How to Enroll In a Nursing College in Chesterfield South Carolina
Finding the best nursing college in Chesterfield SC may feel like a complicated 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 receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and measure the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Having said that, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the nursing school. Going with the least costly college or the one that is closest to your house is no doubt not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are many essential additional factors to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, along with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical care delivery system in Chesterfield SC. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses in Chesterfield SC with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And in order 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 earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in Chesterfield SC.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in Chesterfield SC healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Chesterfield SC 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 wish to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After 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. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Chesterfield SC board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two academic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it should be Chesterfield SC approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants 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.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have 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 training directed and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Chesterfield SC to make sure that the training is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local Chesterfield SC healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and family obligations have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Courses
Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Chesterfield SC and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other programs.
- 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 organization. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools in Chesterfield SC.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary 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. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for South Carolina or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, contact the South Carolina school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Chesterfield SC 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 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 displeased 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 good reputation within the Chesterfield SC healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Chesterfield SC clinical environment. Essentially all South Carolina nursing degree programs require a specified 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 assist with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN Course in Chesterfield SC
Choosing the ideal registered nursing degree program is perhaps the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are many aspects that you need to think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this content, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Chesterfield SC.
Why Did You Decide to Become an RN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not merely the personal reasons you might have for being a registered nurse, but additionally what attributes and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you must prepare several strategies about how you would like to address them. Considering there are so many factors that go into selecting 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 as well as the strengths you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the ideal choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but take down several ideas and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
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