Nursing Schools Near Me | How to Become an RN – West Union IA

How to Find the Right Nursing Program near West Union Iowa

West Union IA surgical nurse assisting surgeonChoosing the best nursing school near West Union IA may seem like a challenging endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many potential students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is nearest to your house is most likely not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are several essential additional aspects to explore 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, along with the nursing degree options that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Activities

West Union IA Neonatal Nurse with babyRegistered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including West Union IA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:

  • Providing medications
  • Monitoring patients
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Overseeing 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 responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees Available

There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the West Union IA area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a more advanced degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly 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 desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
  • Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner 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) so as to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to check with the Iowa board of nursing for any state mandates.

LPN Training

West Union IA LPN assisting patientThere are principally two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time period, generally about one year, 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 alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Iowa 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 adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Certificates

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be received at West Union IA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction 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 required 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 minimal period of instruction mandated and every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for Iowa 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 sure that the education is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.

What to Ask Nursing Schools

geriatric nurse with elderly patient in West Union IANow that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near West Union IA or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Iowa and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, 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 in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in West Union IA for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Iowa or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Iowa school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some West Union IA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the West Union IA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with West Union IA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.

Online Nursing Classes

woman attending nursing school online in West Union IAAttending nursing schools online is emerging as a more popular way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend school for some West Union IA students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.

Attending a Nursing School near West Union IA?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater West Union Iowa 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.

West Union, Iowa

West Union is the home of the North Fayette Valley Community School District, which comprises the communities of West Union; Clermont; Elgin; Wadena; Hawkeye; Fayette, the unincorporated town of Alpha and the surrounding rural areas. North Fayette and Valley Community Schools combined services in 2013 with the high school in West Union and the middle school in Elgin. The new school's mascot is called the Tigerhawks, due to the merging of the schools mascots, the Valley Tigers and the North Fayette Hawks. This agreement came about as a result of low enrollment and less state aid. This agreement will last until the 2015-2016 school year, unless the two districts' school boards decide to end it early. At the end of the 2015-16 school year, the school boards can decide to either: continue the whole-grade sharing agreement, end the agreement and go back to the North Fayette and Valley school districts, or officially consolidate the two districts.

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 2,486 people, 1,106 households, and 626 families residing in the city. The population density was 894.2 inhabitants per square mile (345.3/km2). There were 1,240 housing units at an average density of 446.0 per square mile (172.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 96.4% White, 1.1% African American, 0.2% Native American, 0.8% Asian, 0.3% Pacific Islander, 0.6% from other races, and 0.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.0% of the population.

There were 5,106 households of which 24.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.0% were married couples living together, 8.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.3% had a male householder with no wife present, and 43.4% were non-families. 38.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.12 and the average family size was 2.80.

Pick the Right Nursing School near West Union IA

West Union IA nursing studentEnrolling in the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most crucial phase to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of factors that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care 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 ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in West Union IA.

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