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Nursing Schools Near Me | How to Become an RN – Walkersville MD

How to Find the Right Nursing School near Walkersville Maryland

Walkersville MD surgical nurse assisting surgeonSearching for the right nursing program near Walkersville MD may feel like a complex endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure 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 proper education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least costly program or the one that is local to your residence is most likely not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are many key additional things to check into before you decide where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Activities

Walkersville MD Neonatal Nurse with babyRegistered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as Walkersville MD hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to help doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Observing patients
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Managing care
  • Supervising 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 high level 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 deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees

There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Walkersville MD area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately earn a higher degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may 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 commonly a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

When 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) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Maryland board of nursing for any state requirements.

LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees

Walkersville MD LPN assisting patientThere are essentially two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Maryland 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 the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Diplomas

In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Walkersville MD area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction directed and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise those for Maryland 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 approved. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.

What to Ask Nursing Colleges

geriatric nurse with elderly patient in Walkersville MDNow that you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Walkersville MD or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Maryland and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school as well as the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the field.

  • 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 agency. Besides helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided in Walkersville MD for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Maryland or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, contact the Maryland school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Walkersville MD healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments 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 displeased 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 Walkersville MD medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to get 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 as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Walkersville MD hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

Online Nursing Schools

woman attending nursing school online in Walkersville MDAttending nursing schools online is growing into a more popular way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend college for many Walkersville MD students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and household obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.

Attending a Nursing School near Walkersville MD?

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

Walkersville, Maryland

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 4.36 square miles (11.29 km2), of which, 4.35 square miles (11.27 km2) is land and 0.01 square miles (0.03 km2) is water.[2]

The median income for a household in the town was $65,581, and the median income for a family was $69,476. Males had a median income of $47,309 versus $31,817 for females. The per capita income for the town was $24,103. About 2.1% of families and 2.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.3% of those under age 18 and 4.0% of those age 65 or over.

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 5,800 people, 2,094 households, and 1,583 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,333.3 inhabitants per square mile (514.8/km2). There were 2,206 housing units at an average density of 507.1 per square mile (195.8/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 88.0% White, 5.2% African American, 0.3% Native American, 2.4% Asian, 1.5% from other races, and 2.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.1% of the population.

Enroll in the Right Nursing School near Walkersville MD

Walkersville MD nursing studentChoosing the right registered nursing program is potentially the most important phase to launching a new career in the health care field. There are various factors that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this article, it is essential that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Walkersville MD.

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