One of the best ways to enter the healthcare field is to enroll and complete a practical nurse or LPN program. The "L", or license comes after you take state boards. In as little as a year you can earn your certification and start a very rewarding career that is satisfying in both a personal and financial sense.
Finding the right program is essential to making this process as easy and efficient as possible. Here are a few things to consider in this regard:
Understand Your Goals
While some folks enter the healthcare field for purely financial reasons – after all, most jobs jobs pay fairly well – others look for personal validation by helping patients. An LPN certification program is a relatively easy way to find out whether this the patient care field a good fit for you or not.
Decide On A Time-Frame
While LPN programs are offered at both community colleges and vocational schools, they both require the same amount of time to complete. In either case, the length of time to complete an LPN program will depend on several factors.
In particular, whether or not you have the resources – personal and financial – to participate in a full-time manner or whether you must study part-time. A full-time student will take approximately one year to complete an LPN program while a part-time student should plan on spending 16-18 months attending night classes to earn their LPN certificate. These last estimates include the time needed for both classroom study as well as for practical internships in hospitals, hospices or nursing homes.
Choose Your School Carefully
The choice of school should is incredibly important as each institution has its philosophy on how best to train their nurses. Some schools focus on only academics in the first few months while others focus more time with hands-on training, either in the classroom or in a clinical setting. Neither is right or wrong in itself but most students take to one style of education better than the other.
If possible, as a potential student, you should consider taking a tour of several campuses before making a final decision – it may save a lot of wasted time and aggravation later on.
Examine The Numbers
It is also important to understand the specific numbers associated with the program you are interested in. Of particular note is the "pass rate" of the school.
This is a statistic typically compiled by the State Board of Nursing and indicates how many of a school's students pass the compulsory National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN®) versus how many fail. It is the best indication of the quality of the education provided by the institution.
Cost is another important factor, tuition expenses for an LPN program can range anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000 although there is often tuition assistance available.
The advisors at the Athena Career Academy are quite experienced at helping students to choose the right LPN program for their career goals and will be happy to answer any of your questions. For more information on this process or to schedule a campus tour, please contact us online at AthenaCareers.edu or reach us directly at 419.329.4075.