Morgantown Nursing Program Highlight

We had the pleasure of speaking with the Dean of Nursing, Dr. Lisa Onega, and the nursing department at West Virginia Junior College Morgantown to gain insight into what our nursing students can expect from the Nursing program.

West Virginia Junior College Morgantown takes great pride in preparing our nursing students to provide quality care to our local communities.
To ensure they are prepared, Lisa says, “Nursing students use the nursing process to promote the health of individuals, families, and communities. Their studies include foundational arts and science classes as well as nursing classes. Many nursing courses have laboratory and clinical experiences that enable students to apply theoretical knowledge to foster health, healing, and hope. Nursing students also learn to collaborate with other healthcare professionals to advance individual and societal health.” In addition to nursing studies and laboratory and clinical experiences, faculty prepare their nursing students throughout the program to take the NCLEX-RN~ after graduation. Lisa confirms that the NCLEX-RN is a test that measures graduates’ abilities to provide safe nursing care. Upon successful completion of NCLEX-RN, a state grants graduates a license, and they become registered nurses.

Once becoming a registered nurse, graduates can be prepared for a rewarding career and an array of opportunities and paths. Nurses can be found in numerous settings such as hospitals, clinics, doctors’ offices, and more. Lisa concurs that one of the exceptional things about nursing is the range of career options and that nurses may work with individuals, groups, or populations. Nurses may work in in-patient, outpatient, or community settings. She continues to say, “Regardless of the specialty or setting, everyday nurses improve health and lives of other people, and that is what we want to bring to West Virginia and our surrounding states.”

Lisa frequently answers the questions “how does one become a successful nurse?” and “can I do this?” She tells them that to be a successful nurse; one must first be a successful nursing student. She tells her students, “Nursing is a challenging and demanding discipline. Therefore, you need to put in the effort and be self-disciplined throughout your learning experience. Here at the West Virginia Junior College’s Morgantown campus, you can expect to receive the training and guidance needed to become a successful registered nurse as it is our goal to educate, mentor, and guide each nursing student to achieve his or her potential.”

However, it does take a unique individual to be a nurse. We asked our nursing department what characteristics a student needs to be a successful nursing student and later a successful nurse. They believe that successful students and nurses possess the characteristics of honesty, integrity, accountability, confidentiality, professionalism, time management skills, critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and organizational skills. In addition, nursing students have to be flexible and willing to learn as nursing is continually changing and always strives to be up to date on the newest technology. Lisa adds, “And most importantly, nurses have to be self-reflective, empathic, compassionate, and kind. You want to show true care for your patients.”

To learn more about WVJC’s Nursing program, request information here!

~Passing the NCLEX-RN exam is required to become a Registered Nurse.

Morgantown Nursing Program Highlight

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Healthcare employment opportunities continue to rise.  Nursing, specifically, is expected to see better than average growth over the next decade.  “Employment of registered nurses is projected to grow 12 percent from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations. Growth will occur for a number of reasons, including an increased emphasis on preventive care; increasing rates of chronic conditions, such as diabetes and obesity; and demand for healthcare services from the baby-boom population, as this group leads longer and more active lives.” (BLS 1)

The BLS is a great resource to learn about occupations of all types. When considering a new career or career move, though, there are a ton of other factors to consider. If nursing is on your list, the options are nearly infinite. Nurses work in all walks of healthcare, have degree paths available from associate to doctoral level, can work in virtually anywhere in the world, and are always in high demand. Given all of this, if you are heading down the nursing path, it is helpful to know what your goals are.

While the possibilities of the career are nearly infinite, the training and curriculum are fairly specific. We will focus our time here on the program at WVJC Morgantown. However, it should be noted that all programs in West Virginia are governed by the same body so the requirements to take your NCLEX certification are similar. Nursing programs have a very specific set of requirements to follow and this is part of what makes entry into a nursing program so coveted!

WVJC’s Nursing program has enjoyed quite a bit of student success over the last several years! This success earned our program a #2 ranking in the state of WV in 2019 (by registerednurse.org, which is an independent site designed to be a resource for those looking into the field- link below).

So far we know what the career prospects are like, how the training is set up, and what WVJC is doing. So, what does it take to get into and complete an 18 month Associate Degree program? Grit.  At least according to Nursing Program Director, Julie Whetsell. “If you look at the definition of the word Grit, it is described as strength of character, courage, and resolve. Which I can’t help but equate to the definition of a great nurse. A great nurse is a patient advocate, an outstanding communicator, able to hold their own in a trying environment, and extremely knowledgeable in their craft yet not afraid to ask questions. Nurses proverbially get pushed down a lot, and every time a nurse will show that resolve and get back up to keep caring for their patients. It is not a profession to be taken lightly, and neither is nursing school. A nursing student needs that same grit, in fact, I expect it. If they embody those qualities and are willing to buckle down and learn, becoming a nurse through our program is just 18 months away which is an amazing opportunity.”

If you have now determined that you have the “grit” needed to complete a challenging nursing program, you should know that WVJC’s program is a direct admittance program! There is no pre-nursing education coursework at all. If you meet the requirements, and are selected, you will enter directly into the Nursing program. This is one benefit of a short-term program like ours. Another interesting note about WVJC’s Nursing program is the schedule. Classes occur during evening and weekend hours. This gives students the flexibility during the day to study, do homework, work, etc.

At this point, you may be starting to wonder how to get the admissions process started for our program. Request information here!

References

BLS 1 https://www.bls.gov/ooh/healthcare/registered-nurses.htm

Link below https://www.registerednursing.org/state/west-virginia/#rankings

Registered Nursing Program – Bridgeport Campus

WVJC Bridgeport is set to complete our second six-week term of WVJC’s Nursing program! It’s been an exciting time for our campus as we’ve added an RN training program that prepares students to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses’ (NCLEX-RN)* exam to WVJC Bridgeport’s list of available course options.  WVJC Bridgeport started its first cohort of 40 nursing students on June 29th, 2020. Not only do we love to see people who are passionate about learning to care for those around them, but WVJC’s nursing program also helps fill a void in our community.

Currently, there are approximately 3 million registered nurses in the US with more than 5,000 employment vacancies. The Board of Labor and Statistics estimates more than 500,000 RNs will be needed by 2030 to cover the medical needs of the country and vacancies caused by RNs retiring. In WV alone, more than 2,000 new RNs will be needed by 2025 to meet the state’s health care needs.

WVJC Bridgeport’s Nursing program lasts 18 months, with classes starting each June. Classes are Monday through Friday with scheduling to assist students who are actively working. Those who have completed Practical Nursing programs** have the opportunity to test out of several classes and can potentially achieve their nursing degree in as little as one year.  If you have a desire to become a Registered Nurse, request information here!

*Passing the NCLEX – RN exam is required to become a Registered Nurse.
**See catalog for detailed eligibility criteria.
Credits may not be transferable. Individual results may vary. Information on this slide was current at the time of publishing.