How to Choose a Nursing School in Deming New Mexico
Searching for the best nursing school near Deming NM may seem like a difficult endeavor, especially if you don’t know 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 appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many potential students base their selection solely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Going with the least expensive program or the one that is nearest to your residence is no doubt not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are several essential additional factors to check out before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the Deming NM medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, including hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of 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 deliver primary or specialty care services in Deming NM, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse in Deming NM. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by New Mexico community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards achieve a higher 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 New Mexico 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 might desire 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 commonly a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Deming NM or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has earned 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. Other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the New Mexico board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two academic accreditations available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Deming NM. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it should be New Mexico approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly 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 earn a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Deming NM area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction mandated and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for New Mexico to make sure that the training is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more favored way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree in New Mexico. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online in your Deming NM home, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, 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 household responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout New Mexico and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school relative to Deming NM and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick 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 confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Deming NM.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ 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 certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Deming NM area school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for New Mexico or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the New Mexico school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Deming NM 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 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Deming NM healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Deming NM area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN School near Deming NM
Selecting the ideal registered nursing school is arguably the most critical phase to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are various variables that you must consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this article, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Deming NM.
Why Did You Want to Become an RN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's important to review questions you may be asked. One of the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for being a nurse, but also what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a certain number of routine interview questions, so you must ready some approaches about how you would like to answer them. Given that there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an excellent nurse and the perfiect candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but write down a few ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can assist you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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