Get the Most Out of Life with a Practical Nursing Program

There have always been great reasons to get into nursing school -- it's the one field you can go into knowing that you'll spend every working day of your life helping people feel better, get better, and stay better. There is always demand for more nurses, so getting a certification from a practical nursing school is a virtual guarantee of constant employment. And in most cases, the wage for a mid-ranked LPN is above median wage for the country.

With the economy ever-slumping and the peak baby boomers just hitting retirement age, the demand for nurses -- especially home health care nurses and geriatric nurses -- will continue to explode in the coming decade. That's why practical nursing schools all over the nation are girding their metaphorical loins, preparing for a deluge of new students. As everyone knows, when demand for a job goes up, the pay goes up as well -- and nursing already pays pretty well already.

With the aging population guaranteeing job stability, and the training necessary to get certification through an LPN program with a specialty in home health care available in two years or less from a wide variety of nursing schools, expect to see a waiting list to get into some nursing programs in the coming years.

Of course, you'll always be able to complete the short training and easy test to become a Certified Nursing Assistant, but that's kind of like being a assistant dental hygienist -- not very well respected, and not very well paid. If you need an income yesterday and you're willing to work days and spend your nights at a practical nursing program, it's not a bad option. If you can get into a nursing school directly, however, it's generally better to start your career with your LPN certification.

The last option is to stick with the nursing program even longer and attempt to become a Registered Nurse right off the bat -- but not many people are willing to sacrifice the extra couple of years and add to their school debt in order to obtain a status that they can get just as easily by taking registered nursing programs at their institution of choice (while they work there as an LPN.)

Even if you live out in the boondocks and you don't have a college that offers practical nursing programs, you aren't without options. A variety of online institutions have recently become accredited to deliver nursing classes to anyone with an Internet connection. The advantages of doing so are the same as the disadvantages: it's on your schedule. If you're a type A personality, you can dominate the online practical nursing program and come away with an LPN degree in six months. If you're a type Z personality, you can fritter away years slowly building up enough credits to get certified. It's all up to you.

Either way, whenever you get there, you will have obtained a stable, personally rewarding career in a lucrative and in-demand field. In the end, how much more than that can we ask for?

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