When it comes to the broad field of nursing, there are many opportunities to specialize and branch off in different directions. While the variety of options available to nursing program participants is highly attractive to some, others may feel overwhelmed by their choices. Should you obtain your LPN certification or pursue an RN to BSN program? Is there a certain nursing program or school that will be more appropriate for your needs, or does it really matter where you go?
If questions like this are swimming around in your mind, know that you are in good company. Many students spend hours weighing their various options to ensure that they make the best decision and choose the right nursing path. To help make the selection process as easy as possible, here are a few things you may want to consider:
Which Program Do You Prefer?
Before deciding on a school, you may first want to choose your preferred nursing program. Once you have done that, find out which schools offer that particular program. Make a list of schools that meet your goals, then narrow them down as you continue through the following considerations.
Do You Want to Attend a Local School or Travel?
Do you prefer to attend an in-state school, or would you like to pursue your education out-of-state? This decision may depend largely on your budget and whether or not you have a local job that you want to keep while attending school. You might also want to consider whether or not an online nursing program will be the best fit for your current circumstances.
How Much Can You Afford?
Ideally, you would be able to attend any school of your choice, but the real world is not always so accommodating. It is important to choose a school that you can afford to attend. Even if you take out student loans, you still want to make sure that you can pay off any student debt within a reasonable amount of time once you graduate and land a good nursing job. Whenever possible, apply for scholarships that will help you take on as little debt as possible as you pursue a quality nursing education.
What Types of Clinical Rotations Are Offered?
Before choosing a school, think ahead and find out the type and number of clinical rotations that are offered at each one. You may also want to locate and interview previous nursing students at each school to get their thoughts on the programs from which they graduated.
Have You Visited Each School?
After doing your homework, one of the wisest things you can do is visit each school on your list in-person to see how you feel about each one. Not only will different schools have different vibes, but speaking with a counselor at each one will help you pick up any subtle benefits or drawbacks you could encounter if you choose to enter their nursing program.
Ultimately, if you want to succeed in a nursing program, you have the power to do so no matter which school you choose. However, taking the time to select a school and program that will best meet your goals and preferences will help ensure that you choose the right nursing path for your needs.