Do you want to become a registered nurse and you’re not sure where to start from?
First, it is important you know that becoming a nurse is quite a rewarding and fulfilling career path.
A registered nursing professional will find satisfactory career positions in clinical, research, education and management roles. These positions include settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, non-governmental organizations and academia.
Now that you can see the exciting career that lies ahead of you, the next question you’re probably asking is, ‘what qualifications do I need?’
You’ll need to have completed your secondary school education and successfully passed your senior secondary certification examination with 5 credits in not more than two sittings. These include: English, Physics, Chemistry and Biology and any other subjects.
The duration of study to become a registered nurse is three years.
Additionally, you can choose to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Nursing Science which requires 5 credits in your senior secondary certificate exam which include Mathematics, English, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. You must have obtained these credits in not more than 2 sittings.
In this case, the duration of the programme is 5 years. At the end of your programme, you would proceed to any of the health institutions approved by the nursing council for one year of internship.
This Bachelor of Nursing science degree is usually awarded with certifications as a registered nurse and midwife. Some universities include the public health nurse registration certificate.
So the next question you’re probably asking is, ‘which is the best school to study nursing?’
That’s a bit of a difficult question, because many schools of nursing are exceptional in their own way. But first, you’ll need to know if you just want to get trained via the school of nursing route where you would be given a diploma in nursing after which can practice as a registered nurse.
On the other hand, if you choose to go through the university route, you would be spending an additional three years (5 years + 1 year of internship) but you would be awarded a degree in nursing science.
Based on our data, there are over 70 approved schools of nursing in Nigeria and you can find them in every state of the country.
On the other hand, there are 21 universities that offer the Bachelor of Nursing science degree. These include state universities, federal universities and private universities.
The state universities include: Abia State University (Abia), Ambrose Alli University (Edo), Delta State University (Delta), Ebonyi State University (Ebonyi) and Evans Enwerem University (Imo), Ladoke Akintola University of Science and Technology (Osun) and Niger Delta University (Bayelsa).
The federal universities offering this degree include: Bayero University (Kano), Obafemi Awolowo University (Osun), University of Benin (Edo), University of Calabar (Cross River), University of Ibadan (Oyo), University of Ilorin (Kwara), University of Jos (Plateau), University of Lagos (Lagos), University of Nigeria (Enugu), University of Maiduguri (Borno) and University of Port Harcourt (Rivers).
The private universities offering the degree in nursing science include: Afe Babalola University, Babcock University, and Igbinedion University.
On a final note, in choosing the right path in becoming a certified nurse, it is important you know that the system of nursing education has evolved from the hospital based school of nursing training to the University based degree in nursing science which places nursing education at par with the globally accepted levels.