How to Select an LPN Program in Florham Park New Jersey
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Florham Park NJ that will provide the proper education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following segment. When beginning their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their residences or that are the least costly. While tuition and location are significant points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will address later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous tasks that they accomplish in the Florham Park NJ medical facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including New Jersey. Even though they may be responsible for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can encounter patients requiring medical treatment is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their everyday work activities can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their work functions being regulated by each state, the Florham Park NJ health facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. In addition, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are generally two scholastic credentials offered in New Jersey that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest period of time, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, 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 attests that the course of study properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Florham Park NJ, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option offered 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 obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Florham Park NJ area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by New Jersey community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at New Jersey colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may 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 generally a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When 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) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the New Jersey board of nursing for any state requirements.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Florham Park NJ area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training mandated and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for New Jersey to make sure that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more favored way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree. Many Florham Park NJ area schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household 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 hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Colleges
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within New Jersey and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school relative to Florham Park NJ and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the primary two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, 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 Florham Park NJ school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited New Jersey schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Florham Park NJ school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for New Jersey or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, contact the New Jersey school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Florham Park NJ 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 programs 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Florham Park NJ area to assist students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs in New Jersey require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships in the Florham Park NJ area.
Enroll in the Right LPN College Florham Park 07932
Selecting the right Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is probably the most important phase to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are various factors that you need to consider when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have highlighted in this post, it is important that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical 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 final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Florham Park NJ.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's important to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the questions that recruiters often ask nursing prospects is "What made you select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not just the personal reasons you may have for being a nurse, but also what attributes and skills you possess that make you exceptional at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to prepare a number of ideas about how you want to respond to them. Since there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you along with the talents you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the ideal choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
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