LPN Programs in Minnesota
Unlike other positions related to a nursing career, the licensed practical nurse is not required to earn a two- or four-year degree. Instead, students receive their training through an accredited LPN program in Minnesota that typically lasts between 12 and 18 months. A combination of classroom instruction and clinical experience prepares graduates to deliver effective patient care in workplace settings that include nursing homes, physician offices, and hospitals.
Schools with LPN Programs in Minnesota
- Upon completing the LPN program curriculum offered at Rochester Community & Technical College, a graduate will have received the necessary classroom instruction in nursing theory, laboratory skills, and supervised clinical experience in order to become a licensed healthcare professional. The curriculum for the Practical Nursing program includes 39 credits (12 general education credit requirements and 27 core practical nursing credit requirements). With a start date in August, students can complete the program in 10 months on a full-time basis by the month of June. Core requirements for this program include Nursing Skills and Concepts; Introduction to Pharmacology I and II; Adult Nursing; Integrated Clinical Application; Family and Mental Health Concepts; and Care of the Older Adult.
- To earn a Practical Nursing Diploma from Central Lakes College, students must complete a curriculum that is comprised of 39 credits. Before a student can take any nursing core classes, they must fulfill pre-requisite requirements of the program, which include Human Biology, Anatomy & Physiology, Medical Terminology, and Infection Control. A sample of courses offered in the fall and spring semester for nursing core classes include Practical Nursing Skills with lab, Psychosocial Nursing, and Maternal Child Health.
- Saint Paul College (a community and technical college) offers an LPN program that consists of 40 credits worth of coursework. There is a fall and spring start for the program, which requires the completion of preliminary courses and requirements before a student can take nursing core classes. Applicants must attend a required Practical Nursing Seminar to receive a ticket to take the TEAS test, complete the TEAS test, and take the following required courses: Medical Terminology, Human Body Systems, Composition 1, and Psychology throughout the Lifespan. This program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc. (ACEN), and is actually one of three practical nursing programs in the state of Minnesota that has earned ACEN accreditation.
- Graduates of the Minneapolis Community and Technical College LPN program must take the NCLEX-PN before gaining licensure as an LPN. The 36-credit diploma program has a selective admission process that prepares students to pursue his or her aspirations of providing acute and long-term care for patients in an array of healthcare settings. The program is approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing, and is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).
- From observing kidney dialysis to experiencing school nursing, students who attend the Itasca Community College (ICC) Practical Nursing Diploma / RRCC Cohort program receive an education that combines classroom instruction with clinical experience. For example, the curriculum includes taking field trips, such as visiting local medical clinics to gain early childhood care skills. Graduates of the LPN program are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-PN examination, where the school boasts a passing rate of 94 percent in past years.
- Pine Technical College has a Practical Nursing Diploma program that equips graduates with the knowledge and skills to take the licensure exam upon completion of the curriculum. Students in the program encounter classroom instruction and coursework that includes Adult Nursing, Basic Nursing, Medication Administration, Psychosocial Nursing, and Obstetrics/Pediatrics. Valuable clinical experiences take place in a variety of healthcare settings, such as long-term care facilities, acute care centers, public health clinics, and assisted living facilities. The 53-credit program includes pre-requisite courses (such as Critical Thinking in Healthcare) and additional requirements for applicants, such as proof of taking a 75+ hour Nursing Assistant course and being current in CPR skills.
- The Practical Nursing program at St. Cloud Technical and Community College is recognized by the Minnesota Board of Nursing, and offers a part-time evening/weekend option that accommodates students unable to pursue a daytime class schedule. This program is offered on every odd numbered year, such as 2015, 2017, and 2019, where students take classes offered in the evening, on weekends, and online.
- There are two options to earn an LPN education at South Central College (SCC) through their Practical Nursing AAS Degree and Practical Nursing Diploma programs. The 40-credit Practical Nursing (PN) Diploma program at SCC is offered in the fall and spring semesters at the Faribault and North Mankato Campuses. Both campuses also offer a Practical Nursing (PN) AAS Degree program comprised of 60 credits that require the completion of more required Liberal Arts & Sciences courses than the Diploma program. The AAS degree also includes four credits of elective technical courses chosen from a list of available options, such as Stress Management, Drug Education, Introduction to Social Work, Topics in Mind/Body Fitness, and First Aid.
- As of the fall 2014 semester, Anoka Technical College now offers a 38-credit Practical Nursing program where students will encounter within two semesters worth of coursework. The diploma program is designed for full-time students with a completion time of one year. The Practical Nursing (PN) program at the College is approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing.
- There are no fully online LPN programs in Minnesota. However, there are a few schools, such as St. Cloud Technical and Community College, that offer some Practical Nursing program classes online, as seen in their part-time evening/weekend option, which combines evening, weekend and online coursework for students who cannot attend classes during the day. It is also not unheard of to see a student or graduate take an online course to reinforce their grasp of fundamental nursing skills and topics, such as medical terminology, anatomy, physiology, and pharmacology – especially when preparing to take the NCLEX exam to gain LPN licensure.
Minnesota LPN Checklist
- Set aside at least one year to complete the requirements associated with a state-approved LPN program to gain eligibility to take the licensure exam.
- After getting a diploma in practical nursing, pass the National Council Licensure Examination-Practical Nurse (NCLEX-PN) exam in Minnesota.
- Gain licensure as an LPN by submitting an application to the Minnesota Board of Nursing, and paying the initial ~$115.50 fee.
- Renew LPN license every two years.
- Fulfill continuing education requirements for the state of Minnesota, which are 12 contact hours for LPNs every renewal period.
After earning a diploma from a state-approved school program in Minnesota, graduates will find a wealth of job positions available at local hospitals, doctor offices, and extended heath care facilities. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary for licensed practical nurses gaining employment in the state of Minnesota is $40,620. For LPNs seeking to increase his or her annual income, there are opportunities to earn more money, such as taking advantage of opportunities that require assuming a more supervisory role within the workplace.