Academics :: School of Health Professions

Practical Nursing (LPN)


What do I need to do to apply?

Complete the following and submit appropriate material directly to: Pam Woody, VWCC - Health Professions, 3091 Colonial Ave., Roanoke, VA 24015 by April 1, 2015.

  1. Apply to the college by completing a Virginia Western college application, if not currently attending. You are encouraged to complete the application on-line at Please make sure you indicate your program/plan of study as Practical Nursing/Pre-Admission on the application.
  2. Apply to the Practical Nursing Program by completing a 2015 Practical Nursing Application form. You must submit this by mail or in person (handwritten essay should be included).
  3. Have all official sealed transcripts (high school and college) and a copy of GED scores (if applicable). When possible applicants should request official transcripts from high school and all colleges attended/attempted to be mailed to your home address. Upon receipt of transcripts, do not open the sealed official envelope(s). Place all unopened transcripts with your program application/essay into one larger envelope and mail to Miss Woody or hand-deliver to her office in The Fralin Center (CSHP) – Room 339. GED holders must submit a copy of their GED scores and also submit official high school transcripts if they completed at least through the 9th grade of high school. Transcripts must be submitted from all colleges attended (except VWCC or any other Virginia Community College). If any school refuses to issue an official transcript directly to student, please have it sent directly to Health Professions/Pam Woody. You should receive the practical nursing advising form letter after your complete academic file is reviewed (usually 3-4 weeks after submission).

What are the minimum academic requirements to be considered for the program?

A high school diploma or GED. Applicants must have a cumulative high school or college-level GPA of 2.0 or higher. High school graduates and GED holders who earned less than a 2.0 GPA during high school will be considered for admission if they have generated a college GPA of 2.0 or above. The GPA is calculated at the most recent institution/college you attended and completed at least 12 college credit hours completed. The GPA is determined at the end of the fall semester (2014).

The following high school courses with a grade of "C" or higher: Algebra I and Biology. Appropriate developmental or college course equivalents can be substituted. Must be completed by the end of Summer 2015 to be eligible for the 2015 program. Priority will be given to those who complete by the end of Spring.

Are there additional requirements?

Yes. You must submit a handwritten essay with your program application. Instructions are provided on the back of the program application form. This must be submitted prior to the April 1, 2015 deadline. Applicants being considered will be required to take an entrance examination (Kaplan) in the spring of 2015. Applicants are responsible for the exam fee. All eligible applicants must attend a personal interview with the program faculty in April.

When should I apply?

Applications for the 2015 class are being accepted now and must be completed no later than April 1, 2015. The 2014 class is already filled. If you apply now, this will allow us to help you plan and suggest proper courses to begin your studies. Current enrollment in missing prerequisites is not required to apply early, but must be successfully completed before entering the program. You may benefit from advising by the Pre-Practical Nursing advisor, 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).

Is admission to the program very competitive? Are there admission priorities?

Approximately thirty-five (35) students will be admitted to the 2015 Practical Nursing class. Priority consideration will be given to applicants who have either completed all high school prerequisites or anticipate completion of the missing prerequisites by the end of Spring 2015. Meeting the curriculum admission standards does not guarantee program admission.

Who makes the admission decisions? When are the results given to the applicants?

Admission decisions are made by the Practical Nursing Admissions Committee, which meets in May. Admission decisions are mailed to the applicants as soon as possible, usually in mid-May. This program is four semesters in length (Fall/Spring and Fall/Spring).

Will I need to take any courses to be eligible for the program?

Some applicants may need developmental courses for math or English (prior to prerequisites or support courses), which can be determined by reviewing your placement testing results with a counselor. A review of your transcripts after application will assist in determining if you lack the required prerequisites (Algebra I and Biology). If you need to establish a 2.0 GPA, please speak to the advisor to determine appropriate coursework prior to the fall semester. Applicants interested in taking additional curricular support courses prior to knowing if they are accepted are encouraged to work with the advisor to see if taking support classes is practical based on their individual circumstances (taking in consideration whether they are part-time, full-time, financial circumstances, holding a job, etc.). Some students elect to take some of the general education courses such as English 111, PSY 230 and SDV 100 before beginning the program, but they are not treated as prerequisites.

Should I be concerned if I have a felony or misdemeanor on my record?

The Board of Nursing can deny licensure to any applicant who has filed false credentials, who has falsely represented facts on the application for licensure, and/or has committed a felony or misdemeanor. Some health care facilities may not employ individuals who have committed certain criminal acts and may conduct criminal background checks before hiring. Criminal background checks and urine drug screens are required for entrance into some clinical agencies. Students who have convictions may be prohibited from clinical agencies and may not complete the certificate program. If you wish to discuss this issue, you may call the LPN Program Head at (540) 857-6176.

How do I obtain licensure as a licensed practical nurse?

You must successfully complete an approved Practical Nursing education program and pass a licensure exam, which is administered by the National Council of the State Board of Nursing. You must apply to the regulatory board of the state in which you plan to practice. The general requirements include personal, character, and criminal background information. Application for the licensure examination will be provided toward the end of the fourth semester in the Practical Nursing program.

Does VWCC have a transition program for LPN's who want to become RNs? What would be required?

VWCC will not offer a program for LPN’s to transition to the (RN) nursing program for 2014. However, plans are being made to have a transition program by summer 2015. Students must have a current LPN license and meet all prerequisite requirements to be considered for the transition curriculum. If you need more information, please call the advisor at 857-7307.

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 2015 application form with the appropriate transcripts. This will allow us to help you plan and suggest proper courses to begin your studies.

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