How to Enroll In a Nursing Program near Wallace North Carolina
Searching for the right nursing school near Wallace NC may feel like a formidable project, particularly 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 need to acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Going with the least expensive school or the one that is local to your home is probably not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are many important additional considerations to check out before you determine where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as Wallace NC hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic role 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 area of expertise along with where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. 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 routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available 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 as little as 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Wallace NC area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program made available by community colleges. It prepares 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 achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might 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 receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the North Carolina board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are essentially two academic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest amount of time, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The other option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be North Carolina approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Wallace NC area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for North Carolina or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with 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 prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Colleges
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus near Wallace NC or online, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within North Carolina and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final decision, 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 along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided in Wallace NC for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain 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 provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for North Carolina or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, contact the North Carolina school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Wallace NC 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 looking at 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Wallace NC healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Wallace NC hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours carried out 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 college for some Wallace NC students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Wallace NC?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Wallace North Carolina 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.
Wallace, North Carolina
Wallace is located in southern Duplin County at 34°44′14″N 77°59′41″W / 34.73722°N 77.99472°W / 34.73722; -77.99472 (34.737248, -77.994627). The town limits extend south into Pender County.
U.S. Route 117 passes through the center of town, leading north 19 miles (31 km) to Warsaw and south 15 miles (24 km) to Burgaw. North Carolina Highway 41 crosses US 117 in the center of Wallace, and leads northeast 14 miles (23 km) to Chinquapin and west 14 miles (23 km) to Harrells. Interstate 40 passes east of Wallace, with access from Exit 390 (US 117 4 miles (6 km) south of town) and Exit 385 (NC 41 3 miles (5 km) east of town). I-40 leads south 44 miles (71 km) to Wilmington and north 89 miles (143 km) to Raleigh.
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,344 people, 1,329 households, and 862 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,299.5 people per square mile (502.4/km²). There were 1,440 housing units at an average density of 559.6 per square mile (216.3/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 55.65% White, 28.26% African American, 0.06% Native American, 0.24% Asian, 14.06% from other races, and 1.73% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 18.18% of the population.
Pick the Right Nursing Program near Wallace NC
Choosing the right registered nursing school is probably the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you need to think about when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this article, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Wallace NC.
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