The pediatric nursing program focuses mainly on children’s medical needs. Most graduate level nursing programs offer the opportunity to focus more on pediatric nursing, but there are also undergraduate- level nursing programs that have course work related to this field. There are nursing schools that offer a combined bachelors and masters’ degree in pediatric nursing field.
How to choose a Pediatric Nursing School
For those students who would like to take the pediatric nursing program, it is always important to ensure that the school you select offer all the specific courses that deal with children’s medical care. Some of these courses include:
- Pediatric physiology
- Pediatric health and development assessment
- Pre-adolescent health care concepts
- Health systems policy and planning
- Pediatric care management and clinical work
If you are interested in offering care to specific types of groups for example urban at-risk youth, then you need to find a pediatric program which has interdisciplinary study in either psychology or sociology. If you are interested in other fields like policy development and education outreach, then the programs that offer courses in health education or public health will prove beneficial.
Apart from providing the relevant course work, a good pediatric nursing school should offer internship opportunities to all its students. This will enable all the pediatric students’ hands-on learning experience when they get to practice with children in a medical setting under the watchful eyes of more experienced personnel. When they gain such experience in a clinic, a doctor’s office or a fully functioning hospital, they may in the long term get employed in the same places.
As an aspiring student you also need to choose those schools that have affiliations with local health care systems or hospitals. The good thing is that many nursing schools have an on-campus teaching hospital which enables students to gain clinical experience very effectively. Those schools affiliated with large healthcare systems and hospitals are in a position to offer more diverse learning experiences for pediatric nursing students which is very important as this is a very delicate field.
The best pediatric schools are also those that will assist the pediatric student nurses to get licensed. This is because only licensed pediatricians are allowed to offer their services. Most graduate level nursing courses require all the applicants to have valid nursing licenses. The best nursing pediatric nursing school should therefore be able to offer preparation and support for students to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) which is the standard exam for nurses seeking licensure.
Below are the major pediatric nursing schools that offer quality education in the United States.
- Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis
- University of Cincinnati-Main Campus
- University of Iowa
- DePaul University
- University of Pennsylvania
- University of Toledo
- CUNY Hunter College
- Boston College
- Youngstown State University
- Emory University
- Vanderbilt University
- CUNY Lehman College
- Villanova University
- University of Rochester
- Seton Hall University
- Catholic University of America
- Xavier University
- Loma Linda University
- University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center
- Medical University of South Carolina