How to Pick a Nursing College near Sycamore Alabama
Locating the best nursing program near Sycamore AL may feel like a difficult endeavor, 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 need to receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and determine the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Picking the least expensive school 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 several crucial additional factors to look into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely Sycamore AL hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to support doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level 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 provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Sycamore AL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It prepares 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 earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is usually a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous 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 employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Alabama board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are principally two scholastic credentials offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest amount of time, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it should be Alabama approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees 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 many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be received at Sycamore AL area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training course is state approved. In addition to 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.
Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Sycamore AL or on the web, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Sycamore AL for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed 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 essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Sycamore AL 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied 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 good reputation within the Sycamore AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Sycamore AL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Online Nursing Schools
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more favored way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient approach to finding the free time to attend school for some Sycamore AL students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous 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 obligations have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Sycamore AL?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Sycamore Alabama area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Timber Sycamore was a classified weapons supply and training program run by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and supported by Arab intelligence services, such as the security service in Saudi Arabia. Launched in 2012 or 2013, it supplied money, weaponry and training to rebel forces fighting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the Syrian Civil War. According to US officials, the program has trained thousands of rebels. President Barack Obama secretly authorized the CIA to begin arming Syria’s embattled rebels in 2013.
The program's existence was suspected after the US Federal Business Opportunities website publicly solicited contract bids to ship tons of weaponry from Eastern Europe to Taşucu, Turkey and Aqaba, Jordan. One unintended consequence of the program has been to flood the Middle East's black market with weapons including assault rifles, mortars and rocket-propelled grenades.
In July 2017, US officials stated that Timber Sycamore would be phased out, with funds possibly redirected to fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or to offering rebel forces defensive capabilities.
Choose the Right Nursing College near Sycamore AL
Deciding on the right registered nursing program is probably the most important step to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of aspects that you need to take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this article, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Sycamore AL.
More Awesome Locations in Alabama