How to Choose a Nursing College near Brookdale California
Locating the best nursing program near Brookdale CA may feel like a challenging project, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and assess the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least expensive college or the one that is local to your home is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are various crucial additional aspects to check out before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, such as Brookdale CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing 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 generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Brookdale CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 normally a two year program after attaining 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 received one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are generally two scholastic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, commonly about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it should be California 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 many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Brookdale CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within 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 minimal period of instruction mandated and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state certified. Along with 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.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Brookdale CA or online, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up 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 recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping ensure that you get a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Brookdale CA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary 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. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for California or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, contact the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Brookdale CA 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 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 Brookdale CA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get 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. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Brookdale CA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more popular way to get instruction and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend college for many Brookdale CA students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, 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. So if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Brookdale CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Brookdale California 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.
Brookdale is a census-designated place (CDP) in Santa Cruz County, California. Brookdale sits at an elevation of 405 feet (123 m). It is located in the San Lorenzo Valley between Boulder Creek and Ben Lomond on Highway 9. The 2010 United States census reported Brookdale's population was 1,991.
This region experiences warm (but not hot) and dry summers, with no average monthly temperatures above 71.6 °F. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Brookdale has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate, abbreviated "Csb" on climate maps.
The Brookdale Inn & Spa, formerly known as the Brookdale Lodge, is known for the stream running through its primary restaurant, the Brook Room. The original lodge was built in 1890 at the site of the Grover Lumber Mill by James Harvey Logan a botanist and Judge (also responsible for the cultivation of the Logan berry). Before Judge Logan's development, the area was known as Clear Creek and Brookville. The inn was built around the river after 1922 while it was owned by Dr. Camp. The lodge was purchased by a new owner in 2007 and the name was changed to Brookdale Inn and Spa. The lodge underwent many structural changes followed by neglect and eventual abandonment. The lodge appeared on the paranormal show Ghost Adventures in 2012. The property has once again been sold and is undergoing intensive renovations.
Enroll in the Right Nursing Degree near Brookdale CA
Enrolling in the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most critical step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous aspects that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have highlighted within this article, it is essential that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist 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 desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Brookdale CA.
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