Is a career in nursing calling to you? If the answer is a resounding “yes,” then you’re in luck. Nurses are in high demand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 9% growth in employment in nursing between 2020 and 2030. Connecticut is among the top states that are experiencing a nursing shortage. Connecticut has the 7th oldest population in the country, which means that as baby boomers retire from the workforce, and more elderly people require medical care, the need for well-educated and highly-trained nurses will only continue to grow.
For prospective nurses who are changing careers after having earned a bachelor’s degree in a different field, the ideal program is an accelerated bachelor’s degree in Nursing (ABSN). This program allows students to complete their bachelor’s degree in Nursing in as few as 15 months, by transferring up to 64 general education credits. If you’ve considered changing careers and are researching accelerated nursing programs in CT, you may be wondering how to go about choosing a school. Here’s what you need to consider when seeking the best accelerated nursing program for you.
Accelerated nursing programs, such as the ABSN at University of Bridgeport, are designed for students who already hold a bachelor’s degree. ABSNs are ideal for students making a career change. As such, many ABSN students already carry some amount of student debt. Therefore, it’s important to find a program that can get you on the road to your career without costing more than you can afford. University of Bridgeport aims to reduce the financial burden of your college education. First, there is no application fee for submitting an application for admission. Secondly, University of Bridgeport offers financial aid resources for all incoming undergraduate and graduate students.
Reentering student life after an absence, no matter the length, can be challenging. Make sure whichever school you choose has a supportive Office of Student Academic Success that provides both academic advising and tutoring resources. The Tutoring and Learning Center at University of Bridgeport offers professional tutoring in both individual and group settings to students. These sessions can cover a variety of topics including writing, study skills, subject-specific tutoring, and more. This kind of support can make a difference in your overall academic success, and your future success as a nurse.
When choosing an accelerated nursing program in Connecticut, location should definitely be an element to consider. As accelerated nursing programs are designed with non-traditional students in mind, it’s important that your school fits easily into your life. How far are you willing to commute to class? Do you want to relocate for school or are you dedicated to staying where you are? The answers to these questions can help you determine which school best fits your needs. Additionally, the location of your school may determine where your first, post-graduation job is. University of Bridgeport maintains strong relationships with local hospitals and medical offices. During the course of their study, nursing students receive clinical experience in these affiliate facilities. Many students find that the connections they make during their clinical training correspond with future job opportunities. Choose a nursing school that has connections to medical facilities you might be interested in working for.
Career Training and Support
Apart from providing a scholastically rigorous education, the best thing your future nursing program can do for you is to prepare you for a career in nursing. There are multiple ways your school can do this. Firstly, your accelerated nursing program should have a strong clinical outreach program. Students should be provided with access to a variety of clinical sites, including local hospitals, schools, medical offices, and laboratories, to complete their practical studies. Secondly, your accelerated nursing program should also offer career counseling and access to internship placements. Access to career training, career fairs, and career counseling can make a difference in your job search after graduating from your accelerated nursing program.
No matter which accelerated nursing programs in Connecticut you’re considering, the minimum requirement they should meet is that they’re accredited by either the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. Accredited programs have been evaluated, reviewed, and ultimately approved by experts in the field. This process of accreditation not only guarantees that students are provided with a high quality education during their program of study, but also that they qualify to sit for nursing licensure exams. Only the best accelerated nursing programs are accredited. Without accreditation, there is no guarantee that a career in nursing will be possible. So, make sure that you’re enrolling in an accelerated BSN program that has been accredited.
With the rise in popularity of accelerated nursing programs, you may feel overwhelmed by the available options. Not all nursing programs are created equal, however. From clinical training to academic support, there are ways that the best accelerated nursing programs set themselves apart. Search for a nursing program that fits your needs and fills the qualifications discussed above, and you’ll be set up for success.
Are you considering accelerated nursing programs in Connecticut? Learn more about University of Bridgeport’s accelerated BSN program, here!