How to Select the Right LPN Program near Lake Forest California
There are essentially two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Lake Forest CA. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
What is an LPN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous tasks that they carry out in the Lake Forest CA healthcare facilities where they work. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including California. Even though they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the oversight of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can find patients requiring medical attention is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their routine job activities might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medications
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job functions being regulated by each state, the health care facilities or other Lake Forest CA healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in various specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Programs Online
Attending LPN schools online is becoming a more popular way to receive instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Lake Forest CA. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your work and family commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) was $45,030 in May 2017. The median wage is the wage at which half the workers in an occupation earned more than that amount and half earned less. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $32,970, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $61,030. Most licensed practical nurses near Lake Forest CA work full time, although about 1 in 5 worked part time in 2016. Many work nights, weekends, and holidays, because medical care takes place at all hours. They may be required to work shifts of longer than 8 hours. Employment of LPNs is projected to grow 12 percent from 2016 to 2026. Job prospects should be favorable for LPNs who are willing to work in rural and medically under served areas.
Questions to Ask LPN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Lake Forest CA as well as within California and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you receive a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Lake Forest CA.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to 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 imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the California school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Lake Forest 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 LPN programs 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Lake Forest CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with local Lake Forest CA community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Enrolling in an LPN Program near Lake Forest CA?
If you are considering enrolling in and attending an LPN school near Lake Forest CA, you may find the following information both interesting and useful when making your final decision.
Lake Forest, California
Lake Forest incorporated as a city on December 20, 1991. Prior to incorporation, the community had been known as El Toro. Following a vote in 2000, Lake Forest expanded its city limits to include the master-planned developments of Foothill Ranch and Portola Hills. This expansion brought new homes and commercial centers to the Northeastern boundary of the city. Lake Forest (along with its neighboring cities Mission Viejo and Irvine) is ranked as one of the safest cities in the country.
Lake Forest has two lakes from which the city gets its name. The lakes are man-made, and condominiums and custom homes ranging from large to small line their shores. Neighborhood associations manage the lakes. Lake 1, known as the Lake Forest Beach and Tennis Club, and Lake 2, the Sun and Sail Club. Each facility features tennis courts, gyms, basketball courts, barbecue pits, volleyball courts, multiple swimming pools, saunas, hot tubs and club houses for social events.
The "forest" for which the city is also named lies in the area between Ridge Route, Jeronimo, Lake Forest and Serrano roads, and consists mostly of Eucalyptus trees. It is also man-made, and was created in the first decade of the 1900s when a local landowner, Dwight Whiting, planted 400 acres (1.6 km2) of Eucalyptus groves in the vicinity of Serrano Creek as part of a lumber operation intended to draw development to the area. In the late 1960s, the Occidental Petroleum company developed a residential community in and around the Eucalyptus groves, which had long since expanded and grown much more dense.
Choose the Right LPN School near Lake Forest CA
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most crucial phase to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are various factors that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out within this article, it is essential that you select an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. You originally decided to visit this website because of an interest in Accredited LPN Schools. However, by using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Lake Forest CA.
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