Classes for this cohort begin in July of 2018, but because the application process can be somewhat lengthy, the window for enrollment is already open.
AFTON – The practical nursing (PN) program at Northeast Tech’s Afton campus is now accepting applications for its next cohort of aspiring nurses. Classes for this cohort begin in July of 2018, but because the application process can be somewhat lengthy, the window for enrollment is already open.
“Practical nursing is one of our most popular programs throughout the district, and because our program has a reputation for success, it is very competitive to earn a spot,” said PN Coordinator Janet Trimble. “We also keep our class sizes small; students benefit from more individualized instruction, but there are fewer seats to be had.”
Trimble oversees the PN program at all four of Northeast Tech’s campuses. At the conclusion of the year-long program, students are able to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination, or NCLEX. This exam determines whether or not candidates are prepared to practice nursing.
“Last year, our students had a 93% pass rate on the NCLEX,” Trimble said. “Our pass rate is higher than both the state and national average, which is one of the main reasons I would encourage people to consider our program. We’ll give you the foundation you need to start practicing as an LPN and to further your education via an LPN to RN bridge program should you choose to do so.”
Trimble is quick to brag on the experience of the Northeast Tech practical nursing instructors – all of whom have worked in the medical field prior to joining the staff at Northeast Tech – but also attributes the program’s success to the students who enroll.
“I tell prospective students that their SUCCESS depends on that second letter: u,” said Trimble. “We can give them all the information and training they need, but it’s up to them to put in the hard work it takes to make it as a nurse.”
During the required orientation session for new applicants, Trimble and other district staff members cover information about prerequisites and financial aid, but she also takes time to address topics such as time management, organization skills and school-life balance.
“The PN program is rigorous in terms of content, and it’s very demanding of your time as a student,” Trimble said. “I want to make sure we give prospective students a clear picture of what they are signing up for before they begin.”
Brittany Jones is currently enrolled in the PN program at Afton and is a little over halfway through her studies. She chose to enroll based on the positive feedback she received from a friend who completed the program.
“I like that it’s fast – it only takes one year to complete it – and I really like the structure of the program,” Jones said. “We come to class every day from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., and we have a test every week.”
Although it’s been challenging, the Miami native says she’s glad to be enrolled.
“The workload is intense, but my teachers are really helpful, and I’m lucky to have them,” said Jones. “I’ve had to learn time management, but it’s all been worth it. I’m so glad I came here.”
Jones plans to continue her education at Northeastern Oklahoma A& M College (NEO) where she hopes to be accepted into the fast track registered nurse program and ultimately begin a career in obstetrics.
“If anyone is interested in the program here at Northeast Tech, I’d tell them to come in, look at the campus, and talk to the instructors,” said Jones. “You’ll love it.”
Admission into Northeast Tech’s practical nursing program has several requirements that include earning a passing score on either the TABE or ACT test, completing two prerequisite courses – medical terminology and certified nurse aide – and attending an orientation session. Both prerequisite courses and the TABE test are offered through Northeast Tech’s Adult Education program. The application deadline for this cohort is May 4.
“As applications are collected, they all go into the same pool where they are numerically ranked,” Trimble said. “Points are given for completion of CareerTech or college coursework, test scores, work experience, current medical certifications, etc. The more points an applicant has, the higher their ranking and the greater their chances are of being accepted into the program.”
Beginning with the July 2018 cohort, prospective students must have a minimum of 18 points to be considered for admission. Any prospective students who have already turned in their application will be contacted and encouraged to update their applications if they fall short of the 18-point minimum.
Northeast Tech’s practical nursing program is open to adults 18 years of age and older. The enrollment requirements and application can be found online at www.netech.edu, and financial aid is available to qualified candidates. The next PN Orientation session will be held at the Administration Office in Pryor on Feb. 2, from 10:30-11:30 a.m.