When talking to prospective nursing students, we hear it all the time, “There’s no way you can learn to be a nurse online.” We agree! Online learning is just one part of Northeastern University’s accelerated nursing program. While online learning is an integral component, our nursing students put into practice what they’re learning in hands-on skills labs and –most importantly – with real patients in clinical rotations with our clinical partners.
Why Clinicals Are Important
In a traditional nursing program, students don’t see an actual patient for a long time. Traditional students sit in a classroom, listening to lectures. When they finally see a real patient, they have already invested a lot of time into becoming a nurse. What if, after all that time, they realize they don’t want to be a nurse?
In our accelerated BSN program, students are observing professionals interact with patients as early as three weeks in! Our ABSN students practice the skills they learn online alongside clinical instructors and preceptors who assist them in patient care. No, they’re not starting IVs in their third week, but they’re certainly interacting with patients.
Our students are able to figure out in the first month if nursing is the right career for them. Our ABSN site director in Charlotte, Megan Kirsch, says it best, “Wouldn’t you rather know in your first semester than your last semester if nursing is right for you?”
How Clinicals Benefit Students in the Long Run
In addition to practicing nursing skills in a real-world setting, our ABSN students are able to “find their fit” in nursing. Most students begin the program with an idea of what specialty they want to work in after completing the program, but many change their minds after completing their clinical rotations. To help students sort this out sooner, they complete clinical rotations in the following specialty areas:
- Acute Care
- Adult Health
- Intensive Care
- Long-Term Care
- Mental Health
- Public and Community Health
Not only do they “find their fit,” our ABSN students also graduate confident in their nursing skills and abilities – thanks to all the hands-on practice they receive in our clinical partners’ facilities and skills labs. When Megan speaks with students, they’re often worried they aren’t going to be prepared for real-world nursing.
“Having clinical partnerships with huge names in North Carolina puts them at ease because they know they are going to get a quality hands-on experience,” she says.
Clinicals Are Your Foot in the Door
Many of our ABSN students view their clinical rotations as a long job interview, and with good reason – students often receive job offers from their clinical placements. Clinical rotations offer students patient-care experiences, but they also offer valuable, in-depth exposure to potential employers. Megan says, “It gives them a foot in the door for a potential job.”
Most people can handle the job they were hired for, but it’s figuring out the little things that often differ from employer to employer: What’s the process for charting? How do you request paid time off? What EMR system do we use? Who do I go to with questions? Now, imagine it’s your first day at a new job and you already know the answers to those questions. Wouldn’t that take some of the stress away?
“Every hospital has its own system; you have a leg up,” Megan says. “Clinical rotations give you a chance to see how everything works – from tracking time, to charting, to dosing. You learn the ins and outs of not just the job, but the clinical partner, too.
Nursing in North Carolina
Bachelor’s-educated nurses are greatly needed in North Carolina, and Northeastern University’s ABSN program aims to address that need. While other programs are constrained by a limited number of spots, our ABSN program offers qualified students more seats and more starts, providing hospitals more quickly with the BSN-educated nurses they need.
“We’re fulfilling the need within the hospital by providing them with BSN-educated, practice-ready nurses,” Megan says. “They can recruit from their own backyard.”
Meet Our North Carolina Clinical Partners
Our accelerated BSN students complete their clinical rotations at leading health care facilities in Charlotte. Get to know our clinical partners in North Carolina:
Caring for patients since 1940, Atrium Health, formerly Carolina HealthCare System, employs more than 70,000 people at 1,500 care sites in North Carolina and Georgia. In 2020, Atrium Health’s Carolinas Medical Center was recognized by U.S. News & World Report as the best hospital in the Charlotte metro region for the fourth straight year. And Atrium’s Levine Cancer Institute is named among the best in the nation for cancer care.
Novant Health doesn’t just care for patients in North Carolina. With 640 sites in North Carolina, Virginia, South Carolina, and Georgia, Novant Health aims to help patients and communities throughout the region.
Why Study Nursing in Charlotte?
Charlotte is growing – fast. Nicknamed “the biggest small town” in the southeast, Charlotte offers everything a nursing student would want and need from a big city, but with a small town feel. According to Forbes, in 2019 Charlotte was among the top 10 best cities for careers and business.
Charlotte’s health care sector is crucial to its economy, as one in nine of its employees (more than 120,000 people) work in healthcare or life sciences, according to the Charlotte Regional Business Alliance. The bottom line is that the healthcare industry in Charlotte is booming and will continue to grow. Who wouldn’t want the opportunity to attend a nationally renowned nursing school, gain experience with leading clinical partners, and enjoy all the beautiful city of Charlotte has to offer?
If you are interested in becoming a nursing student in Northeastern University’s Accelerated BSN program in Charlotte, contact our admissions team today!