How to Find the Right Nursing School near Whiting Maine
Locating the best nursing college near Whiting ME may feel like a challenging endeavor, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your residence is no doubt not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are various crucial additional aspects to explore before you decide where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first look at what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, including Whiting ME hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Taking care of 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 normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Whiting ME area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately obtain 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 progress 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 achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has acquired 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. Additional requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Maine board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two scholastic accreditations available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest amount of time, normally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Maine approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Whiting ME area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of training mandated and each state has its own requirements. So it’s crucial to make sure that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for Maine or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is growing into a more in demand way to get training and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for some Whiting ME students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and family commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Whiting ME or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Maine and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Whiting ME for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Maine or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, check with the Maine school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Whiting ME 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 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 substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Whiting ME medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Whiting ME hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Whiting ME?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Whiting Maine 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.
Whiting is a town in Washington County, Maine, United States. The town was named after Timothy Whiting, an early settler. The population was 487 at the 2010 census. The town was originally known as Orangetown.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 52.07 square miles (134.86 km2), of which, 46.74 square miles (121.06 km2) of it is land and 5.33 square miles (13.80 km2) is water.
As of the census of 2010, there were 487 people, 206 households, and 145 families residing in the town. The population density was 10.4 inhabitants per square mile (4.0/km2). There were 378 housing units at an average density of 8.1 per square mile (3.1/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 93.6% White, 0.2% African American, 1.2% Native American, 2.3% Asian, 0.8% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.2% of the population.
Pick the Right Nursing School near Whiting ME
Picking the ideal nursing school is perhaps the most important first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous variables that you should think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have stressed in this content, it is critical that you select a nursing college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Whiting ME.
More Nursing School Locations in Maine