There are many considerations that go into choosing a nursing school – the types of programs that it offers, the cost of tuition, the convenience of its campus, the required time commitment, as well as whether or not it is an "accredited" nursing school.
Accreditation may be a new item on your agenda, but it is certainly an important one to consider as you begin researching prospective nursing schools in Connecticut. Nursing school accreditation can serve as a gateway to greater job opportunities, higher educational programs, and better access to financial aid throughout your college career. It can also give you a leg up upon entering the nursing field.
What is Accreditation?
Accreditation shows that a school has been approved by an official educational board or agency, and therefore meets all the formal requirements set by it – including high standards of curricula, teaching, school facilities, and overall academic excellence. When you choose an accredited nursing school, you can rest assured that your program is of high quality and reputation. Accreditation of an institution typically means that graduates will qualify for admission to higher or more specialized schools down the road (for example, if you decide to attend graduate school later in your nursing career). Accredited nursing schools are also known to train highly qualified, credible candidates for professional practice.
Accreditation can be given on a regional, national, or international basis. And, there are thousands of different accrediting agencies out there today that can accredit nursing schools.
Stone Academy in Connecticut, for example, is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES), a nationally recognized accrediting agency by the U.S. Department of Education. Our Practical Nursing Program, more specifically, is also approved by the State of Connecticut Department of Higher Education, the State of Connecticut Board of Nursing Examiners, and is a member of the Connecticut League for Nursing.
Why Attend an Accredited Nursing School?
If you are considering becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) or Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) in Connecticut, it is recommended that you attend an accredited nursing school that is also approved by your state. Doing so will put you at a great advantage against other candidates, whether you are looking to further your nursing degree or jump right into the nursing workforce upon graduation.
To help you in your search for the right LPN or CNA program, Stone Academy has compiled the top reasons why you should attend a Connecticut-approved and accredited nursing school:
1. An accredited school offers a high-quality nursing curriculum.
Accreditation, to put it simply, is a seal of approval that ensures a nursing school is reputable and offers its students a high-quality education. If you choose to enroll in an accredited nursing school, you can be confident that your program is established, respected, and recognized among healthcare employers throughout the state.
It can be quite the process for an institution to receive accreditation – the accrediting agency must go through a rigorous review of the school before approving it, while the school’s faculty and staff must conduct their own, ongoing self-studies and self-reviews to maintain accreditation. With all the checks and balances that go into this process, there’s no doubt you can trust in the quality of an approved nursing program.
2. Accredited schools have a proven track record for graduating skilled nurses.
Due to the great quality of education offered by accredited nursing schools, graduates are typically well-prepared for jobs upon completion of their programs. Generally speaking, accredited nursing schools are required to meet and maintain high standards of student retention, graduation, and job placement rates. By choosing an accredited diploma program, you can be sure that you will qualify for a range of entry-level nursing positions following graduation.
3. Your diploma will be of higher value to prospective employers.
Attending an accredited nursing school can give you more mobility in terms of your professional goals. Employers are always looking at the school you attended, and may evaluate your level of career readiness based on that factor alone. Graduating from a reviewed and approved LPN school, for instance, will show employers you have the education and training needed to succeed in the practical nursing field.
4. You will qualify for federal financial aid.
If you are planning on applying for financial aid, be aware that only schools accredited by the U.S. Department of Education can participate in federal financial aid programs. Stone Academy does accept FASFA applicants; prospective students can apply for federal financial aid online at www.fafsa.ed.gov.
Ensuring that the school you choose is approved by the state, as well as by the U.S. Department of Education, is vital to your success as a nurse down the road. For more information on the approved nursing programs at Stone Academy, do not hesitate to call 800-585-1315. You can also apply online or request more information here!