How to Enroll In a Nursing College in Brookneal Virginia
Searching for the best nursing college near Brookneal VA may seem like a difficult endeavor, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and measure the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. The fact is, too many future students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Picking the least costly program or the one that is closest to your residence is no doubt not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing program. There are a number of crucial additional things to investigate before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the Brookneal VA healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job 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 in addition to where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Brookneal VA, 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 Brookneal VA. And 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 continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program made available by Virginia community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Virginia colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible 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 commonly a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Brookneal VA or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has obtained 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. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Virginia board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are essentially two scholastic accreditations offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Brookneal VA. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time period, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying 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 seek, it should be Virginia approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other 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.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Brookneal VA area. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just one to three 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 amount of instruction mandated and that each state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial 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 get in touch with the health or nursing board for Virginia to make certain that the education is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more favored way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree in Virginia. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online in your Brookneal VA home, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend school for many students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental 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 such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and household obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Virginia and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school relative to Brookneal VA along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the field.
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 agency. Aside from helping confirm that you receive an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools near Brookneal VA.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Brookneal VA area school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Virginia or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies 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 Virginia school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Brookneal VA 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 colleges 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Brookneal VA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all Brookneal VA 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 associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN College near Brookneal VA
Enrolling in the right registered nursing program is probably the most critical step to starting a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you need to take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have stressed in this post, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Brookneal VA.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the things that recruiters frequently ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for being a nurse, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, as well as a certain number of typical interview questions, so you should organize several strategies about how you would like to address them. Because there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down a few ideas and talking points that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
Some Other Cities in Virginia