If you are one of the many students considering training to become a nurse, there are a few things that you should know. Although nursing is a very rewarding career that pays relatively well, there are a few drawbacks. Getting into the program is not an easy feat. However, with a few of these simple tips you can get accepted into the nursing program of your choice.
You must be meticulous about your grades. Typically, most nursing programs will not admit students with a GPA less than a 2.5. Strive for the best grades possible, go beyond and above this minimum. The admissions process is quite competitive as there are only a limited number of spaces open. I would recommend maintaining at least a 3.0 and higher.
Pay attention to any and all deadlines. The majority of nursing programs will not accept anything that is late. Obtain a list of all requirements and/or documents and adhere to all procedures. If at all possible, turn them in early. Contact someone, preferably a nursing admissions officer prior to the deadlines to ensure that everything has been received. This way, if something has not yet been received you still have time to obtain it.
Know the nursing admissions criteria before applying. Nursing programs may differ in various schools, prerequisites may not be the same. Therefore, always check at the school at minimum one or two semesters before you intend on enrolling in the program. Complete as many of the prerequisites that you can, those that are required prior to admission should be your first priority.
Gain some experience in the health care field. Some schools may give those with a background in health care priority to their nursing programs. This may include working as a certified nursing assistant or state registered nurse aide. Unlike the nursing program, training for this is short term. It usually takes less than a semester, usually a couple of weeks. Before becoming certified or state registered, you must have so many hours of training. Keep in mind, this may vary by the state you reside in. Most vocational schools or community colleges will offer the course.
The criteria for admissions will also depend on whether or not you are planning to enroll into the RN program or LPN program. Regardless of which you decide, always remember that grades, deadlines, and experience may play a role in your acceptance. Following these simple steps will enhance your chances of being accepted. Also, it never hurts to check in with your program advisor to make sure that you are on the right path.