commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Wendell ID?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Wendell Idaho 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.
As of the census of 2010, there were 2,782 people, 978 households, and 695 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,045.6 inhabitants per square mile (789.8/km2). There were 1,054 housing units at an average density of 775.0 per square mile (299.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 74.2% White, 0.2% African American, 1.4% Native American, 0.3% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 21.9% from other races, and 2.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 35.7% of the population.
There were 978 households of which 40.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.6% were married couples living together, 10.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.6% had a male householder with no wife present, and 28.9% were non-families. 24.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.83 and the average family size was 3.37.
The median age in the city was 31.9 years. 30.6% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.2% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 25.5% were from 25 to 44; 19.7% were from 45 to 64; and 14.2% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 51.1% male and 48.9% female.
Enroll in the Right Nursing School near Wendell ID
Choosing the ideal registered nursing school is perhaps the most critical first step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are many variables that you should take into account when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Wendell ID.
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