How to Select a Nursing Program near Cheney Kansas
Searching for the right nursing program near Cheney KS may feel like a challenging undertaking, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and measure the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is nearest to your home is probably not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are a number of important additional considerations to explore before you determine where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review 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 most significant occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, including Cheney KS hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to help doctors in the treatment 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. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, 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 common 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 acquire a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Cheney KS 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 healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish 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 usually a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has acquired 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. Additional requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Kansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are basically two academic credentials offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it should be Kansas approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Cheney KS area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 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 own prerequisites. So it’s important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for Kansas or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
What to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus near Cheney KS or on the web, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Kansas and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school along with the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection 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 ensure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Cheney KS for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Kansas or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the Kansas school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Cheney KS 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 colleges 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 unhappy 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 favorable reputation within the Cheney KS medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Cheney KS hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is growing into a more in demand way to get training and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for some Cheney KS students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Cheney KS?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Cheney Kansas 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.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Cheney has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
As of the census of 2010, there were 2,094 people, 773 households, and 563 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,052.3 inhabitants per square mile (406.3/km2). There were 830 housing units at an average density of 417.1 per square mile (161.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 97.3% White, 0.3% African American, 0.5% Native American, 0.5% from other races, and 1.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.5% of the population.
There were 773 households of which 40.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 55.5% were married couples living together, 11.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 27.2% were non-families. 24.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 12% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 3.12.
Enroll in the Right Nursing School near Cheney KS
Picking the ideal registered nursing college is probably the most critical step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are various variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is important 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 create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Cheney KS.
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