How to Choose a Nursing School near Westpoint Indiana
Finding the best nursing college near Westpoint IN may seem like a complex endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and determine the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Deciding on the least costly program or the one that is local to your home is probably not the most reliable way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional factors to explore before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as Westpoint IN hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing 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), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees 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 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 brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Westpoint IN area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 commonly a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has obtained 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 make sure to check with the Indiana board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two scholastic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, usually about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to obtain 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 supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be Indiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study properly 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 have to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at Westpoint IN area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training mandated and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for Indiana or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education 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 may be additional prerequisites as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Westpoint IN or online, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Indiana and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick 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 confirm that you receive a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Westpoint IN for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with 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 delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Indiana or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, get in touch with the Indiana school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Westpoint IN 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 considering 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Westpoint IN healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with Westpoint IN hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more favored way to receive instruction and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend school for some Westpoint IN students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like 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 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 Westpoint IN?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Westpoint Indiana 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 Westpoint (Chinese: 西港中心) is a skyscraper located in the Sai Ying Pun district of Hong Kong. The tower rises 41 floors and 186 metres (610 ft) in height. The building was completed in 1999. It was designed by architectural firm Ho & Partners Architects, and was developed by Chun Wo Construction & Engineering. The Westpoint, which stands as the 84th-tallest building in Hong Kong, is composed entirely of office space. The building is architecturally unique due to its ball structure that adorns the roof; the ball is home to a private club.
The building was originally meant to serve as the headquarters of the Chinese state-owned corporation China Merchants Group, but was sold to the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region in the early 2000s. The entire building is occupied by this office and the ground level is heavily fortified and protected by security. The top level houses the director’s office, a clubhouse, and a grand ballroom. Other features of the building include a gym, a conference centre, banquet facilities, exhibition space, and a beauty salon with barbers from mainland China.
Select the Right Nursing School near Westpoint IN
Deciding on the right registered nursing program is perhaps the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are numerous aspects that you must take into account when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, 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 exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick 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 Westpoint IN.
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