How to Pick a Nursing School in Wellington Colorado
Searching for the best nursing college near Wellington CO may seem like a challenging undertaking, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and determine the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Going with the least expensive program or the one that is nearest to your residence is most likely not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are many essential additional things to check out before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the Wellington CO medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services in Wellington CO, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse in Wellington CO. And 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 brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by Colorado community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Colorado 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 might desire 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 usually a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Wellington CO 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. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Colorado board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are generally two scholastic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Wellington CO. The one that may be completed in the shortest time period, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Colorado 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 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 obtain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Wellington CO area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and that 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 the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for Colorado to make sure that the training is state approved. 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.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more favored way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree in Colorado. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Wellington CO home, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Colorado and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school relative to Wellington CO and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other schools.
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 get a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Wellington CO.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Wellington CO area school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Colorado or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Colorado school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Wellington CO 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 schools you are looking at 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 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 confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Wellington CO medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Wellington CO area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Select the Right RN School near Wellington CO
Selecting the right registered nursing program is probably the most important phase to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are many variables that you must think about when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed within this content, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Wellington CO.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers typically ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the personal reasons you may have for being a registered nurse, but also what qualities and abilities you have that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, in addition to a significant number of general interview questions, so you must organize some strategies about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
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