How to Select an LPN College in Bakersville North Carolina
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Bakersville NC that will deliver the proper training. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following section. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. While tuition and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important also. There are additional questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will address later in this article. But first, let’s have a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Functions
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many different functions that they perform in the Bakersville NC health facilities where they practice. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including North Carolina. Even though they may be responsible for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients in need of medical assistance is their dominion. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day work functions can include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Assisting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job duties being governed by each state, the Bakersville NC medical facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in various specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two scholastic credentials available in North Carolina that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, normally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Bakersville NC, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in 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 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Bakersville NC area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by North Carolina community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at North Carolina colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a 2 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.
When a graduating student has obtained 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. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the North Carolina board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Bakersville NC area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and that every 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 the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for North Carolina to make certain that the education 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 may be other prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Training
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more in demand way to receive training and attain a nursing degree. Certain Bakersville NC area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing program to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within North Carolina and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school relative to Bakersville NC and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Bakersville NC school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited North Carolina schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required 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 Bakersville NC school you are enrolled in not only delivers a top-notch education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for North Carolina or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the North Carolina school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Bakersville NC 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 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Bakersville NC area to help students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs in North Carolina require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Bakersville NC area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Degree Bakersville 28705
Deciding on the best Licensed Practical Nurse training program is probably the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of aspects that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed within this content, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list 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 Licensed Vocational Nurse in Bakersville NC.
Why Did You Want to Be a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you could be asked. Among the things that recruiters frequently ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating primarily to nursing, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must organize some ideas about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the best candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down several concepts and talking points that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
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