How to Enroll In a Nursing College in Lowell Oregon
Locating the right nursing college near Lowell OR may seem like a formidable undertaking, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and determine the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Deciding on the least costly college or the one that is local to your home is probably not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are various key additional considerations to check out before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Lowell OR medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, including hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing 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 responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Lowell OR, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse in Lowell OR. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program made available by Oregon 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 subsequently achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Oregon colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 typically a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Lowell OR or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After 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. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Oregon board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are basically two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Lowell OR. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be Oregon approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Lowell OR area. The length of the instruction 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 required to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction required and every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for Oregon to make sure that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Degrees
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more popular way to get training and acquire a nursing degree in Oregon. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Lowell OR home, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more economical. 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 household commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions 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 utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Oregon and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school relative to Lowell OR as well as the price of tuition are probably going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Lowell OR.
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) in addition to 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 essential that the Lowell OR area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Oregon or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the Oregon school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Lowell OR 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Lowell OR healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all Lowell OR area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN College near Lowell OR
Choosing the ideal registered nursing school is perhaps the most critical phase to launching a new career in the health care field. There are various aspects that you need to think about when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed within this post, it is essential that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Lowell OR.
Why Did You Want to Become a Registered Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to review questions you might be asked. One of the things that recruiters typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not only the personal reasons you might have for being a nurse, but additionally what qualities and talents you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must prepare some approaches about how you would like to address them. Because there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the talents you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down some ideas and talking points that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
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