How to Select an Accredited Nursing College near Estes Park Colorado
Choosing the right nursing program near Estes Park CO may feel like a difficult undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and measure the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their determination solely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your home is most likely not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are several essential additional things to check out before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss the nursing degree alternatives that are offered together with what the functions of nurses are in our medical care system.
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Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option available to become a nurse. And in order to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must attend an accredited school and program. A nursing student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Estes Park CO area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive 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 past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s Degree. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides 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, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to check with the Colorado board of nursing for any state mandates.
Why Choose Nursing as a Career?
Nurses are an integral component of a Estes Park CO medical team, and for many patients, their primary care providers. A career in nursing opens doors to many opportunities, such as healthcare education, research and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for various reasons, the most significant are its practical and personal advantages. Nurses provide personal, one-on-one care to patients. Many individuals in a medical facility or home care environment have more contact with nurses than with doctors. Nurses often choose the profession out of a desire to administer to the needs of patients, including in cases of short-term treatment of illness and long-term care of chronic ailments. This humanistic aspect of the medical profession, rather than the research or analytical related facets, is appealing to many who elect to enter into a career in nursing. Nurses have a wide range of applicable skills and can choose from an assortment of work settings, including nursing homes, doctor’s offices, health clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can progress into a number of specializations, including substance addictions, critical care, neonatology and genetics. Although many nurses provide personal patient care, others choose to be educators, policy advisers or pharmaceutical representatives.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including Estes Park CO hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to help doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing 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 accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally 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 Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more preferred way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend classes for many Estes Park CO students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus near Estes Park CO or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Colorado and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the cost 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 sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
- 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 organization. Besides helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided in Estes Park CO for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Colorado or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, get in touch with the Colorado school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Estes Park CO 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 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 Estes Park CO healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire 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. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with Estes Park CO hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Compare RN Courses Estes Park Colorado
Choosing the ideal nursing school is perhaps the most critical step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of aspects that you must take into account when picking a nursing program. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this article, it is essential that you select a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Compare RN Courses and wanting more information on the topic Accredited RN Schools Near Me.. However, by using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Estes Park CO.
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Estes Park, Colorado
Estes Park /ˈɛstɪs/ is a statutory town in Larimer County, Colorado, United States. A popular summer resort and the location of the headquarters for Rocky Mountain National Park, Estes Park lies along the Big Thompson River. Estes Park had a population of 5,858 at the 2010 census. Landmarks include The Stanley Hotel and The Baldpate Inn. The town overlooks Lake Estes and Olympus Dam.
Before Europeans came to the Estes Park valley, the Arapaho Indians lived there in the summertime and called the valley "the Circle." When three elderly Arapahoes visited Estes Park in 1914, they pointed out sites they remembered from their younger days. A photograph at the Estes Park Museum identified the touring party as Shep Husted, guide; Gun Griswold, a 73-year-old judge; Sherman Sage, a 63-year-old chief of police; Tom Crispin, 38-year-old reservation resident and interpreter; Oliver W. Toll, recorder; and David Robert Hawkins, a Princeton student.
In the 1850s, the Arapaho had spent summers camped around Mary's Lake, where their rock fireplaces, tipi sites, and dance rings were still visible. They also recalled building eagle traps atop Long's Peak to get the war feathers coveted by all tribes. They remembered their routes to and from the valley in detail, naming trails and landmarks. They pointed out the site of their buffalo trap, and described the use of dogs to pack meat out of the valley. Their recollections included a battle with Apaches in the 1850s, and fights with Utes who came to the area to hunt bighorn sheep, so all three of those tribes used the valley's resources.
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