Edmonds Community College to offer new nursing program

Edmonds CC logoEdmonds Community College is launching a new nursing program.

The college currently is accepting applications for the upcoming spring quarter for its Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) program.

The new program has been tailored to a specific group of people, according to Kyra McCoy, who has been hired as the nursing program director.

The program is designed for “people currently working in health care, who want to go and continue their education but who can’t afford to quit work and go full time,” McCoy said. “Lots of nursing programs are full-time, face-to-face, on-campus programs.”

The seven-quarter, part-time program will take 21 months for students to complete and graduates will receive a certificate of proficiency in practical nursing.

“We’re taking a full-time program and making it part-time,” McCoy said.

Another unique feature of the program is that lecture classes will be taught online and in hybrid classes (online with some classroom time). Online nursing classes are not common in the Pacific Northwest, McCoy said.

Students, however, will get plenty of hands-on training as opposed to just an online experience. Labs will take place on campus one or two evenings each week and at clinical assignments in long-term care facilities, acute care hospitals and community agencies.

“You’re part of a community, meeting every single week on campus with your teachers and classmates,” McCoy said. “You have lab and clinicals together. You get that support that you need in a program like this.”

Edmonds Community College previously offered a LPN program in partnership with Lake Washington Institute of Technology but that program stopped accepting new students in 2010 and was discontinued. The final group of students admitted to that program actually graduated last December.

Many of the students expected to enroll in the new program likely will be similar to those who were in the satellite program with Lake Washington. They may be single-parents, who cannot afford to quit work. McCoy also expects the incoming class to be ethnically diverse.

“This particular group of students was underserved,” McCoy said. “They are interested in college and in the profession of nursing. They are incredibly diverse. My classroom looked like the U.N. They are looking for the chance to work in the health care profession.”

Upon completion of the program, students then must take and pass the N-CLEX PN examination to be licensed by the state as a practical nurse.

“The key is once they have this LPN, they can more than double their salary,” McCoy said.

Both Shoreline Community College and Everett Community College have well-established Registered Nurse (RN) programs. Edmonds Community College specifically looked to serve a different student clientele.

“That was a big consideration in what we decided to do,” McCoy said. “We felt that this particular population we were targeting, most of them already work in long-term care.”

Students have the option of taking classes that allow them to continue their studies in RN programs.

The deadline to apply for the nursing program is Jan. 31 with a Jan. 15 financial aid deadline. An informational session is scheduled for 7-9 p.m., Jan. 16 in Woodway Hall, room 106. Spring quarter starts April 1.

For an online application see www.edcc.edu/lpn. For more information call 425-640-1017.

The program is designed for students who hold a valid CNA license in Washington State and who are currently working in a direct patient care profession such as nursing assistant, medical assistant or surgical technician.

The Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission approved Edmonds Community College to offer the training.

Information from an Edmonds Community College press release was used in this story.

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