How to Choose a Nursing College near Ben Lomond California
Locating the right nursing college near Ben Lomond CA may seem like a difficult project, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many prospective students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive school or the one that is nearest to your house is no doubt not the best way to pick a nursing school. There are various important additional aspects to check out before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first go over what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different Ben Lomond CA medical settings, namely hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option offered 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 as little as two years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Ben Lomond CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by California community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at California colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible 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 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 generally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has earned 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 can vary from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
Online Nursing Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more preferred way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for some Ben Lomond CA students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and family obligations have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges in the Ben Lomond CA area and throughout California and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
- 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 agency. Aside from helping verify that you get a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans in Ben Lomond CA, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary 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. Many 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 prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. In addition, contact the California school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Ben Lomond CA 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 programs you are considering 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 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 superb reputation within the Ben Lomond CA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with Ben Lomond CA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near Ben Lomond CA?
Ben Lomond, California
The mountain was named by John Burns, a Scot who settled on the west side of the ridge in 1851. Burns named the mountain after one in Scotland. Ben Lomond means "beacon peak" in Gaelic. Burns became one of the first vintners in the Santa Cruz Mountains, and is usually also credited with naming the community of Bonny Doon. The San Lorenzo River watershed contains extensive forests of Coast redwood, and was an early center of the logging/lumber industry in Santa Cruz County. The community was originally known as Pacific Mills, after a sawmill operation located there. When, in 1887, the community applied for a U.S. Post Office, residents voted to adopt the name of the mountain.
Ben Lomond is located on State Highway 9, about 12 miles from Santa Cruz, California and 34 miles from San Jose, California (the nearest major city) at 37°5′24″N 122°5′24″W / 37.09000°N 122.09000°W / 37.09000; -122.09000 (37.09, -122.09). According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 8.4 square miles (22 km2). The San Lorenzo River runs through it, in what is known locally as the San Lorenzo Valley, which runs SE/NW to the east of Ben Lomond Mountain (really a long ridge whose highest point has an elevation of 810m/2660 ft).
The National Weather Service has kept weather records for Ben Lomond since 1937. The Western Climate Center reports that Ben Lomond has an average annual rainfall of 49.00 inches and an average annual snowfall of 0.2 inch. January is the coldest month with a normal maximum of 61.5 °F (16.4 °C) and a normal minimum of 36.9 °F (2.7 °C). August is the warmest month with a normal maximum of 85.5 °F (29.7 °C) and a normal minimum of 50.4 °F (10.2 °C).
Select the Right RN College near Ben Lomond CA
Deciding on the right registered nursing college is perhaps the most critical first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are many aspects that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have highlighted in this content, it is essential that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce 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 drive to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Ben Lomond CA.
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