How to Enroll In a Nursing College near Bardstown Kentucky
Locating the best nursing school near Bardstown KY may feel like a complicated undertaking, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently 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 determine the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is local to your residence is probably not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are a number of key additional aspects to check into before you decide where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, such as Bardstown KY hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing 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 advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Bardstown KY area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible 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 job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to contact the Kentucky board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are essentially two academic accreditations offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Kentucky approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees 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.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at Bardstown KY area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in 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 have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of training directed and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education is state certified. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
What to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Bardstown KY or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Kentucky and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Bardstown KY for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Kentucky or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the Kentucky school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Bardstown KY 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Bardstown KY medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with Bardstown KY hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more in demand way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend college for some Bardstown KY students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Bardstown KY?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Bardstown Kentucky 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.
Bardstown is a home rule-class city in Nelson County, Kentucky, in the United States. The population was recorded as 11,700 by the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Nelson County. It is named for the pioneering Bard brothers. David Bard obtained a 1,000 acres (400 ha) land grant in 1785 in what was then Jefferson County, Virginia, from Governor Patrick Henry. William Bard surveyed and platted the town. It was originally chartered as Baird's Town in 1788, and has also been known as Beardstown, and Beards Town.
First settled by European Americans in 1780, Bardstown is the second oldest city in Kentucky. Named county seat of the newly created Nelson County, Virginia (now Kentucky) in 1784, the town was formally established in 1788. It was incorporated by the state assembly in 1838.
Reflecting the westward migration of Americans over the "Blue Ridge" after the Revolutionary War, Bardstown was also the first center of Roman Catholicism west of the Appalachian Mountains in the original western frontier territories of the United States. The Diocese of Bardstown was established on February 8, 1808, by Pope Pius VII, (1742-1823, reigned 1800-1823), to serve all Catholics between the Appalachians and the Mississippi River. This divided the previous all-encompassing Diocese of Baltimore, established in 1789. This area is now served by 44 dioceses and archdioceses in 10 states, showing the development of communities with Catholics across the nation as immigration brought new populations.
Choose the Right Nursing College near Bardstown KY
Enrolling in the ideal registered nursing college is potentially the most critical step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are many aspects that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out within this content, it is essential that you pick an RN college 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 select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Bardstown KY.
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