How to Pick a Nursing College near Forrest Illinois
Choosing the right nursing program near Forrest IL may feel like a complex project, particularly if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Deciding on the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house is undoubtedly not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are various key additional aspects to check out before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, including Forrest IL hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic role is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific 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
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. 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 common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
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 earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Forrest IL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a four 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 want 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 offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After 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 vary from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Illinois board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are essentially two scholastic accreditations offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest period of time, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Illinois approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants 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 many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Forrest IL area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of training required and each state has its own requirements. So it’s essential to make certain that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for Illinois 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 education is state certified. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Forrest IL or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Illinois and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Forrest IL for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified 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 delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, contact the Illinois school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Forrest IL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN schools 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Forrest IL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with Forrest IL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more preferred way to obtain training and attain 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 remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend college for some Forrest IL students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily 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. And so if your work and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Forrest IL?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Forrest Illinois 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.
Forrest was laid out on 11 December 1866 by Israel J. Krack (16 November 1816 – 6 June 1900). Krack was born in Baltimore, Maryland. Both of his parents had come from Germany. He was briefly a teacher, lived in Indiana, and came to Livingston County in 1854. Krack was a farmer, notary public, grain dealer, and in later life an insurance agent. Krack was elected Illinois General Assembly in 1872 and became treasurer of Livingston County in 1878. Krack Street, which parallels the railroad, was named for the town’s founder. When Forrest was established the Toledo Peoria and Western Railroad had already been in operation for almost ten years and therefore, the origin of the town is unlike Fairbury, Chatsworth, Chenoa, Gridley and El Paso, all of which were founded when the railroad was first built. Within a few years of is founding, the people of Forrest did not know the full name of the person for whom the town was named. The author of the 1878 History of Livingston County says only two things about Mr. Forrest: he was a business partner of C. L. Frost, an official of the Toledo, Peoria and Western, and that he had promised to do something for the young village and that promise was “unfulfilled.” The first version of the name was said to be Forestville, spelled with one ‘r,” but Forrest quickly came into use. The Forrest Township was created soon after the village was founded and took its name from the village.
In 1861 or 1862, before the town was platted. Israel J. Krack was operation a grain elevator at the location. Like most towns of the period, the plan of the Original Town of Forrest was centered on a long narrow Depot Grounds, which were on the north side of the tracks. The Plat was a simple Grid of twenty blocks. The first house in Forrest was built by Mr. Krack, who was also the first postmaster and the first station agent. He also laid out many additions to the town. The first Hotel was built by William Umberfield and known as the Forrest House and the first mill was built by R. B. Wilson. The first church was built by the Methodists in 1868. .The town grew rapidly and by 1870 had over 1,000 people. Forrest, like almost every other early town of Central Illinois during this period was built from inexpensive pine lumber brought in by the railroad from Michigan or Wisconsin. In the winter of 1868-1869 much of the business district, including one grain warehouse was burned. It was quickly rebuilt. This was the first on many fires that plagued the new town. In 1890 a particularly devastating blaze destroyed much of down Forrest. Rebuilding was rapid and by 1893 there were five hotels.
The people of Forrest worked to attract a second railroad. At first there were hopes that the Chicago and Paducah Railroad could be induced to construct its tracks through the town, but this road was diverted to nearby Fairbury. Success came when the Wabash Railroad, which was constructed through Forrest in 1880. On 1 May 1880 the first train on the Wabash passed through Forrest. Forrest became an important stopping place on the line of the Wabash linking Chicago and Kansas City. Soon repair shops were built and by the early 1890s over sixty men were employed here. The town became freight shipment point for the Chicago Division of the railroad. In 1894 local workers supported a strike against the Wabash and many of those who had supported the strike lost their jobs to strikebreakers. The Freight division was removed to Decatur. Between 1914 and 1921 it was briefly returned to Forrest. By the 1920s the days of Forrest as a railroad center began to fade. In 1924 the state of Illinois began construction on a paved road that eventually became Route 24.
Select the Right Nursing Degree near Forrest IL
Choosing the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most crucial phase to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of variables that you must take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within 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 health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Forrest IL.
More Awesome Locations in Illinois