How to Choose a Nursing Program near Buckner Kentucky
Locating the right nursing program near Buckner KY may seem like a formidable endeavor, particularly if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your final selection. The fact is, too many future students base their decision exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is closest to your residence is probably not the most ideal way to decide on a nursing program. There are a number of crucial additional aspects to check into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the function 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 extensive occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, including Buckner KY hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to support 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 in addition to where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Buckner KY area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a four 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 might wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After 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. Further requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Kentucky board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are generally two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative 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 offering 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 Kentucky 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 effectively 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 obtain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at Buckner KY area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required 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 amount of training mandated and every state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
What to Ask Nursing Colleges
Now that you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus near Buckner KY or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Kentucky and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from so 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 primary two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, 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 agency. Besides helping make sure that you get a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Buckner KY 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) together with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Kentucky school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Buckner KY 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 schools you are considering 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 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 substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Buckner KY healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have associations with Buckner KY hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more preferred way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend school for some Buckner KY students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplementary 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 such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Buckner KY?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Buckner 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.
Simon Bolivar Buckner
Simon Bolivar Buckner (April 1, 1823 – January 8, 1914) was an American soldier and politician who fought in the United States Army in the Mexican–American War and in the Confederate States Army during the American Civil War. He later served as the 30th Governor of Kentucky.
After graduating from the United States Military Academy at West Point, Buckner became an instructor there. He took a hiatus from teaching to serve in the Mexican–American War, participating in many of the major battles of that conflict. He resigned from the army in 1855 to manage his father-in-law's real estate in Chicago, Illinois. He returned to his native state of Kentucky in 1857 and was appointed adjutant general by Governor Beriah Magoffin in 1861. In this position, he tried to enforce Kentucky's neutrality policy in the early days of the Civil War. When the state's neutrality was breached, Buckner accepted a commission in the Confederate Army after declining a similar commission to the Union Army. In 1862, he accepted Ulysses S. Grant's demand for an "unconditional surrender" at the Battle of Fort Donelson. He was the first Confederate general to surrender an army in the war. He spent five months as a prisoner of war. After his release, Buckner participated in Braxton Bragg's failed invasion of Kentucky and near the end of the war became chief of staff to Edmund Kirby Smith in the Trans-Mississippi Department.
In the years following the war, Buckner became active in politics. He was elected governor of Kentucky in 1887. It was his second campaign for that office. His term was plagued by violent feuds in the eastern part of the state, including the Hatfield–McCoy feud and the Rowan County War. His administration was rocked by scandal when state treasurer James "Honest Dick" Tate absconded with $250,000 from the state's treasury. As governor, Buckner became known for vetoing special interest legislation. In the 1888 legislative session alone, he issued more vetoes than the previous ten governors combined. In 1895, he made an unsuccessful bid for a seat in the U.S. Senate. The following year, he joined the National Democratic Party, or "Gold Democrats", who favored a gold standard policy over the Free Silver position of the mainline Democrats. He was the Gold Democrats' candidate for Vice President of the United States in the 1896 election, but polled just over one percent of the vote on a ticket with John M. Palmer. He never again sought public office and died January 8, 1914.
Choose the Right Nursing College near Buckner KY
Picking the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most crucial phase to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous variables that you should think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have emphasized in this article, it is essential that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Buckner KY.
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