How to Pick a Nursing College in Eustis Florida
Locating the best nursing college near Eustis FL may feel like a complicated undertaking, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and determine the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is nearest to your house is probably not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are many key additional factors to check out before you decide where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first go over what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Eustis FL healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to support doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Eustis FL, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse in Eustis FL. And 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 advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program made available by Florida community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Florida colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Eustis FL or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has obtained 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. Further requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Florida board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are principally two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Eustis FL. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Florida approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Eustis FL area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training required and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Florida to make certain that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Schools
Enrolling in nursing programs online is growing into a more popular way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree in Florida. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Eustis FL home, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and family responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Florida and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school relative to Eustis FL and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly 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 selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
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 confirm that you get a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Eustis FL.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Eustis FL area school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Florida or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, check with the Florida school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Eustis FL 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 considering 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Eustis FL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all Eustis FL area nursing degree programs require a specified 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 local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN Degree near Eustis FL
Selecting the right registered nursing school is probably the most important step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are numerous variables that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out within this post, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. 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 right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Eustis FL.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to consider questions you could be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers often ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the personal reasons you might have for becoming a RN, but also what attributes and abilities you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, along with a significant number of routine interview questions, so you need to ready some strategies about how you want to respond to them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you along with the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the leading choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down a few ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample responses can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
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