How to Choose a Nursing School in Sedgwick Maine
Finding the best nursing program near Sedgwick ME may seem like a challenging project, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and determine the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their decision 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 residence is no doubt not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are various crucial additional aspects to explore before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the Sedgwick ME medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, namely hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Sedgwick ME, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse in Sedgwick ME. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six 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 Maine community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Maine 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. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Sedgwick ME or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Maine board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are basically two academic accreditations offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Sedgwick ME. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time period, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Maine approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Sedgwick ME area. The length of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction mandated and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for Maine to make certain that the training course is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more popular way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree in Maine. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online in your Sedgwick ME home, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Maine and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school relative to Sedgwick ME along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares 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 confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Sedgwick ME.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Sedgwick ME area school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Maine or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Maine school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Sedgwick ME healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Sedgwick ME healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Sedgwick ME area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN Program near Sedgwick ME
Picking the right registered nursing college is probably the most critical step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of aspects that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this article, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Sedgwick ME.
Why Did You Want to Become a Registered Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to review questions you could be asked. Among the things that recruiters frequently ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming a nurse, but additionally what attributes and skills you have that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, along with a significant number of standard interview questions, so you must organize a number of approaches about how you want to address them. Considering there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the abilities you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but jot down several ideas and topics that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
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