How to Pick a Nursing College near Summerland Key Florida
Searching for the best nursing college near Summerland Key FL may feel like a complicated endeavor, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many future students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is local to your residence is no doubt not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing college. There are several crucial additional things to check into before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the role of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different Summerland Key FL medical settings, namely hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing 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 more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically 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 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 earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Summerland Key FL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by Florida community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Florida 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 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 normally a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has received 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. Additional requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Florida board of nursing for any state requirements.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more in demand way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for many Summerland Key FL students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplementary 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 such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and household obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges in the Summerland Key FL area and throughout Florida and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- 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 agency. Aside from helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans in Summerland Key FL, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Florida or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Additionally, get in touch with the Florida school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Summerland Key FL 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 schools you are considering 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 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 superb reputation within the Summerland Key FL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Summerland Key FL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near Summerland Key FL?
It is home to the Brinton Environmental Center of the Florida National High Adventure Sea Base and is a field station for Mote Marine Laboratory. A private, 2550-foot community airstrip (FD51) is located just south of the Overseas Highway on West Shore Drive at mile marker 25.
While Hudgins was the chief structural engineer for the City of Miami, he met Waren Niles, whose family owned a large part of Summerland since the 1900s. In 1941, the Niles family notified Hudgins they were considering selling their Summerland property. By 1947, Hudgins had made an offer of $100,000 for the purchase of the Niles property and the family sold their Summerland real estate to Hudgins.
In the fall of 1948 two hurricanes hit the Lower Keys with tidal surges that rose six feet and caused much flood damage to the area. After Hudgins saw the high water mark on Summerland he decided that homes built in his development would have to be elevated. He purchased two surplus military buildings and had his construction crews secure them atop utility poles at the foot of what is Dobie Street today. This was not only the Hudgins family's first home on Summerland, but also one of the first homes in the Keys on stilts — if not the first in all the Keys. Building code today requires all homes be built elevated to be above the floodplain.
Choose the Right RN School near Summerland Key FL
Choosing the right registered nursing college is probably the most important step to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are a number of aspects that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this article, it is essential that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Summerland Key FL.
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