How to Pick a Nursing Program in Greenwich New Jersey
Finding the best nursing college near Greenwich NJ may seem like a complex project, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently 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 essential that you research and determine the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their selection solely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least costly school or the one that is nearest to your house is no doubt not the most reliable way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional considerations to check into before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first look at what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the Greenwich NJ medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, 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
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Greenwich NJ, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse in Greenwich NJ. 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 two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by New Jersey community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at New Jersey colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Greenwich NJ or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to check with the New Jersey board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are essentially two scholastic accreditations offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Greenwich NJ. The one that may be finished in the shortest time frame, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be New Jersey 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 properly 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 instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Greenwich NJ area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under 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 required and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for New Jersey to make certain that the education is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more favored way to receive training and attain a nursing degree in New Jersey. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online in your Greenwich NJ home, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and family obligations have left you with little 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 busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Courses
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within New Jersey and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school relative to Greenwich NJ along with the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will consider. 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 selection measures up to the field.
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 organization. Aside from helping verify that you get an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Greenwich NJ.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Greenwich NJ area school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for New Jersey or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, contact the New Jersey school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional Greenwich NJ 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 programs 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Greenwich NJ healthcare 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. Essentially all Greenwich NJ area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN College near Greenwich NJ
Deciding on the ideal registered nursing college is perhaps the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are various factors that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have highlighted in this content, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Greenwich NJ.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What made you decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not just the private reasons you may have for being a nurse, but also what qualities and talents you have that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to organize several approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Because there are several factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you have that make you an excellent nurse and the leading candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down some concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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