Alaska LPN to RN Programs
The health care industry is experiencing a major shortage in qualified professionals to provide services in the field. As laws start to change in the health care environment, employers are trying to adapt while making sure that patients are given the quality of health care that they deserve. Registered nurses make up the backbone of the industry and as an LPN, you can enter into the field in as little as two years.
Alaska has a total of just under 5,500 registered nurses working in the state (as of 2011). This is a huge shortage that needs to be addressed quickly. Our population is growing and aging and the need for basic and advanced health care is at an all-time high. By entering the field as a registered nurse, you can expect to earn a healthy income. On average, RNs in Alaska earn almost $81,000 a year. This income will vary based on education, experience, employer, location and a number of other factors. Experience will be key in ensuring that you find work quickly and earn the highest starting salary possible.
Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage, Fairbanks Memorial Hospital in Fairbanks, South Peninsula Hospital in Homer and Alaska Regional Hospital in Anchorage all rank among the top 15 employers in the state across all industries. You will likely want to pursue employment at one of these locations upon graduation, but if you can start working for them now, the experience you earn will be significant and you will likely have a job lined up for you as soon as you graduate and pass the NCLEX-RN. In addition, other benefits, such as tuition reimbursement or assistance, could make your educational expenses much easier to handle.
You will also want to turn to the Alaska Nurses Association to find a number of resources that will make a significant difference in your education and career. Events, professional practice, resources, legislation, networking and meetings are all offered to members. Explore the site and see what it can do for you here.
Paying for College
An education comes with expenses. It doesn’t matter who you are, you will need to find a way to cover the expenses of your education somehow. Some students work throughout their education and use the money to get a head start on loans and cover some of their expenses ahead of time, others turn to resources that can help pay for college in significant ways. Working towards a RN degree will give you a number of resources that other professions do not have access to. First, your employer will likely offer assistance as previously mentioned. Colleges also offer unique grants, scholarships and loans to students that enroll in their classes. Ensure that you talk to the financial aid department at each college you are interested in to find the one that can help you the most.
As a registered nursing student you will likely find the most assistance from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Loans, scholarships and loan repayment programs are all on the table and can help in significant ways that are unique to students in the medical field. The loan repayment programs should be carefully considered as they offer large payments towards your student debt upon completion of a two year commitment to an underserved area. This experience will also be highly valuable to employers and should help on your job hunt. Explore your options here.
As one of the most popular choices for students pursuing medical degrees in Alaska, UAA SON offers a great deal to students enrolled in their respected campus. A focus on community, holistic care, and leadership ensures that your education will prepare you for a dynamic work environment. You will also find access to distance learning programs that allow you to study from your home town. This ensures that, not matter where you live, you are able to attend this esteemed school and earn a highly respected and important degree. With associate programs all the way up to master’s programs offered for students moving from a LPN to RN may turn out to be just the start of your journey in the nursing field. Explore your options at this school and see what it can do for you as you move towards your future.