How to Enroll In a Nursing Program in Colonia New Jersey
Finding the right nursing college near Colonia NJ may feel like a challenging project, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and assess the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least expensive college or the one that is local to your home is no doubt not the most ideal way to pick a nursing program. There are various essential additional factors to check into before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Colonia NJ healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Maintaining 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 generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services in Colonia NJ, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse in Colonia NJ. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program made available by New Jersey community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at New Jersey colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Colonia NJ or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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) in order to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the New Jersey board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Colonia NJ. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, usually about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be New Jersey approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately 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 need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Colonia NJ area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction mandated and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the training 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 contact the health or nursing board for New Jersey to make sure that the training course is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more popular way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree in New Jersey. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online in your Colonia NJ home, this alternative may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within New Jersey and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school relative to Colonia NJ along with the price of tuition are probably going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your pick 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping ensure that you get an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Colonia NJ.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites 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) as well as 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 Colonia NJ area school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for New Jersey or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, check with the New Jersey school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional Colonia NJ 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 colleges you are considering 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 dissatisfied 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 Colonia NJ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all Colonia NJ area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN Program near Colonia NJ
Deciding on the ideal registered nursing degree program is arguably the most crucial phase to starting a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of variables that you must think about when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this article, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing 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 proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Colonia NJ.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not just the personal reasons you might have for becoming a registered nurse, but also what attributes and abilities you possess that make you exceptional at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must organize several ideas about how you want to respond to them. Because there are several factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you along with the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and talking points that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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