How to Select a Nursing Program near Nampa Idaho
Finding the right nursing college near Nampa ID may feel like a difficult project, particularly if you aren’t sure what to look 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 vitally important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their selection exclusively on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is local to your home is no doubt not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are many crucial additional factors to check into before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, namely Nampa ID hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options to choose from 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 two years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Nampa ID area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish 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 generally a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has acquired 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. Further requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Idaho board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are principally two academic accreditations offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest time period, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option is to attain 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, aside from supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be Idaho approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some 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 instruction can be obtained at Nampa ID area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training mandated and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make sure that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for Idaho or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain 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 can be additional prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Nampa ID or on the internet, 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 Idaho and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are probably going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.
- 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 organization. In addition to helping verify that you get an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Nampa ID for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain 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 prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Idaho 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 agencies for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Idaho school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Nampa ID 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 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 confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Nampa ID healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Nampa ID hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend school for some Nampa ID students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, 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 job and family responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Nampa ID?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Nampa Idaho 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.
Nampa (/ˈnæmpə/ ( listen)) is the largest city of Canyon County, Idaho. The population of Nampa was 81,557 at the 2010 census making it the second-most populous city in Idaho. Nampa is located about 20 miles (32 km) west of Boise along Interstate 84, and six miles (10 km) west of Meridian. Nampa is the second principal city of the Boise-Nampa metropolitan area. The name "Nampa" may have come from a Shoshoni word meaning either moccasin or footprint.
Nampa began its life in the early 1880s when the Oregon Short Line Railroad built a line from Granger, Wyoming, to Huntington, Oregon, which passed through Nampa. More railroad lines sprang up running through Nampa, making it a very important railroad town. Alexander and Hannah Duffes established one of the town's first homesteads, eventually forming the Nampa Land and Improvement Company with the help of their friend and co-founder, James McGee. In spite of the name, many of the first settlers referred to the town as "New Jerusalem" because of the strong religious focus of its citizens. After only a year the town had grown from 15 homes to 50. As new amenities were added to the town, Nampa continued its growth and was incorporated in 1890.
Unlike most towns in that historic era with streets running true north and south, Nampa's historic roads run perpendicular to the railroad tracks that travel northwest to southeast through the town. Thus, the northside is really the northeast side of the tracks, and the southside is really the southwest side of the railroad tracks. Founder Alexander Duffes laid out Nampa's streets this way to prevent an accident like one that occurred earlier in a town he had platted near Toronto, Ontario, Canada. In that town, a woman and her two children were killed by a train when they started across the railroad tracks in a buggy and the wheel got stuck. As the Oregon Short Line railroad originally bypassed Boise, Nampa has the fanciest of many railroad depots built in the area.
Choose the Right Nursing Degree near Nampa ID
Selecting the right registered nursing college is arguably the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of variables that you should think about when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have stressed within this content, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create 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 ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Nampa ID.
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