How to Become a Registered Nurse in South Carolina
Nursing careers are the ideal choice for anyone who has a passion for healthcare and the desire to take care of patients in various stages of health. Being a nurse is challenging, but brings many personal rewards. The opportunities for qualified registered nurses (RN) are expanding and will continue to thrive at an aggressive pace through the year 2020. Since nursing is based on the concept of patient care, it is the one area of healthcare that continues to thrive. The longevity of the aging population and advancement in healthcare options, including home care, is largely responsible for the additional opportunities in nursing.
The South Carolina Board of Nursing (SCBON) regulates the field of nursing in the state, including licensing and license renewals. The SCBON of nursing also approves nursing programs and recommends upgraded changes to meet the current demands of nursing.
To become an RN in South Carolina, candidates must complete at least an Associate’s degree in an approved nursing program from an accredited college or university. An Associate’s degree typically takes two years to complete. Nursing graduates may experience better and more profitable nursing opportunities with a Bachelor’s or Masters degree. AN RN candidate with an Associate’s degree who was employed as a certified nursing assistant (CNA), will find greater opportunities than an RN with an Associate’s degree and no other healthcare background.
The nursing graduate is required to take the National Council for Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed as a nurse. When the educational requirements have been completed, the candidate is required to apply to the SCBON to take the NCLEX. The application to test includes a criminal background and fingerprint check, a 2”x2” passport type photograph signed and dated, copy of a birth certificate and the appropriate fee. The applicant is also required to register with Pearson VUE Testing Services, the exam administrator. The Board will review the application and when it is determined to be complete, the applicant will be issued an authorization to test (ATT) and directed to schedule a date to take the exam. It is important to note South Carolina is a member of the Nurse Licensure Compact and to take the NCLEX exam, applicants must be residents of the state.
On the day of the exam, the applicant must provide the ATT and a valid form of identification to enter the testing site. Applicants will be notified of the exam results, and results are delivered as pass or fail, and if the applicant passes the exam an RN license will be issued. If the applicant does not pass the exam, the applicant will receive an application to take the test again. Applicants must observe a 45 day waiting period before the exam can be taken again. Applicants may take the exam every 45 days for up to a year.
Once licensed, RNs are required to renew their license every two years. Licenses expire every 30 April and must be renewed by the expiration date in order to remain active. A courtesy reminder will be sent to the RN 60 days prior to expiration, but not receiving the reminder does not excuse the RN from renewing their license in a timely manner. RNs are also required to meet one of the the renewal requirements which include completion of 30 approved contact hours provided by the board, maintaining a certification or re-certification by a national board, completion of an academic program in nursing or a related field or verification of competency and the number of hours practiced as certified by an employer.
The average RN salary in South Carolina is $62,000 annually. The average RN entry level salary for nursing graduates with little or no nursing experience is $42,000. RNs who reach a level of responsibility through years of experience or educational background may find an average salary of $98,000. Actual salary will often depend on type of facility where employed, geographic location, years of experience and nursing specialty if the RN so chooses to specialize.
RNs will find employment in hospitals, nursing homes and assisted care facilities, occupational healthcare centers, rehabilitative centers, schools, government facilities, sports leagues, visiting nurse and hospice organizations, private duty care, seasonal and recreational vacation venues, blood collection centers and insurance companies evaluating medical claims.
RN Training Programs in South Carolina
- Gain Knowledge and Skills While You Earn Your Nursing Degree at Fortis!
- PN RN Associate Degree Bridge Program
- Associate Degree in Nursing
- Practical Nursing
- • Liberty University’s online programs ranked in the top 10 out of more than 2,100 colleges & universities for academic quality, affordability, and accessibility.*
- 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level.**
- Transfer up to 90 credits into an undergraduate degree program.
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- **excludes licensure, certification, and some doctoral programs
- Master of Science in Nursing: Nursing Administration
- Master of Science in Nursing: Nurse Educator
- Which career path will you take – Business, Nursing, Education, Psychology? Something else? GCU offers more than 100 majors to get you started!
- Colangelo College of Business: Features more than 25 programs from the bachelor through the master's level, including several high-demand MBA programs and an accelerated accounting degree.
- College of Nursing and Health Care Professions: Rich 25-year history providing outstanding health care and nursing degree programs, including an RN to BSN program & master's in nursing degrees.
- College of Education: Whether you are looking to start or advance your career as a teacher or administrator, GCU offers bachelor’s and master’s in education degrees in key areas.
- College of Humanities and Social Sciences: Provides a job focused education and features a variety of programs from counseling and psychology to justice studies, history and English literature.
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- Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
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At South College we welcome students from all different stages of life and career. Whether you are pursing a degree for the first time, going back to school as an adult learner, or furthering your career with an advanced degree, our faculty and staff will partner with you to give your dreams direction.
- BS Nursing
CTU can help you connect to what matters most: a powerful professional network, faculty who are real-world professionals and innovative technology. And now several CTU degree programs are ranked by U.S. News Best Online Programs for 2015. Are you in?
- Master of Science in Nursing - Nursing Administration
With over 80 years of academic achievements, Jacksonville University is a traditional, longstanding institution consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of America's best colleges.
- MSN Clinical Nurse Educator
- Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
Experience the Rewards of Caring, With ECPI’s Medical Careers Institute, you can Earn Your Bachelor’s Degree in 2.5 Years or Your Associate’s Even Sooner through Our Year-Round Schedule!
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- Nursing (RN-BSN) - Bachelor's
- Nursing - Master's
- BSN completion program for Registered Nurses is available entirely online.
- The RN to BSN program is designed to help students advance their career, or prepare for post-graduate opportunities.
- Courses teach modern health assessment and treatment methods, how to evaluate potential disease or injury, and more.
- Regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
- Bachelor of Science in Nursing (RN to BSN)
- Current RNs can choose from RN to BSN or RN to MSN online programs
- RN-to-BSN program offers courses in Illness and Disease Management, Principles of Assessment, and Holistic Professional Nursing
- RN to MSN specializations include Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology and more
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- South University brings over 115 years of achievement and tradition to a supportive, online classroom
- Specialization in Nurse Administrator (MSN)
- Nursing (RN to BSN)
- RN to Master of Science in Nursing with a specialization in Family Nurse Practitioner (RN-MSN)
- And more...