How to Select an Accredited Nursing Training Program near Westbrook Connecticut
Finding the best nursing program near Westbrook CT may seem like a difficult undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and determine the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many future students base their determination entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Picking the least costly college or the one that is nearest to your house is no doubt not the best way to select a nursing program. There are various key additional considerations to check into before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover the nursing degree choices that are offered together with what the functions of nurses are in our medical system.
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Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees to choose from 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 obtain a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Westbrook CT area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s Degree. 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 allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 Degree. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to check with the Connecticut board of nursing for any state requirements.
Why Choose the Nursing Profession?
Nurses are an essential part of a Westbrook CT medical team, and for many patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career can lead to many opportunities, such as research, health care education and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for many reasons, the most meaningful are its personal and practical advantages. Nurses provide personal, one-on-one care to patients. Most patients in a hospital or home care environment have more contact with nurses than with physicians. Nurses often go into the profession out of a desire to administer to the needs of patients, including in situations of short-term treatment of illness and long-term care of chronic conditions. This human aspect of the healthcare profession, rather than the research or analytical related elements, is appealing to many who elect to enter into a nursing career. Nurses have a wide range of applicable skills and can select from a number of work settings, including nursing homes, doctor’s offices, medical clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can advance into a variety of specialties, such as addictions, critical care, genetics and neonatology. Although most nurses deliver direct patient care, others opt to be educators, policy consultants or pharmaceutical representatives.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, including Westbrook CT hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific 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
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping 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 typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more favored way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend school for some Westbrook CT students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Colleges
Now that you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Westbrook CT or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Connecticut and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you get a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available in Westbrook CT for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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. Certain states require a specific 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 provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Connecticut or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, check with the Connecticut school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Westbrook CT 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 programs 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 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 confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Westbrook CT healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with Westbrook CT hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Affordable Nursing Colleges Online Westbrook Connecticut
Enrolling in the right nursing degree program is perhaps the most critical phase to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are various factors that you should think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed in this content, it is important that you choose a nursing college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Affordable Nursing Colleges Online and wanting more information on the topic Compare Nursing Training Programs Online.. However, by utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Westbrook CT.
More Connecticut Nursing Locations
Westbrook is a town in Middlesex County, Connecticut, United States. The population was 6,938 at the 2010 census. The town center is also classified by the U.S. Census Bureau as a census-designated place (CDP).
Westbrook lies in the shoreline area of the state. The town is bordered by the towns of Essex, Clinton, Deep River, and Old Saybrook, where the Connecticut River empties into Long Island Sound. The Salt Meadow Unit of the Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge is located in town.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 21.4 square miles (55 km2), of which, 15.7 square miles (41 km2) is land and 5.7 square miles (15 km2) (26.47%) is water. The CDP has a total area of 2.2 square miles (5.7 km2) of which 22.33% is water.
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