Scholarships for LPN Programs
What is a LPN?
If you are interested in becoming a nurse, a good place to start is to become a licensed practical nurse (also known as LPN or LVN). An LPN works under the direction of a registered nurse (RN) or doctor, performing a wide variety of valuable medical services to patients every day.
It takes less time to become an LPN in terms of training and education, making it an excellent choice to start a career in nursing.
The outlook for available careers as an LPN is extremely favorable, and there are many opportunities for employment in a wide range of settings.
LPNs earn a competitive salary and the services they provide to patients are in demand.
Working as an LPN will provide a great deal of job satisfaction, as they are instrumental in taking day-to-day care of patients, and making them comfortable. In fact, LPNs are generally the main caregivers, providing an essential level of medical attention to their patients.
If you are interested in a vital, highly-rewarding career, consider becoming an LPN.
How to Become a LPN
In the United States, two of the most popular categories in the nursing field are a registered nurse (RN) or licensed practical nurse (LPN).
To become an LPN, you must first possess a high school diploma or GED to enroll in a nursing program. The length of time it takes to complete the required coursework is approximately one year, and you complete specialized training from a vocational or technical school. You will be required to pass a final exam known as the NCLEX-PN (practical nurse) in order to receive the appropriate diploma or certification.
It is important to think about a nursing career and if it is right for you. An LPN is the nurse who usually has the most contact with patients, and tends to their daily care. A good candidate for becoming an LPN is someone who is caring, compassionate and really cares about the comfort and well-being of their patients. You should be comfortable around illness, injuries, blood and other bodily fluids.
A successful candidate for becoming an LPN is someone who demonstrates a good grasp of nursing concepts, and comes prepared for tackling the variety of responsibilities that come along with an LPN career.
LPN Training Program
LPN Course Requirements
Training to become an LPN generally takes about one year, but may vary depending on where you train. To find a good training location, take a look at state-approved training centers, of which there are many options to choose from. Before you enroll in a "fast track" or "shortcut" LPN training program, make sure it is with an accredited training facility. Generally, there are no shortcuts for LPN training, so do the homework to make sure your training will be recognized by the state or province you live in.
If you are just finishing high school, for example, check with a counselor to explore classes to prepare for entering a nursing training program. A high school diploma or GED is required to move forward with more formal nursing training, and you must be at least 18 years of age.
Other places for training include technical or vocational schools, community or junior colleges and hospitals.
You may be required to take an LPN entrance exam, which is a basic academic test. After enrolling in a certified nursing program, you may be required to attend classroom studies and/or take part in hands-on clinical practice under the supervision of a medical professional, such as an RN.
Once your studies and any practical work have been completed, the NCLEX-PN (National Council Licensure Examination - Practical Nurse) exam must be passed in order to receive the license you will need to obtain work as an LPN.
When training to become an LPN, the following topics will be covered -
- Health Issues
- Nutrition and Diet
- Physical Education
- Growth and Development
- Maternal Child Health
- Medical Technology
- First Aid
- Fundamentals of Nursing
- Psychiatric Nursing
- Medical/Surgical Nursing
- Intro to Pharmacology
You will find that scholarships provide you with one way to help pay for the cost of an LPN program. You can use scholarship opportunities to make your tuition more manageable. You can become a licensed practical nurse even if training programs available in your area are quite expensive.
There are many scholarships for individuals who are in school to become registered nurses or to obtain their Bachelor's Of Science in Nursing. This is something to keep in mind if you are already an LPN and are looking to further your career. Various nursing associations provide scholarship opportunities for individuals who are expanding their career.
It is also not difficult for you to find scholarships to further your nursing career if you are looking to further your career in the healthcare industry. Medical organizations as well as civic organizations often offer scholarships for future healthcare workers. You could very well qualify to receive a scholarship to help you realize your dream of expanding your career.
If you are not yet an LPN, do not despair. There are not as many scholarship opportunities specific to LPN careers as there are for RN degrees. However, there are still many opportunities to receive a scholarship. You can use scholarship search websites to search for programs that are intended for LPN students. You can also look for scholarships for healthcare related careers. There are some sponsors of scholarships for LPN students or for students entering into a healthcare related training or degree program.
There will be other scholarships that can be available to you depending on your specific circumstances. You might have programs for which you can apply if you have a low income or if you are raising children on your own. There could be opportunities for you that are provided by groups or organizations for which you are a member.
Contact the school where you will be enrolling in an LPN program. Most schools have their own scholarships. Some scholarships will be for specific careers and training programs. There will also be scholarships granted based on academic and other achievements. Some scholarships are granted based on your financial need. There are even scholarships for those who are actively involved in their community.
Do take the time to apply for scholarships for which you could qualify that are offered through your college. Your school could have their own scholarships for LPN students. There are likely to be other types for which you can apply as well. Talk to the financial aid office for a list of programs through your school. You can also receive instructions on how to apply for such scholarships.
Do not hesitate to apply for financial aid as well. Grants can go a long way in helping you to pay for your education. You will need to complete the federal financial aid paperwork which can even be done online. Your state will also have grant application programs for which you can apply.
There are certainly ways to cover all or most of the cost of your LPN training. You will need to take the time to find these programs and to apply.
LPN Job Duties
The job duties of an LPN are varied and important.
Working under the supervision and direction of an RN, doctor or physician, the LPN is responsible for helping to take care of patients that are injured, sick, elderly, disabled or terminally ill, depending on where you are working.
In addition to clerical duties such as keeping charts updated and ordering medications, other job responsibilities may include -
- Administering IVs
- Timely dispensing of drugs, medications
- First aid, cleaning and dressing wounds
- Bathing and cleaning patients
- Monitor vital signs such as blood pressure and temperature, report observations and results
- Collect samples for lab tests, perform simple lab tests
- Prepare and administer injections
- Monitor equipment such as catheters
- Housekeeping such as cleaning bed pans, replacing linens, emptying trash cans, cleaning and sterilizing medical equipment
- Supervise nurses' aides
As you can see, the LPN plays a vital role in the overall care of the patient.
Working as an LPN, you can expect to earn a good living. Considering that the training takes only between 9-18 months, usually right around a year, you will get a good return on the investment of time and money spent on education.
Depending on where you are working and depending on the area where you live, the salary range will vary.
Because an LPN is not certified to perform the advanced nursing procedures as an RN, the pay rate is less, but still competitive.
Becoming an LPN is a great way to begin a career in nursing, and many people fund further training from their salary as an LPN. Also, if you are working in a hospital setting, it is quite possible to obtain further training to advance your nursing career.
The average salary for an LPN generally starts at approximately $18/hour. The average median salary is $34,000, with a range anywhere from $32,000 to $40,000.
The more education, training and experience you have, the more money you can expect to make.
LPN Job Opportunities
To begin your career as an LPN, you may wonder what types of facilities are looking for your skills. There are a lot of options in terms of where you can be of service and find a rewarding career.
LPNs can utilize their skills in the following venues -
- Surgical facilities
- Home or private health care
- Private medical practice
- Health insurance companies
- Medical clinics or offices
- Nursing homes
- Group homes
- Rehabilitation or Convalescent centers
- Dental offices
- Mental health facilities
- Public health departments
The opportunities for the LPN are quite promising and of course, will always be in demand.
If a career in nursing is something you've been thinking about, a great place to start is to begin your education as an LPN.
With scholarships and other assistance provided to receive the appropriate training, it can be a rewarding and worthwhile career path worth pursuing.
Begin training for a brand new career as an LPN
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