Ocean County College Nursing Program questions


I've completed the TEAS, finished the prerequisites, and start nursing courses in January. My problem is I don't know if I will be an RN or an lpn. You graduate with your associates and sit for an exam (NCLEX?). I thought this means you're an rn but someone told me "no you need a bachelor's to be an rn so you're just a nurse. Not an rn or an lpn - just a nurse" which makes no sense to me because I thought you had to be one or the other.

So that's my question. When you get an associates in nursing from occ are you an rn or lpn and what kind of jobs can you get upon graduation? If I pursue a bachelor's then what would that make me and what else would I be qualified for then? My ultimate goal is to work in a NICU, can you do that after leaving occ (and getting experience obviously) or is additional schooling needed?

JustBeachyNurse, LPN

1 Article; 13,952 Posts

Specializes in Complex pedi to LTC/SA & now a manager. Has 13 years experience.

Entry to practice for an RN is to graduate from a professional nursing program with a diploma (hospital based and very few left), associates, or bachelor's degree, meet BoN licensing requirements and pass the NCLEX-RN.

OCC only offers a professional nursing associates degree. So yes this program will lead to eligibility for NCLEX RN

The hospitals in the area are BSN preferred. Especially the two with NICUs in Monmouth county. They offer nurse externships but only for BSN students. OCC does have a RN to BSN program on campus via Kean University though.


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I'm also starting my nursing courses this January at OCC. The OCC nursing program is a program that is to prepare you for the NCLEX. Once you graduate and pass the NCLEX, you will be and RN with an ADN. If you continued through OCC/KEAN RN to BSN program, then you will be an RN with a BSN. The only difference is the degree. :) Good luck!