May 21, 2024  
2023-2024 College Catalog and Student Handbook 
    
2023-2024 College Catalog and Student Handbook

Practical Nursing Certificate (G3 Eligible)


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CIP Code: 51.3901
Length: 3 Semesters (one year)

G3 Tuition Assistance

Purpose

The purpose of the Practical Nursing Certificate (PN) curriculum is to prepare students to provide safe and effective nursing care for clients with common health problems as defined by the role of the practical nurse, as well as to collaborate effectively with all members of the healthcare team. Graduates will provide clinically competent, contemporary care that meets the needs of individuals across the lifespan, families, and communities. Upon successful completion of the curriculum, the graduate will be eligible to apply to take the NCLEX-PN® examination leading to licensure as a practical nurse.

Occupational Objectives

Employment opportunities for the LPN include nursing and staff posi­tions in clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, health departments, home health agencies, clinics, prisons, and physicians’ offices. * Gainful Employment Data  

Admission Requirements and Prerequisites

In addition to the requirements for admission to the college, the applicant must meet the fol­lowing prerequisites for admission to the practi­cal nursing program:

  • Graduation from high school or satisfactory completion of the General Education Diploma (GED).
  • Completion of college placement tests in reading, writing, and mathematics or multiple measures or other assessment equivalents.
  • Completed all applicable developmental courses (Readiness to enroll in MTH 154  and ENG 111 );
  • Completion of one unit of high school biolo­gy or the college equivalent BIO 101  with a grade of “C” or better.
  • Submit all official college transcripts to Admissions and Records. No transfer courses will be accepted unless they are from a regionally accredited school. 
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.0.
  • The Kaplan Nursing School Admissions Test within 3 years with a minimum total score of 45% average or greater and no item less than 35%.  The test may be taken up to two times in one academic year. 
  • Complete and submit an application to the nursing program by the designated time in the semester preceding the start of the program (see nursing link on the RCC webpage for more information).
  • If offered a seat in the practical nursing program, the student must accept or deny admission by the stated due date.  If the student fails to respond, the seat will be forfeited. 
  • Students that are offered a seat are considered conditionally placed in the program until successful completion of a background check and drug test. Instructions are given during orientation.

Guaranteed Admission Status

Students may be admitted to the PN program with guaranteed admission by completing the Career Studies Certificate, Pre-Nursing in its entirety by the end of the application period with a curricular GPA of 3.0 or higher, with no repeated courses in the curriculum and no less than a “C” in any course. Grades must be posted on your transcripts. No student is eligible for guaranteed admission if any curricular courses are missing or incomplete.

Students applying via guaranteed admission must also have completed the following:

  • High School diploma or GED
  • All placement testing, multiple measures, or other assessments, as well as developmental coursework as described above,
  • Met all of the deadlines for completion and submission of the nursing program application(s). The Virginia Board of Nursing has the authority to deny licensure to any applicant who has violated any of the provisions of 54.1-3007 of the Code of Virginia. Any student entering the nursing program who has committed any illegal offenses other than minor traffic violations should discuss these matters with the nursing program head for clarification prior to admission. In all cases, the recommendation of the admission committee is the final determinant for admission to the Practical Nursing Program. All admission requirements must be completed prior to entry into the program. In all cases, the recommendation of the admission committee is the final determinant for admission to the Practical Nursing Program. All admission requirements must be completed prior to entry into the program. 


The Practical Nursing Program is open to men and women who provide evidence of interest, motivation, and aptitude in the area of health care, and especially in direct patient care.

Program Requirements:

  • Attend orientation program in the semester prior to the start of clinical nursing courses.
  • Health Records Requirement:  Physical examination, including immunizations, must be completed prior to the start of the first clinical nursing course. The required medical forms will be provided at orientation or during the first week of classes for high school and early college students.  Applicants must be free of any physical or mental condition that might adversely affect their acceptance or performance as nurses. More detailed information is provided in the Nursing Student Handbook.
  • CPR certification (American Heart Association, BLS for the Health Care Provider) is required of all students prior to entry into the first clinical course.  Information, including a schedule of CPR classes, will be provided at nursing program orientation or may be found on the website under Workforce Programs.
  • Maintain a grade of “C” or higher in all courses in the curriculum.
  • Maintain professionalism in both campus and clinical settings, especially in attitude and responsibility. Failure to meet this requirement can result in termination from the program.
  • Students are responsible for purchasing the required clinical uniforms and name tags through the college’s designated supplier.
  • Standardized tests are integrated throughout the nursing program. The cost will be the responsibility of the student.
  • Conviction of a felony, misdemeanor, or any offense substantially related to the qualifications, functions, and duties of a registered nurse may constitute grounds for not allowing a candidate to take the licensing exam. This decision is made by the State Board of Nursing. For questions regarding this issue, call the Virginia Board of Nursing at 804-367-4515.  
  • Nursing students must be in good standing from all previous healthcare employers. Students may be denied clinical placement based on previous work history and thus, cannot be entered into or possibly complete the nursing program.
  • Nursing students enrolled in clinical nursing courses are required to have malpractice insurance. Students may purchase malpractice insurance from independent providers.
  • Students are responsible for following the clinical policy for safe handling of biohazards and utilizing appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) in the prevention of blood-borne pathogens and communicable diseases. Additionally, students are responsible for employing appropriate ergonomics to prevent injury. Students will be responsible for medical costs for any injury received while in a clinical setting, including injuries for which testing is required by clinical agencies. Rappahannock Community College is not responsible for student injuries in a clinical or lab setting.
  • The College does not assume responsibility for accidents/incidents which occur in clinicals, nor does it provide any student health services. The student assumes financial responsibility for accidents/incidents requiring medical attention. Students will sign an Assumption of Risk form at the beginning of the program.
  • Some agencies require health insurance coverage as a condition of attending clinical.  Students are advised to have health insurance in place.  

Program Progression:

  • The student must complete all support courses either preceding or concurrently with the appropriate nursing course, as indicated in the curriculum plan.
  • The student is required to complete a sequence of courses and learning experiences provided at the college and selected community agencies. The nursing faculty will observe and evaluate the student’s performance in nursing and with direct patient care in the clinical sites.
  • A student must obtain permission from the program head to continue in the nursing program under the following conditions: 1) receiving a grade below “C” or 2) withdrawal from a nursing course. In accordance with VCCS policy, a student cannot enroll in the same course more than twice without administrative approval. Additional policies for the program are listed in the Nursing Student Handbook. The handbook is given to all entry-level nursing students and is available online via Canvas to admitted students.
  • Clinical agencies reserve the right to deny access to or dismiss a student from their agency at any time with due cause.
  • The student releases the hospital, its agents, and its employees from any liability for any injury or death to himself or damage to his property arising out of the clinical agreement or use of the hospital’s facilities.

Approvals and USDOE Standards:

The Certificate in Practical Nursing Program at Rappahannock Community College is approved by the Virginia Board of Nursing

9960 Mayland Drive, Suite 300
Richmond, Virginia 23233
Phone: 804-367-4515
Web: https://www.dhp.virginia.gov/nursing/

The Practical Nursing Program at Rappahannock Community College is not nationally accredited by the NCEA or ACEN. 

USDOE Standards 
Pursuant to United States Department of Education (US DOE) regulation 34 CFR 668.43 (a) (5) (v), the Rappahannock Community College Certificate Practical Nursing (PN) Program provides the following information for all prospective and current students:

The Rappahannock Community College PN program meets all Virginia Board of Nursing requirements for pre-licensure nursing education programs in the Commonwealth of Virginia.  In addition, the Rappahannock Community College PN program meets all requirements for practical nursing education per the Virginia Board of Nursing and is a fully approved program.

The Commonwealth of Virginia participates with 32 other states in the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) National Licensing Compact (NLC) to allow nurses licensed in one state to provide nursing care across state lines in other compact states.  The Uniform Licensing Requirements (ULRs) are found at: https://www.ncsbn.org/NLC_ULRs.pdf.

States currently in the NLC are found at: https://www.ncsbn.org/nlcmemberstates.pdf.  Prospective and current students are strongly encouraged to evaluate all state requirements in jurisdictions where they intend to practice nursing.  A list of all state requirements is found at:  https://www.ncsbn.org/14730.htm. Rappahannock Community College has not determined if the PN program meets all of the requirements of any other states.  The preliminary evaluation of state requirements is found in the attached table.   

This statement serves to meet the USDOE regulation until further notice.

Curriculum


Total Minimum Credits: 44


1 BIO 141  and BIO 142  may replace BIO 145 

2 SDV 100  is accepted if taken prior to entering the Certificate curriculum in Practical Nursing. 

Credit for prior learning is accepted with a valid and current American Heart Association CPR for Health Care Professionals card.

Financial and Program Requirements


Financial and Program Requirements

Students are responsible for providing their own transportation to and from the various clinical and social agencies used throughout the program for observational and direct care learning experiences. In addition to college tuition, the student will need to purchase textbooks, uniforms (including white hose or socks and shoes), a nursing pin, and a stethoscope. The student will also have to pay fees for achievement and other standardized testing associated with the program and will need to have a watch with a second hand, a penlight, and bandage scissors. 

All students entering the program will be required to undergo a background check (except high school students) and drug screening prior to their admission to the clinical sites. 

Estimated Cost

Students are responsible for providing their own transportation to and from the various clinical and social agencies used throughout the program for observational and direct care learning experiences. In addition to college tuition, the student will need to purchase textbooks, uniforms (including white hose and shoes), a nursing pin, and a stethoscope. The student will also have to pay fees for achievement and other standardized testing associated with the program and will need to have a watch with a second hand, a pen light, and bandage scissors. 

Item Estimate Cost
Tuition and Fees (44 credits X $160.65*) $7,068.60
Uniform and Shoes 200
Books and other supplemental programs 1000
Achievement Tests (Kaplan) 475
Clinical Supplies 200
Malpractice Insurance 58
Criminal Background Checks/ Drug Screens/Document Tracker 150
Medical 500
Graduation and Licensure 500
Travel to Clinical Agencies Variable
Total Estimated Costs $10.633.55

* Tuition and Fees are subject to change and based on in-state tuition rates.   

All students entering the program will be required to undergo a background check (except high school students) and drug screening prior to their admission to the clinical sites.

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