Practical Nursing (LPN)

Did you know that Practical Nursing at Virginia Western Community College prepares you to gain employment in hospitals, acute care, long-term care, schools, parish nursing, physician’s offices, and other community opportunities? Begin your journey today to a career that provides entry into the exciting and rewarding world of health care.

If you are interested in applying to the VWCC Practical Nursing program, we encourage you to explore the information linked in the left menu to learn more about the process. We offer both a spring and a fall admission for the eighteen month program. Once your application and transcripts have been reviewed, our office can provide academic guidance to help prepare students for possible entry into this program.  If you need further assistance, you may contact our office. 

Mission Statement

The Virginia Western Community College Practical Nursing Program’s mission is to prepare students to provide competency based, empathetic, safe, and effective health care in a culturally diverse society and in a wide variety of health care settings.


To effectively implement the program mission, the college and program faculty have made a commitment to:

  • Utilize the Nursing Process to meet clients’ needs and promote collaborative care.
  • Perform nursing interventions (client assessment, skills performance, dosage calculation, medication administration, and client teaching) based on assessed need.
  • Explain factors that impact client care (environment, culture, family, and biopsychosocial) across the lifespan.
  • Incorporate professional communication skills (verbal, nonverbal, written, and electronic) to promote optimum outcomes.
  • Attain eligibility to sit for NCLEX-PN.

5 Year NCLEX-PN Pass Rates

  • 2019 – 87.5%
  • 2020 – 88.2%
  • 2021 – 88.9%
  • 2022 – 90.91%
  • 2023 – 100%

Explore Careers Related to This Pathway

Practical Nursing Program Philosophy

The Virginia Western Community College Practical Nursing Program recognizes the unique qualities and life experiences of our students and assists the students to achieve their potential. Assessment of individual needs of the dynamic student facilitates transition from student learners into knowledgeable, empathetic nurses, safe to practice in a variety of health care settings. Lifelong Learning is enhanced by an educational climate which promotes self-direction, self-esteem, critical thinking, and reasoning. Graduates possess the capability of rendering empathetic, safe, dependable clinical judgement in a variety of health care settings to individuals of various age, ethnic, cultural and religious backgrounds

Student Learning Outcomes

Based on Quality and Safety Competencies (QSEN) Students will be able to:

  1. Engage in practices that provide safe and holistic nursing care throughout the lifespan grounded in science and the nursing process. (Safety)
  2. Apply nursing judgment to ensure the delivery of patient-centered care and promotion of health for patients within a family and community environment. (Patient-Centered Care)
  3. Demonstrate the use of critical thinking/clinical judgement skills while utilizing the nursing process to provide care to patients throughout the lifespan. (Critical Thinking & Clinical Judgement).
  4. Collaborate effectively within nursing and interdisciplinary healthcare teams to foster open communication, respect, and shared decision making to ensure safe, quality patient care. (Teamwork)
  5. Demonstrate the use of the best current evidence to guide clinical decision making to provide safe care for patients and families across the lifespan. (Evidence-Based Practice)
  6. Integrate information and technology to communicate, manage knowledge, and support decision making in the practice of nursing care. (Informatics)
  7. Utilize concepts related to culture, ethnicity, and spirituality in the delivery of patient care. (Culture)

Program Approval

This program is approved by the Virginia Board of Nursing. Virginia Board of Nursing, Perimeter Center, 9960 Maryland Drive, Suite 300, Henrico, VA, 23233-1463.

Professional Licensure Disclosure

Current and prospective students located outside the state of Virginia or who may be considering licensure in a state other than Virginia should review the disclosure information for this program here: Virginia Western Professional License Disclosures for Students Outside of Virginia.

2024 Practical Nursing Faculty

Program Head Practical Nursing:
Melinda Wooldridge, BSN, RN, PMH-BC
Clinical Coordinator:
Melaine Moore, PhD, MSN, RN
Rachel Holman, BSN, RN
Kerry Dooley, BSN, RN

Christina Blankenship, RN
Paige Flynn, BSN, RN
Bonny Lee, BSN, RN
Jacinda Romero, BSN, RN
Josh Taylor, BA, RN
Kitty Thomas, BA, RN
Trish Thompson, RN


Est. Tuition*: $
Credits: 48 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
 540-857-7341 or 540-857-6644
Fax: 540-857-6640

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


Melinda Wooldridge, BSN, RN-BC
Program Head, Practical Nursing

Diploma – Tazewell County Vocational Practical Nursing Program, 1985
A.A.S. in Nursing – Southwest Virginia Community College, 1998
B.S.N. – American Sentinel University, 2019
Certified Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse, 2022


Martha Sullivan, Dean