How to Find the Right LPN School in Angoon Alaska
Now that you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Angoon AK that will provide the right education. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking 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 fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next section. When starting their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Even though tuition and location are relevant considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other concerns, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely 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 cover later in this article. But first, let’s have a look at the function 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 a number of duties that they complete in the Angoon AK health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alaska. While they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients requiring medical treatment is their dominion. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their routine job functions may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Helping physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work responsibilities being controlled by each state, the Angoon AK healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in different specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are generally two scholastic accreditations offered in Alaska that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time period, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Angoon AK, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees 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 obtain a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Angoon AK area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program offered by Alaska community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Alaska colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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) in order to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to check with the Alaska board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Angoon AK area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills 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 Alaska to make sure that the education 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 might be additional prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Many Angoon AK area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Once you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Alaska and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school relative to Angoon AK and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Angoon AK school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping verify that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Alaska 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) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Angoon AK school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Alaska or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, check with the Alaska school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Angoon AK 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 LPN programs 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Angoon AK area to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Alaska require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships in the Angoon AK area.
Enroll in the Right LPN School Angoon 99820
Choosing the right Licensed Practical Nurse college is arguably the most critical phase to starting a new career in the health care field. There are many variables that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical 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 ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Angoon AK.
Why Did You Decide to Become an LPN?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to review questions you may be asked. Among the questions that interviewers often ask nursing prospects is "What made you pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not only the personal reasons you may have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but also what characteristics and talents you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you need to organize several approaches about how you would like to answer them. Because there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you in addition to the talents you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the best candidate for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but take down several ideas and topics that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
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