How to Choose the Best RN Training Program near Longmont Colorado
Locating the best nursing school near Longmont CO may seem like a difficult endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and measure the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Selecting the least costly school or the one that is local to your house is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to decide on a nursing program. There are many important additional aspects to check out before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review the nursing degree options that are offered as well as what the jobs of nurses are in our healthcare system.
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Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a nurse. And in order to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A nursing student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available to aspiring students in the Longmont CO area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their previous 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 employment market.
- Master’s Degree. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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 be sure to contact the Colorado board of nursing for any state mandates.
Why Choose Nursing as a Career?
Nurses are an important part of a Longmont CO medical team, and for a number of patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career opens doors to many opportunities, including healthcare education, research and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for various reasons, among the most meaningful are its practical and personal advantages. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Most individuals in a medical facility or home care setting have more contact with nurses than with doctors. Nurses commonly choose the profession due to a passion to tend to the needs of patients, including in situations of short-term treatment of illness and extended care of chronic ailments. This human side of the healthcare profession, as opposed to the analytical or research related elements, is attractive to many who decide to pursue a career in nursing. Nurses have a wide range of applicable skills and can choose from a number of work environments, including home care facilities, doctor’s offices, medical clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can advance into a variety of specialties, including addictions, critical care, genetics and neonatology. Although most nurses deliver personal patient care, others opt to be teachers, policy advisers and pharmaceutical representatives.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, including Longmont CO hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to help doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting 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 higher degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more popular way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend school for many Longmont CO students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Longmont CO or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Colorado and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other schools.
- 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 agency. Aside from helping verify that you get an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Longmont CO for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ 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. Some states require a certain 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 outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Colorado or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Colorado school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Longmont CO 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 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Longmont CO healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Longmont CO hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Local RN Degrees Longmont Colorado
Deciding on the right nursing school is potentially the most important step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are various variables that you must think about when picking a nursing program. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this article, it is critical that you pick a nursing school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Local RN Degrees and wanting more information on the topic Online RN Degree Programs.. However, by utilizing 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 ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Longmont CO.
More Colorado Nursing Locations
Longmont is a Home Rule Municipality in Boulder and Weld counties of the U.S. state of Colorado. Longmont is located northeast of the county seat of Boulder and 33 miles (53 km) north-northwest of the Colorado State Capitol in Denver.
Longmont was founded in 1871 by a group of people from Chicago, Illinois. Originally called the Chicago-Colorado Colony, the men sold memberships in the town and with the proceeds purchased the land necessary for the town hall. As the first planned community in Boulder County, the city streets were laid out in a grid plan in a square mile. The city began to flourish as an agricultural community after the building of the Colorado Central Railroad line arrived northward from Boulder in 1877. During the 1940s, Longmont began to grow beyond these original limits.
In 1925, the Ku Klux Klan gained control of Longmont 's City Council in an election. They began construction of a large pork-barrel project, Chimney Rock Dam, above Lyons and marched up and down Main Street in their costumes. In the 1927 election they were voted out of office, and their influence soon declined. Work on Chimney Rock Dam was abandoned as unfeasible, and its foundations are still visible in the St. Vrain River.
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