How to Choose the Right LPN School near Tok Alaska
Once you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college near Tok AK that will furnish the proper instruction. If you live 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 carry out the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next section. When initiating their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Even though price and location are significant considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important as well. There are even more questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will address later in this article. But first, let’s take a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What is an LPN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous tasks that they carry out in the Tok AK healthcare facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Alaska. While they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day work functions can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Assisting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their occupational responsibilities being regulated by each state, the health care facilities or other Tok AK healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in various specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are principally two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Tok AK. The one that can be completed in the shortest time frame, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees 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.
LPN Programs Online
Enrolling in LPN programs online is growing into a more favored way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Tok AK. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Tok AK as well as within Alaska and throughout the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program as well as the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping verify that you get a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Tok AK.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alaska or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Alaska school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Tok 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 schools 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Tok AK medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby Tok AK community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Practical Nursing Online Programs Tok Alaska
Enrolling in the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most critical phase to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous variables that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this article, it is important that you select an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. You originally decided to visit this website because of an interest in Practical Nursing Online Programs and wanting to get more information on the topic LPN Online Degrees. However, by utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Tok AK.
More Nursing Locations in Alaska
Tok lies on a large, flat alluvial plain of the Tanana Valley between the Tanana River and the Alaska Range at an important junction of the Alaska Highway (Alaska Route 2) with the Glenn Highway (Alaska Route 1). According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 132.3 square miles (343 km2), all of it land.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,393 people, 534 households, and 372 families residing in the census designated place (CDP). The population density was 10.5 people per square mile (6.1/km²). There were 748 housing units at an average density of 5.7 per square mile (2.2/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 78.03% White, 0.14% Black or African American, 12.85% Native American, 0.43% Asian, 0.93% from other races, and 7.61% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.08% of the population.
There were 534 households out of which 39.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.7% were married couples living together, 11.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.3% were non-families. 24.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.12.