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What is MLT and where can I be employed?

MLT is Medical Laboratory Technology. Medical Laboratory Technologists perform diagnostic testing on patient blood and body fluids, so that physicians can determine a patient diagnosis, recommend treatment/therapy, and follow patient treatments. Employment can be found in hospital clinical laboratories, urgent care facilities, doctor’s offices, large corporation labs such as Quest and LabCorp, and the American Red Cross among others.

What job skills are needed to be successful in the MLT program and as a professional?

To be successful in the MLT Program you must have a desire to work in a science-oriented field and have good attention to detail. You should also have good organizational skills, manual dexterity, be able to perform several tasks at one time, and have good written and conversational skills.

The medical lab technologist is unique in the healthcare setting because the MLT rarely or never works with patients in the clinical/hospital setting.

Is the MLT program accredited?

The MLT Program is fully accredited by the National Association for the Advancement of Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS).

Is admission to the program very competitive? How and when are admission decisions made?

Twenty-four (24) students will be admitted to the 2024 MLT Class. In 2023, there were approximately 18 qualified applicants to be considered. Criteria used in the selection of students includes: (1) interviews, if necessary, (2) TEAS entrance test results, if necessary, (3) overall G.P.A. Testing will begin in late May, if necessary and interviews will take place in June, if needed.  Please note that neither testing or interviews have been a part of the admission process for numerous year. Applicants are notified in writing of the action taken by the MLT Admissions Committee in late May. Meeting the admission criteria does not guarantee program admission nor does completion of the CSC Introduction to MLT. However, please note that in the past four years, we have not interviewed or tested for admission into the program as the number of qualified applicants did not exceed the total number of seats for the program.

What are the minimum requirements of the program?

College-level prerequisites must be completed with a grade of “C” or better:

ENG 111 and SDV 101–Orientation to Health Professions–completed by end of Spring 24.  Note: Transcripts will be evaluated for any transfer credits that can be substituted

Please note that CHM 101 is included in the fall semester of the MLT program & BIO 252 is included in the second year of the program, but are not considered prerequisites for the program.  You need to be aware of the following prerequisites for those courses.

  • BIO 252 (Nucleic Acid Methods)
    Notes: It must be completed within the five years prior to fall 2024. BIO 101 is a required prerequisite for Bio 252 course at VWCC (must have Bio 101/NAS 2 within 3 years, “C” or higher, to be allowed to register for Bio 252). Please note that successful completion of math units 1-5 or MDE 10 or Direct Enrollment into a college level math is a prerequisite for the BIO 101/NAS 2 at VWCC.
  • CHM 101–Prerequisite: Math units 1-5 or MDE 10 or Direct Enrollment into a college level math completed or tested out of within the last five years or completion of a higher level math course

Please note that applicants can complete either BIO 141 or BIO 252 and the pros and cons of either route will be explained at orientation, if accepted or contact the Program Director, Dr. Jeff Gillette for clarification.

Prerequisites do not have to be complete prior to an early application, but they must be complete by the end of spring 2024 to be eligible for the fall 2024 program.

A high school diploma or equivalent is required. You must have a cumulative college GPA of 2.0 or above at the end of the 2023 Fall semester. GED holders will be considered for admission if they completed all pre-requisite requirements (“C” or better). If your GPA is not above a 2.0, you are encouraged to seek advising from Ms. Rhonda Perdue about how this will impact your eligibility and how to improve your GPA. Please note that completion of developmental courses (typically grades of “P” or “S” are received, will not count towards your college GPA.

What steps do I need to take if I graduated high school from another country and cannot obtain my official high school transcript?

For applicants who graduated high school from a foreign country and it is not feasible for them to obtain an official (and translated) document, the applicant can complete this document (PDF) or write a statement that they are unable to obtain the official High School transcript because they graduated from another country and print your name, sign your name and include the seven digit student id number.

What would the impact be on program completion, for a person who does not have the COVID-19 vaccination?

Virginia Western Community College faculty and students must comply with the policies required by clinical facilities with which we have legal agreements. If a student refuses to comply with a clinical facility immunization and vaccination requirement, Virginia Western Community College will attempt, but cannot guarantee, to assign a student to an alternative clinical facility. A student will be placed in an alternative location only if it meets the educational objectives of Virginia Western Community College and program requirements for clinical placement. Faculty also must be available to appropriately supervise students at the clinical facility. Refusal to comply with a clinical facility immunization and vaccination requirement by a student in our health programs may impede your progress in the program or your ability to remain in the program.

Is there a waiting list? Are there classes I can take before entering the program?

There is not a waiting list. All applicants who meet the deadline and are minimally qualified will be considered for the program. The MLT program is science intensive, so some applicants elect to complete general support classes such as Chemistry 101 while they are being considered (grades must be a “C” or better). It should be understood that these general education or support courses are not the same as required prerequisites (addressed in a previous question). You may view a listing of curriculum requirements in the “MLT” section of the college catalog. Interested students are encouraged to work with one of the pre-MLT advisors (Woody, Levisy, or Perdue) to see if taking support classes is feasible based on their individual circumstances (taking in consideration whether they are students part-time, full-time, financial circumstances, holding a job, etc.) keeping in mind this is a restricted program and only 24 students are accepted once a year.

Can the program be taken at night or on a part-time basis?

The core MLT courses must be taken in sequence as outlined in the college catalog (including a summer semester). The core program coursework is only offered during the day. Clinical will begin the second eight weeks of the second spring semester and the internship will be the final summer semester.

Why are some support classes within the AAS MLT not covered by Financial Aid (FA) in the CSC: Introduction to MLT?

The CSC: Introduction to MLT consist of specific coursework that is designed to allow applicants to the MLT program to complete some of the courses required within the AAS and to also offer a job skill option to applicants in case of non-admittance to the program. Not all prerequisite and support classes are included in the CSC.  The BIO 252/251 or BIO 141/142 is not included in the CSC and the course options offer MTH 155 OR PHI 220.  If you are using FA to cover the cost of classes, FA will not cover the cost of both MTH 155 and PHI 220 nor will it cover cost of the BIO 252/251 or BIO 141/142 courses. If you wish to complete those courses prior to entry, you need to plan to pay for those courses out of pocket.  If you are accepted into the AAS MLT program, at that time, FA will then cover those courses.  The plan change for accepted students, to be placed into the AAS program from the CSC, typically occurs in late May or early June for the accepted students.

Who are the advisors for the MLT program? When and how do I contact them?

Ms. Rhonda Perdue provides advising about applying and preparing for the MLT curriculum for continuing VWCC students. Rhonda Perdue can assist with career planning and course selections and may be able to assist with preliminary information.  You may schedule an advising appointment, if you are a VWCC student, using Navigate with Ms. Perdue.  If you are a new student, please schedule your first advising appointment with a New Student Advisor, using Navigate (advising based on last name).

If you are a Mountain Gateway Community College Joint Venture applicant, you may contact Ms. Ann Courtney at or 540-863-2825 for assistance in course selection and planning.

Pam Woody and Jasmine Terry are the Health Professions Advisors and application processors in the HPAAO who process your file and determines current GPA, completes evaluation of previously completed course work and determines transfer of credit, and if the prerequisites are/can be met. They may be available to advise you after your academic application file is complete (all official transcripts have been received and reviewed), at which time you will receive an “Advising Letter”. The advising form letter will give you important details about your prerequisites, career support classes, transfer of credit, and etc.  Please note if you do not receive the Advising Letter, you will not be considered for the fall program as this indicates official document(s) are missing from your academic file in the Health Professions Advising and Applications Office. You need to verify receipt of all academic submissions if you do not receive the Advising Letter within four to five weeks upon submission of any application materials to Pam Woody in the School of Health Professions.  (Exception is March  through June prior to fall start due to program deadlines and acceptance occurring during those months.) For information on the application process, you may follow the checklist for application located under the “forms” section of each website or contact a team of advisors at

What process do I follow if I want to apply for a future year?

If you are interested in taking classes to prepare for future entry into the program, but you are unsure when you will be eligible, please submit the current MLT application form with the appropriate transcripts. This will allow us to help you plan and suggest proper courses to begin your studies. By submitting now you may benefit from advising by the Health Careers Information Specialist, who will be able to discuss your transcript(s), placement testing, prerequisites, support classes, etc. and complete any needed transfer evaluations for you (if applicable).  You may include a note that you are applying for a future year or mark through the application year on the actual program application and include the year you are planning to apply.

What is the policy on non-discrimination?

Applicants for admission to the Medical Laboratory Technology program are considered for class positions based on their ability to meet program admission standards, without regard to race, color, sex, age, religion, disability, national origin, or other non-merit factors.


Est. Tuition*: $
Credits: 71 Hours
Time: 2 Years

*Estimated cost reflects in-state rate and is subject to change


The cost of attendance is an estimate of the costs a student may have while at Virginia Western.

Click here for the cost of attendance for financial aid.

 Fralin Center HP339
New Students: Chapman Hall
Fax: 540-857-6640

Mailing address:
School of Health Professions
3091 Colonial Ave., SW
Roanoke, VA 24015


Jeffrey S. Gillette
Professor, Medical Lab Technology

A.A.S. – Monroe Community College, 1985
B.S. – Daemen College, 1987
M.S. – University of Rochester, 1993
Ph.D. – N.C. State University, 2000


Martha Sullivan, Dean