How to Find the Right Nursing School near Hickman Kentucky
Selecting the right nursing school near Hickman KY may seem like a formidable project, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and measure the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision entirely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your home is probably not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are many important additional aspects to explore before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, such as Hickman KY hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise 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
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. 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 Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option 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 as little as two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Hickman KY area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire 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 generally a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained 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 vary from state to state, so be sure to check with the Kentucky board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are basically two scholastic accreditations available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest time frame, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more in-depth 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 Kentucky approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be received at Hickman KY area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training mandated and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure 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 additional prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Hickman KY or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Kentucky and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole 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 as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Hickman 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 required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as 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 delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, contact the Kentucky school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Hickman 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 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 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 verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Hickman KY healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get 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. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Hickman KY hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend college for many Hickman KY students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary 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 work and family obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Hickman KY?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Hickman 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.
Hickman is a city in and the county seat of Fulton County, Kentucky, United States. Located on the Mississippi River, the city had a population of 2,395 at the 2010 U.S. census and is classified as a home rule-class city. Hickman is part of the Union City micropolitan area.
European-American settlement of this area did not begin until decades after the American Revolutionary War. James Mills built the first cabin on the site in 1819. The community of Mills Point was large enough to receive a post office in 1830. Around 1834, G. Marr purchased much of the surrounding area and laid out more streets.
Two floods devastated Hickman, the first in 1912 and the second in 1913. The flood of 1912 began when a levee located near Hickman broke. Within a few hours the water had risen to the roofs of houses. The flood of 1913 began when a levee near West Hickman broke on April 4. Baseball pitcher Rube Waddell was among the many who helped save the city during both floods. Waddell came down with pneumonia after each flood and subsequently died of tuberculosis.
Select the Right Nursing Program near Hickman KY
Selecting the ideal registered nursing school is probably the most critical step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are many factors that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list 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 proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Hickman KY.
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