How to Enroll In the Right Nursing School near Sunspot New Mexico
Finding the right nursing school near Sunspot NM may feel like a complicated undertaking, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and determine the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is closest to your residence is most likely not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are several essential additional factors to look into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first look at the nursing degree alternatives that are available along with what the roles of nurses are in our medical system.
There are several degree options available to become a nurse. And in order to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A nursing student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available to aspiring students in the Sunspot NM area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is typically a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the New Mexico board of nursing for any state mandates.
Why Choose Nursing as a Career?
Nurses are an integral part of a Sunspot NM medical team, and for a number of patients, their primary care providers. A career in nursing can lead to many opportunities, including research, health care education and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for various reasons, among the most notable are its personal and practical advantages. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Most individuals in a medical facility or home care setting have more contact with nurses than with physicians. Nurses often choose the profession due to a passion to administer to the needs of patients, including in cases of short-term treatment of illness and extended care of chronic ailments. This human side of the healthcare profession, as opposed to the analytical or research related elements, is appealing to many who choose to enter into a nursing career. Nurses have extensive applicable skills and can select from an assortment of work settings, such as home care facilities, physician’s offices, medical clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can progress into a variety of specialties, such as substance addictions, critical care, genetics and neonatology. While most nurses provide primary patient care, others choose to be teachers, policy consultants or pharmaceutical representatives.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, including Sunspot NM hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are principally two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time period, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it should be New Mexico approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Sunspot NM area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction mandated and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for New Mexico or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course 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 Programs
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more popular way to receive training and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend college for many Sunspot NM students. Pertaining to 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 can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Sunspot NM or online, you can utilize the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within New Mexico and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your selection 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 recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you obtain a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available in Sunspot NM for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as 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 school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for New Mexico or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, contact the New Mexico school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Sunspot NM 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 colleges 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 dissatisfied 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 superb reputation within the Sunspot NM medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Sunspot NM hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Sunspot NM?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing College in the greater Sunspot New Mexico area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both interesting and useful regarding the location of your school campus.
Sunspot, New Mexico
Sunspot is an unincorporated community, located in the Sacramento Mountains, in Otero County, New Mexico, United States. It is located within the Lincoln National Forest, 18 miles south of Cloudcroft. Its elevation is 9200 feet. The Sunspot Solar Observatory is located in Sunspot in the Sacramento Mountains.
It was named after the presence of the National Solar Observatory on Sacramento Peak, in a vote that was allegedly rigged by the observatory's director John Evans. The road leading to Sunspot from Cloudcroft is New Mexico State Road 6563, named for the brightest wavelength of hydrogen emission, H-alpha. This scenic byway features signposts marking the relative locations of the planets from the sun in proportion to their distance to Sunspot.
The telescope is open to the public, and the visitors center offers guided tours of the site on Saturdays and Sundays. On other days there is a self-guided 1/2 mile trail around the telescope and White Sands overlook.
Select the Right Nursing Program near Sunspot NM
Selecting the ideal nursing college is perhaps the most important step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are various variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing college. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this article, it is essential that you select a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Nursing Education Programs. However, by using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Sunspot NM.
Other Nursing Locations in New Mexico