How to Select an LPN College in Mendon Massachusetts
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Mendon MA that will provide the appropriate education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Although price and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important as well. There are even more questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will discuss later in this article. But first, let’s look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have a number of tasks that they carry out in the Mendon MA health care facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Massachusetts. Although they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can encounter patients requiring medical care is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their routine job functions can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work functions being governed by each state, the Mendon MA health facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are essentially two academic credentials available in Massachusetts that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next 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, along with supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Mendon MA, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Mendon MA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by Massachusetts community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at Massachusetts colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want 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 usually a 2 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 attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to check with the Massachusetts board of nursing for any state requirements.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Mendon MA area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain 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 period of training directed and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for Massachusetts to make sure that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing colleges online is becoming a more favored way to get instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many Mendon MA area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary 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. And so if your work and household commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Massachusetts and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school relative to Mendon MA along with the price of tuition are probably going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Mendon MA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping verify that you obtain a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited Massachusetts schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Mendon MA school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Massachusetts or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, check with the Massachusetts school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Mendon MA 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 LPN schools 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Mendon MA area to assist students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Massachusetts require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships in the Mendon MA area.
Pick the Right LPN Course Mendon 01756
Deciding on the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is probably the most important phase to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of aspects that you must consider when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have stressed within this article, it is essential that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become an LVN in Mendon MA.
Why Did You Want to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you could be asked. One of the things that hiring managers frequently ask nursing applicants is "What made you select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not just the personal reasons you might have for being a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what attributes and talents you possess that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of standard interview questions, so you must ready several ideas about how you want to address them. Because there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the strengths you have that make you an excellent nurse and the best candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but jot down several ideas and topics that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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