How to Find the Right LPN College in Clark South Dakota
Once you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it’s important that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Clark SD that will furnish the proper instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following section. When initiating 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. Even though cost and location are important considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important too. There are various other questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will talk about later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Responsibilities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous tasks that they complete in the Clark SD health facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including South Dakota. While they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the oversight of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients seeking medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their day-to-day job functions can include:
- Checking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Helping physicians or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational responsibilities being mandated by each state, the Clark SD healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two scholastic accreditations available in South Dakota that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with providing 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 some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Clark SD, and that most 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 acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Clark SD area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by South Dakota community colleges. It preps 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 ultimately earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at South Dakota colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want 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 normally a two 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.
After a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the South Dakota board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Clark SD area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in 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. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction mandated and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for South Dakota to make certain that the education is state approved. 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 Schools
Attending nursing colleges online is becoming a more popular way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many Clark SD area schools will require attending 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 remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout South Dakota and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Clark SD along with the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection 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 Clark SD school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited South Dakota schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Clark SD school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for South Dakota 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 looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the South Dakota school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Clark SD 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 colleges 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 verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Clark SD area to assist students attain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs in South Dakota require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Clark SD area.
Choose the Right LPN Degree Clark 57225
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse college is perhaps the most critical phase to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of aspects that you must think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN in Clark SD.
Why Did You Desire to Become an LPN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to consider questions you may be asked. One of the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, in addition to a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to ready a number of ideas about how you want to address them. Because there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the strengths you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down some ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
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