The Economy, Helping Others, and the Benefits of LPN Training

Let's get down to brass tacks: we've mostly stopped talking about the economy, but it hasn't really recovered yet. We still have an unemployment rate in the double-digits nationwide. It's extraordinarily hard to get a job that pays the median wage straight out of college, even with a four-year degree. The worst part is that there's no 'recovery' in sight: this is the new normal. This is why more and more Americans are considering Allied nursing school

On the other hand, maybe we've all got our priorities upside-down. In a world full of people in need, shouldn't we be focusing more on helping our fellow man than on our own wallets? Americans have put the almighty dollar forward as the driving force of our nation for the last thirty years, and look where it's gotten us. Maybe we would be better as a people if more of us would be more humanitarian in general.

Fortunately, for those of us who are willing to go (back) to school and learn a new trade, there's a solid option that combines the desire to help your fellow human beings with the financial security of a decent wage: LPN training. LPN stands for Licensed Practical Nursing, and an LPN program is the doorway to one of the most fulfilling careers that's available in today's America.

There are generally three paths you can take to get into nursing. You can become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA), a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN), or an RN (Registered Nurse). A CNA program gets you to work quickly (within a month), but the pay is just above minimum wage, and you're at the bottom of the totem pole. An RN certification takes a long time to acquire, and the job of an RN is very demanding.

The LPN is the "happy medium", getting you to work after a couple of years of school and starting you in the mid-ranks where your wage is more than commensurate with your level of responsibility. Importantly, depending on the institution you go to work at, your starting wage can be median-level or above. You can earn your RN degree while acting as an LPN. Classes for RN certification often take place at night specifically to allow LPNs to work toward their RN.

LPN training can be part of a larger four-year degree, or you can go to a school that specialized in LPN classes. There are reasons to do both; if you're in it for the money and you want to jump into the workforce early (which means both a higher wage sooner and less school debt), you want the shortest, most brutal LPN program you can find. If you want a broader education and the opportunity to explore your options -- maybe find a specialization you can move into and take a few preparatory classes for it -- a more standard four-year degree can be better for you.

Either way, you're going to be going into a profession that simultaneously demands rigorous technical detail and encourages you to be empathic and helpful on a deeply personal level. If you love to help people through the toughest parts of their lives, there are few other occupations that offer you the opportunity like nursing.

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