How to Find the Right Nursing College in Lewiston Nebraska
Finding the right nursing school near Lewiston NE may seem like a challenging undertaking, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and determine the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their selection exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least expensive school or the one that is local to your residence is most likely not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are various key additional considerations to check into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Lewiston NE medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services in Lewiston NE, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse in Lewiston NE. 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 2 years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by Nebraska community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Nebraska 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 desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Lewiston NE or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Nebraska board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are principally two academic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Lewiston NE. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Nebraska approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Lewiston NE area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and every state has its own requirements. So it’s crucial to make sure that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Nebraska to make certain that the training course 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.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree in Nebraska. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online in your Lewiston NE home, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, 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. So if your work and household commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Nebraska and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school relative to Lewiston NE along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate 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 in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Lewiston NE.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Lewiston NE area school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Nebraska or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Nebraska school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Lewiston NE 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 unhappy 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 good reputation within the Lewiston NE 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 Lewiston NE area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN Degree near Lewiston NE
Deciding on the ideal registered nursing degree program is potentially the most important phase to launching a new career in the health care field. There are numerous factors that you should think about when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have highlighted within this post, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce 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 Lewiston NE.
Why Did You Desire to Be an RN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you could be asked. One of the things that hiring managers often ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not only the personal reasons you may have for becoming a RN, but also what attributes and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a significant number of typical interview questions, so you should prepare some ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you in addition to the abilities you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the leading candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but take down several concepts and topics that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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