How to Enroll In a Nursing School in Long Prairie Minnesota
Finding the best nursing program near Long Prairie MN may seem like a complicated undertaking, particularly if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their decision entirely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least costly college or the one that is nearest to your residence is probably not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are many important additional things to investigate before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first go over what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Long Prairie MN medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Long Prairie MN, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse in Long Prairie MN. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by Minnesota community colleges. It preps 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 afterwards attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at Minnesota colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may 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 obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Long Prairie MN 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) in order to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Minnesota board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are essentially two academic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Long Prairie MN. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, generally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be Minnesota approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Long Prairie MN area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for Minnesota 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 Schools
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and earn a nursing degree in Minnesota. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Long Prairie MN home, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, 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. So if your job and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Minnesota and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Long Prairie MN as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.
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 organization. In addition to helping confirm that you get a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Long Prairie MN.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary 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 specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Long Prairie MN area school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Minnesota or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the Minnesota school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Long Prairie MN 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Long Prairie MN healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Long Prairie MN area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN Degree near Long Prairie MN
Choosing the ideal registered nursing program is potentially the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are numerous variables that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have highlighted in this article, it is essential that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Long Prairie MN.
Why Did You Choose to Be an RN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to consider questions you might be asked. Among the questions that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What made you pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming a nurse, but also what qualities and skills you possess that make you good at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to ready several approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you along with the talents you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the best candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down a few ideas and topics that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can assist you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
Some Other Cities in Minnesota