How to Pick a Nursing Program near Waialua Hawaii
Selecting the best nursing program near Waialua HI may seem like a formidable undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least expensive school or the one that is local to your home is probably not the most ideal way to choose a nursing school. There are various crucial additional considerations to investigate before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our health system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different Waialua HI medical environments, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse. And 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 advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Waialua HI area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by Hawaii community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Hawaii colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example 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 fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Hawaii board of nursing for any state requirements.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend college for some Waialua HI students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Schools
Once you have determined which nursing program to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges in the Waialua HI area and throughout Hawaii and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick 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 organization. Aside from helping confirm that you get an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans in Waialua HI, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Hawaii or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Hawaii school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Waialua HI 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 looking at 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 unhappy 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 Waialua HI medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Waialua HI hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near Waialua HI?
Waialua is a census-designated place and North Shore community in the Waialua District on the island of Oʻahu, City & County of Honolulu, Hawaii, United States. As of the 2010 Census, the CDP had a population of 3,860.
Waialua was one of the six original districts of ancient Hawaii on the island, known as moku. Waialua is a former (sugar) mill town and residential area, quite different in its quiet ambiance from nearby Haleʻiwa, which is more commercial and tourist oriented. The Waialua Sugar Mill is the center of this town and the historical base of its plantation history.
Waialua is located at 21°34'31" North, 158°7'46" West (21.575300, -158.129457), southwest of Haleʻiwa, reached on Waialua Beach Road (State Rte. 82) or Kaukonahua Road (State Rte. 830). Kaukonahua Road turns eastward and, as State Rte. 803 then 801 runs up into the central plateau of Oʻahu to Wahiawā or (as 803) to Schofield Barracks. Farrington Highway (State Rte. 930) runs westward to Mokulēʻia.
Pick the Right RN School near Waialua HI
Picking the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most crucial phase to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of aspects that you need to think about when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this content, 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 utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list 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 desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Waialua HI.
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