How to Enroll In a Nursing School near Nondalton Alaska
Locating the right nursing school near Nondalton AK may feel like a formidable project, especially 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 need to obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their determination entirely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is nearest to your house is no doubt not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are many crucial additional factors to check into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely Nondalton AK hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic role 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 as well as where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating 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 administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Nondalton AK area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally 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 utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a four 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 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 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate 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) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to contact the Alaska board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Training
There are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, commonly about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Alaska approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at Nondalton AK area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain 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 amount of training mandated and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training course 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 may be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Degrees
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend college for some Nondalton AK students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, 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. So if your job and family obligations have left you with very 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.
Questions to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Nondalton AK or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Alaska and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school and the price of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things 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 see how your pick 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 recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Nondalton AK for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ 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. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Alaska or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Alaska school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Nondalton AK 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 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 substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Nondalton AK healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with Nondalton AK hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Nondalton AK?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Nondalton Alaska 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.
Nondalton (Dena'ina: Nundaltin) is a city on the west shore of Six Mile Lake in the Lake and Peninsula Borough, Alaska, United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 164, down from 221 in 2000.
Nondalton first appeared on the 1920 U.S. Census as an unincorporated village. This was the original Nondalton village, approximately 2 miles north of the present village. The original site became Old Nondalton. Residents relocated in 1940 to the present location of Nondalton. It formally incorporated in 1971.
As of the census of 2000, there were 221 people, 68 households, and 49 families residing in the city. The population density was 26.4 people per square mile (10.2/km²). There were 120 housing units at an average density of 14.4 per square mile (5.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 9.50% White, 89.14% Native American, 0.45% Pacific Islander, and 0.90% from two or more races. 0.45% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Choose the Right Nursing Degree near Nondalton AK
Choosing the ideal nursing school is potentially the most important step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous factors that you must consider when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have stressed in this article, it is essential that you choose a nursing college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding 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 nurse in Nondalton AK.
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