Become a Nurse | Nursing Schools South Naknek AK

How to Pick a Nursing Program near South Naknek Alaska

South Naknek AK pediatric nurse holding babySelecting the best nursing college near South Naknek AK may feel like a complicated project, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is local to your residence is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are various important additional factors to check out before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree options that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Functions

South Naknek AK Registered Nurse (RN)Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, namely South Naknek AK hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general function is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:

  • Providing medications
  • Overseeing patients
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Informing patients and their families
  • Managing health records and charts

Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an 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 basic illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees Available

There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the South Naknek AK area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a higher degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 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 example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

After 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) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to check with the Alaska board of nursing for any state mandates.

LPN and LVN Courses

South Naknek AK geriatric nurse with patientThere are principally two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest time frame, generally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The other choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, 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 guarantees that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Courses

In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at South Naknek AK area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required 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 minimum period of instruction directed and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state certified. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.

Online Nursing Schools

female student attending nursing school online in South Naknek AKEnrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend college for many South Naknek AK students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many 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 obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.

What to Ask Nursing Schools

Once you have selected which nursing program to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near South Naknek AK or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Alaska and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.

  • 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. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in South Naknek AK for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to 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 important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Alaska or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Alaska school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some South Naknek AK 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 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the South Naknek AK healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with South Naknek AK hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.

Enrolling in a Nursing School near South Naknek AK?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater South Naknek 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.

South Naknek, Alaska

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 97.5 square miles (253 km2), of which, 95.1 square miles (246 km2) of it is land and 2.5 square miles (6.5 km2) of it (2.53%) is water.

South Naknek first appeared on the 1880 U.S. Census as one of two unincorporated Inuit villages called "Paugwik."[4] This apparently also included the future village of Naknek on the north side of the Naknek River. There is confusion as to whether the villages listed on the 1890 census, Pakwik (population 93) and Kinuyak (AKA Kinghiak) (population 51) were on either the south or north side of the river. Not until the 1940 census would South Naknek return again, and (for the first time) under that name. It did not appear in 1950, but returned again in 1960 and in every successive census. It was made a census-designated place (CDP) as of the 1980 census. Within the present boundaries is also the former village of Savonoski, which appeared once on the 1940 census with a population of 20, located east of the village of South Naknek (now a ghost).[5] This is not to be confused with a village of the same name, which was evacuated following the Katmai eruptions of 1912.

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 137 people, 46 households, and 33 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 1.4 people per square mile (0.6/km²). There were 137 housing units at an average density of 1.4/sq mi (0.6/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 13.14% White, 1.46% Black or African American, 83.94% Native American, 0.73% Asian and 0.73% Pacific Islander. 2.19% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

Choose the Right Nursing School near South Naknek AK

South Naknek AK Neonatal Nurse with newborn babyDeciding on the ideal nursing college is probably the most important phase to beginning a new career in the healthcare field. There are various aspects that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this article, it is critical that you select a nursing college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing 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 right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in South Naknek AK.

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