How to Pick a Nursing College near Chowchilla California
Choosing the right nursing college near Chowchilla CA may feel like a complex project, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and assess the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least costly school or the one that is closest to your house is most likely not the best way to pick a nursing program. There are a number of key additional factors to look into before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first go over what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, such as Chowchilla CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. 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 enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Chowchilla CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire 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 generally 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.
After a graduating student has earned 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 can vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at Chowchilla CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of training required and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
What to Ask Nursing Colleges
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Chowchilla CA or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the field.
- 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. Besides helping confirm that you get an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Chowchilla CA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the California school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Chowchilla CA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs 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 dissatisfied 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 favorable reputation within the Chowchilla CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Chowchilla CA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more in demand way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend college for some Chowchilla CA students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplemental 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 family obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Chowchilla CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Chowchilla 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.
Chowchilla is a city in Madera County, California. The city's population was 18,720 at the 2010 United States Census, up from 11,127 at the 2000 U.S. Census. Chowchilla is located 15 miles (24 km) northwest of Madera, at an elevation of 240 feet (73 m). It is a principal city of the Madera–Chowchilla metropolitan statistical area.
The name "Chowchilla" is derived from the indigenous American tribe of Chaushila (the spelling is inconsistent in reference guides), a Yokut Indian tribe which once lived in the area. The name evidently translates as "murderers" and is apparently a reference to the warlike nature of the Chaushila tribe. It is also to be known among the Yokuts tribes later on to be associated with "bravery". The Chaushila Indians were inadvertently responsible for the first white men "discovering" Yosemite Valley, which occurred when they were being pursued by a band of whites. References to the tribe still abound in Chowchilla, and until 2016 the town's high school used the moniker "Redskins" as their mascot.
Chowchilla made national news on July 15, 1976, when 26 children and their school bus driver were kidnapped and held in a buried moving van at a quarry in Livermore, California. The driver and some of the children were able to escape and notify the quarry guard. All the victims returned unharmed. The quarry owner's son and two friends were convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
Select the Right Nursing Degree near Chowchilla CA
Enrolling in the ideal registered nursing school is probably the most crucial step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous variables that you must think about when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted within this content, it is critical that you select an RN college 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 short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Chowchilla CA.
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