How to Choose an Accredited RN School near Whitman Massachusetts
Searching for the best nursing school near Whitman MA may feel like a complex project, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their determination solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least costly program or the one that is nearest to your home is undoubtedly not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are many crucial additional considerations to explore before you decide where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first look at the nursing degree options that are available as well as what the jobs of nurses are in our health system.
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Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees 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 two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Whitman MA area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive 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 advance 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 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 acquired 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. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so be sure to contact the Massachusetts board of nursing for any state requirements.
Why Enter the Nursing Profession?
Nurses are an integral part of a Whitman MA medical team, and for many patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career opens doors to many opportunities, such as research, health care education and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for many reasons, among the most significant are its practical and personal rewards. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Most patients in a hospital or home care setting have more contact with nurses than with doctors. Nurses commonly go into the profession due to a desire to administer to the needs of patients, including in instances of short-term treatment of illness and long-term care of chronic conditions. This humanistic side of the health profession, as opposed to the analytical or research related aspects, is attractive to many who choose to enter into a career in nursing. Nurses have extensive applicable skills and can select from a number of work environments, such as nursing homes, doctor’s offices, health clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can progress into a number of specializations, such as substance addictions, critical care, neonatology and genetics. Although most nurses deliver personal patient care, others opt to be educators, policy advisers or pharmaceutical representatives.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including Whitman MA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining 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 typically 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.
Online Nursing Schools
Attending nursing schools online is becoming a more favored way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend college for many Whitman MA students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, 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. And so if your work and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Colleges
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Whitman MA or online, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Massachusetts and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly 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 ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares 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 organization. Aside from helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not available in Whitman MA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different 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 certain 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 delivers a top-notch education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Massachusetts or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Massachusetts school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Whitman MA 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 schools 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 unhappy 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 favorable reputation within the Whitman MA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Whitman MA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Accredited Nursing Colleges Online Whitman Massachusetts
Picking the ideal nursing degree program is perhaps the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are many factors that you need to consider when picking a nursing college. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized in this content, it is essential that you pick a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Accredited Nursing Colleges Online and wanting more information on the topic Accelerated BSN.. However, by using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Whitman MA.
More Massachusetts Nursing Locations
Whitman was first settled by Europeans in 1670 and was officially incorporated in 1875. Prior to becoming Whitman, it was formally the southern parish of the town of Abington. The new name, Whitman, was taken from Augustus Whitman, whose family who grew up in South Abington, and was adopted in 1886. Though before adopting the name Whitman, the small town was known as Little Comfort.
Whitman has a rich history that is deeply rooted in the shoemaking industry. Regal Shoe and Bostonian Shoe are perhaps the most notable companies. At one time there were over 20 shoe factories and related factories making metal shanks in town. There are a few abandoned factories left, and some have been turned into condominiums.
In the late 1930s, Ruth Graves Wakefield invented chocolate chip cookies in Whitman at the Toll House Inn on Bedford Street. The Toll House burned completely on New Year's Eve 1984, in a fire that originated in the kitchen. The inn was not rebuilt. The site is marked with a historical marker, and that land is now home to a Wendy's restaurant and Walgreens pharmacy, with the Toll House sign still in existence. The former Whitman Savings Bank was also the first in the country to offer savings bank life insurance (SBLI). Whitman is the home of the famous Peaceful Meadows Ice Cream, as well as the former home of Saftler's Inc., one of the oldest and largest independently owned fabric stores in the country, which closed in June 2011. In 1964 The Venus Cafe was founded by former professional wrestler Peter Drosos, who fought under the name Pete "The Golden Greek".
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