Nursing Schools Near Me | How to Become an RN – Cambridge ME

How to Select a Nursing School near Cambridge Maine

Cambridge ME surgical nurse assisting surgeonFinding the right nursing school near Cambridge ME may seem like a formidable endeavor, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and assess the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many future students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least expensive school or the one that is local to your home is probably not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are various crucial additional things to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree options that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities

Cambridge ME Neonatal Nurse with babyRegistered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, namely Cambridge ME hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Overseeing patients
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Managing care
  • Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Educating patients and their families
  • Managing health records and charts

Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. 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 basic illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees

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 acquire a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Cambridge ME area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a more advanced degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is usually 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 want 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 usually a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate 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) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to check with the Maine board of nursing for any state mandates.

LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees

Cambridge ME LPN assisting patientThere are basically two academic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest amount of time, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it should be Maine approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Certificates

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at Cambridge ME area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to three 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 training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Maine or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional prerequisites as well.

Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs

geriatric nurse with elderly patient in Cambridge MENow that you have selected which nursing program to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Cambridge ME or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Maine and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school along with the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other schools.

  • 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Cambridge ME for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary 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. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Maine or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, contact the Maine school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Cambridge ME 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 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 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 verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Cambridge ME healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to obtain 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 also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Cambridge ME hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

Online Nursing Programs

woman attending nursing school online in Cambridge MEEnrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more favored way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend classes for some Cambridge ME students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, 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. Therefore if your job and family obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.

Attending a Nursing School near Cambridge ME?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Cambridge Maine 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.

University of Cambridge

The University of Cambridge (informally Cambridge University)[note 1] is a collegiate public research university in Cambridge, England. Founded in 1209 and granted a Royal Charter by King Henry III in 1231, Cambridge is the second-oldest university in the English-speaking world and the world's fourth-oldest surviving university.[8] The university grew out of an association of scholars who left the University of Oxford after a dispute with the townspeople.[9] The two medieval universities share many common features and are often referred to jointly as "Oxbridge". The history and influence of the University of Cambridge has made it one of the most prestigious universities in the world.[10]

Cambridge is formed from a variety of institutions which include 31 constituent Colleges and over 100 academic departments organised into six schools. Cambridge University Press, a department of the university, is the world's oldest publishing house and the second-largest university press in the world. The university also operates eight cultural and scientific museums, including the Fitzwilliam Museum, as well as a botanic garden. Cambridge's libraries hold a total of around 15 million books, eight million of which are in Cambridge University Library, a legal deposit library.

In the fiscal year ending 31 July 2016, the university had a total income of £1.64 billion, of which £462 million was from research grants and contracts.[2] The central university and colleges have a combined endowment of around £6.3 billion, the largest of any university outside the United States.[11] The university is closely linked with the development of the high-tech business cluster known as "Silicon Fen". It is a member of numerous associations and forms part of the "golden triangle" of leading English universities and Cambridge University Health Partners, an academic health science centre.

Choose the Right Nursing School near Cambridge ME

Cambridge ME nursing studentPicking the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most critical step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are various variables that you should take into account when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted within this content, it is critical that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Cambridge ME.

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