How to Enroll In a Nursing School in Minisink Hills Pennsylvania
Selecting the right nursing school near Minisink Hills PA may seem like a difficult undertaking, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least expensive school or the one that is closest to your house is undoubtedly not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing program. There are a number of key additional factors to check into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Minisink Hills PA medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular 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:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Minisink Hills PA, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse in Minisink Hills PA. 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 continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by Pennsylvania community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Pennsylvania 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 may 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 normally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Minisink Hills PA or concentrate 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) in order to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Pennsylvania board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Training
There are basically two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Minisink Hills PA. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be Pennsylvania approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Minisink Hills PA area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain 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 amount of instruction required and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for Pennsylvania to make certain that the education is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain training and attain a nursing degree in Pennsylvania. Some 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 completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Minisink Hills PA home, this method may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Pennsylvania and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school relative to Minisink Hills PA along with the price of tuition are probably 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 choice, use the following questions to see how your pick 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Minisink Hills PA.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary 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. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Minisink Hills PA area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Pennsylvania or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, contact the Pennsylvania school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Minisink Hills PA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Minisink Hills PA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all Minisink Hills PA area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN College near Minisink Hills PA
Enrolling in the ideal registered nursing college is potentially the most critical step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of factors that you should consider when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed in this post, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop 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 drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Minisink Hills PA.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing prospects is "What made you decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming a registered nurse, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you good at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must organize several strategies about how you want to respond to them. Because there are several variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the strengths you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and topics that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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