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Nursing Schools Near Me | How to Become an RN – Watervliet MI

How to Find the Right Nursing College near Watervliet Michigan

Watervliet MI surgical nurse assisting surgeonSearching for the best nursing program near Watervliet MI may seem like a complex undertaking, particularly if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and measure the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly program or the one that is local to your house is probably not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are a number of key additional factors to check out before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.

Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities

Watervliet MI Neonatal Nurse with babyRegistered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, such as Watervliet MI 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 exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:

  • Providing medications
  • Overseeing patients
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Managing care
  • Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Instructing patients and their families
  • Keeping health records and charts

Nurses with a higher 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 administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degree Options

There is more than one degree option offered 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 earn a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Watervliet MI area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps 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 later earn a higher degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 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 progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
  • Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

When a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to check with the Michigan board of nursing for any state requirements.

LPN Programs

Watervliet MI LPN assisting patientThere are basically two scholastic accreditations available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it should be Michigan approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Certificates

In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Watervliet MI area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in 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 have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for Michigan or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.

What to Ask Nursing Colleges

geriatric nurse with elderly patient in Watervliet MINow that you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Watervliet MI or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Michigan and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, 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. Aside from helping verify that you get a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Watervliet MI for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific 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 a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Michigan or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Michigan school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Watervliet MI 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 programs 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 Watervliet MI medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Watervliet MI hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.

Online Nursing Degrees

woman attending nursing school online in Watervliet MIEnrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend school for many Watervliet MI students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. 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. Therefore if your job and family commitments have left you with very little time to pursue 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 Watervliet MI?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Watervliet Michigan 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.

Watervliet, Michigan

Watervliet is a city in Berrien County in the U.S. state of Michigan. Watervliet is also in the Charter Township of Watervliet. The population was 1,843 at the 2000 census. It is Dutch for "where the waters meet" and it is a rural farming community. As of the 2010 census, the population was 1,735 with 47.9% being males and 52.1% being females. The downtown area has an old-fashioned Main Street with antique stores and gift shops that attract tourists.

As of the census[2] of 2010, there were 1,735 people, 677 households, and 448 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,458.0 inhabitants per square mile (562.9/km2). There were 752 housing units at an average density of 631.9 per square mile (244.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 94.3% White, 1.0% African American, 0.8% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 1.0% from other races, and 2.7% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.9% of the population.

There were 677 households of which 38.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.7% were married couples living together, 14.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 7.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 33.8% were non-families. 28.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.55 and the average family size was 3.11.

Enroll in the Right Nursing College near Watervliet MI

Watervliet MI nursing studentPicking the ideal registered nursing degree program is perhaps the most important step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous factors that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have highlighted within this article, it is essential that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Watervliet MI.

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