How to Pick a Nursing School in Mooresville North Carolina
Selecting the right nursing school near Mooresville NC may feel like a complicated undertaking, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Deciding on the least expensive school or the one that is closest to your house is probably not the most reliable way to choose a nursing program. There are several important additional aspects to look into before you determine 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 healthcare system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the Mooresville NC healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. 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 Mooresville NC, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse in Mooresville NC. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 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 commonly a 2 year program offered by North Carolina community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a four year program offered at North Carolina 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 may 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 normally a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Mooresville NC or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the North Carolina board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Training
There are essentially two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Mooresville NC. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time period, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be North Carolina approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study 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 need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Mooresville NC area. The length of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make certain that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for North Carolina to make sure that the training course is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree in North Carolina. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online in your Mooresville NC home, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like 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 work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Colleges
Once you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout North Carolina and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school relative to Mooresville NC along with the price of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the field.
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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping ensure that you get a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Mooresville NC.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements 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 specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Mooresville NC area school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for North Carolina or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. In addition, contact the North Carolina school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Mooresville NC 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 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 superb reputation within the Mooresville NC healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all Mooresville NC area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Select the Right RN Course near Mooresville NC
Picking the ideal registered nursing college is potentially the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are a number of factors that you must take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have highlighted within this article, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Mooresville NC.
Why Did You Want to Be a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you could be asked. One of the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the personal reasons you may have for becoming a nurse, but additionally what attributes and skills you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, in addition to a certain number of routine interview questions, so you should prepare several approaches about how you want to address them. Given that there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the abilities you have that make you an excellent nurse and the ideal choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down some ideas and topics that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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