How to Select a Nursing School near Winterport Maine
Choosing the right nursing college near Winterport ME may feel like a formidable project, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination solely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is local to your residence is undoubtedly not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing college. There are a number of essential additional considerations to look into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first review what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different Winterport ME medical environments, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available 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 obtain a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Winterport ME area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by Maine community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Maine colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish 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 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the Maine board of nursing for any state requirements.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend school for some Winterport ME students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work 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 hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Schools
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges in the Winterport ME area and throughout Maine and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping confirm that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans in Winterport ME, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Maine or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Maine school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Winterport ME healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN 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 confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Winterport ME medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Winterport ME hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near Winterport ME?
First settled in 1766 as part of Frankfort, it was set off and incorporated on March 12, 1860. It was named Winterport because of its fine harbor on the Penobscot River estuary, which generally remained ice free, and so became a busy local terminus for trade and shipping during winter months. When the upper Penobscot River froze, commodities like flour were hauled in large quantities from here to Bangor.
In 1841, Theophilus Cushing opened a large steam mill which manufactured 11,000,000 feet of lumber annually. It also made sugar box shooks, lath, clapboard, and soap and candle boxes. The town had two cooperage factories. Other industries produced harnesses, cheese and butter, and men's vests. Until the Panic of 1857, Winterport was a shipbuilding center. But the principal business for most of the town was agriculture.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 37.05 square miles (95.96 km2), of which, 35.52 square miles (92.00 km2) of it is land and 1.53 square miles (3.96 km2) is water. Drained by the Marsh River, Winterport is bounded by the Penobscot River.
Select the Right RN Course near Winterport ME
Choosing the ideal registered nursing college is arguably the most crucial phase to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are many variables that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this content, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Winterport ME.
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