How to Find the Right Nursing College near King Cove Alaska
Choosing the right nursing college near King Cove AK may seem like a complicated undertaking, particularly if you aren’t sure 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 necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your house is probably not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are a number of crucial additional aspects to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first go over what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, along with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, such as King Cove AK hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option 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 as little as two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the King Cove AK area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want 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 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained 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 change from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Alaska board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are principally two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, typically about twelve months, 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 complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Alaska approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at King Cove AK area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just one 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 training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction mandated and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education 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.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing colleges online is becoming a more favored way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend college for many King Cove AK students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus near King Cove AK or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Alaska and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the location of the school and the price of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other schools.
- 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 a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available in King Cove AK for non-accredited schools.
- 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. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers a top-notch education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Alaska school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some King Cove AK healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments 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 finish 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 confirm that the school has a good reputation within the King Cove AK healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with King Cove AK hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near King Cove AK?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater King Cove Alaska area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
King Cove, Alaska
King Cove is located at 55°04′20″N 162°19′05″W / 55.072125°N 162.318040°W / 55.072125; -162.318040. King Cove is on the Pacific side of the Alaska Peninsula. It is 18 miles (29 km) southeast of Cold Bay and 620 miles (1,000 km) southwest of Anchorage. It lies at approximately 55* 03'N Latitude and 162* 19' W Longitude. The area encompasses 2.9 square miles (8 km2) of land and 2.0 square miles (5 km2) of water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 792 people, 170 households, and 116 families residing in the city. The population density was 31.3 people per square mile (12.1/km²). There were 207 housing units at an average density of 8.2 per square mile (3.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 15.03% White, 1.64% Black or African American, 46.72% Native American, 26.77% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 5.93% from other races, and 3.79% from two or more races. 7.45% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 170 households out of which 45.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.5% were married couples living together, 15.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.2% were non-families. 25.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 2.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.90 and the average family size was 3.53.
Pick the Right Nursing Program near King Cove AK
Choosing the ideal nursing program is potentially the most important phase to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are various variables that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this post, it is important that you select a nursing school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce 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 dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in King Cove AK.
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