Become a Nurse | Nursing Schools San Lorenzo CA

How to Select a Nursing Degree Program near San Lorenzo California

San Lorenzo CA pediatric nurse holding babyChoosing the right nursing program near San Lorenzo CA may seem like a complex project, particularly 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 obtain the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your final selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their selection solely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least costly school or the one that is closest to your house is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are various essential additional aspects to check into before you decide where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Functions

San Lorenzo CA Registered Nurse (RN)Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, such as San Lorenzo CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to support doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:

  • Providing medications
  • Monitoring patients
  • Conducting physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Instructing patients and their families
  • Keeping health records and charts

Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally 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 Degrees Available

There are multiple degrees to choose from 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 obtain a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the San Lorenzo CA area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later achieve a more advanced degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish 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 commonly a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

Once a graduating student has acquired 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. Additional requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the California board of nursing for any state mandates.

LPN Programs

San Lorenzo CA geriatric nurse with patientThere are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it should be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Courses

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at San Lorenzo CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length 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 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 that each state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state certified. As well as 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.

Online Nursing Programs

female student attending nursing school online in San Lorenzo CAEnrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more in demand way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend school for many San Lorenzo CA students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more 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 household commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.

Things to Ask Nursing Schools

Once you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus near San Lorenzo CA or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, 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. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in San Lorenzo CA 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 specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, get in touch with the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some San Lorenzo CA 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the San Lorenzo CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain 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 certain 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 San Lorenzo CA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.

Enrolling in a Nursing School near San Lorenzo CA?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater San Lorenzo California 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.

San Lorenzo, California

San Lorenzo, also known as San Lorenzo Village, is a census-designated place (CDP) located in the East Bay of the San Francisco Bay Area in Alameda County, California, United States. The population was 23,452 at the 2010 census. It is an unincorporated community, located at the banks of San Lorenzo Creek. It was originally named Squattersville in 1851, but later renamed to San Lorenzo.[6]

In 1944, under contract to the U.S. Navy, The David D. Bohannon Company began construction of San Lorenzo Village, which was one of the nation's first planned communities, with parcels designated for schools, churches, parks, and several retail centers. Bohannon's pioneering pre-cutting techniques, referred to as the "California method," were used in later developments, such as the more famous Levittown, Pennsylvania.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.8 square miles (7.3 km2), of which, 2.8 square miles (7.3 km2) is land and 0.24% is water. San Lorenzo Creek runs partly through the town. It is located between the incorporated cities of San Leandro to the north and Hayward to the south.

Select the Right Nursing Program near San Lorenzo CA

San Lorenzo CA Neonatal Nurse with newborn babySelecting the ideal nursing program is probably the most important step to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you should think about when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed within this post, it is important that you select a nursing school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop 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 San Lorenzo CA.

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