In most states, LPN stands for licensed practical nurse. In California and Texas, the designation is LVN, licensed vocational nurse. Each state has a specific type of training, a set of standards to follow, an exam, and a specific license to obtain to be an LPN.
High School Diploma
The first step in obtaining LPN jobs is a high school diploma. High school degree requirements vary across the nation, and many schools have different levels of high school diplomas. A student interested in becoming an LPN should visit the guidance counselor at his or her school for specific information on what courses to take; preparation for a nursing career often requires more math and science than is standard for most basic high school diplomas. Generally speaking though, in most cases a high school diploma or GED will suffice for entry into an LPN training program. There are only a few programs in the nation where a student in high school can train to be an LPN and receive a high school diploma as well as a vocational diploma. A student should also contact colleges and schools with LPN programs to check for specific requirements.
Adult or Second Career Students
If you are coming into licensed practical nursing later in life, then it is best to contact the training program or programs you are interested in to see if your high school diploma or GED meets the initial requirements for consideration into the program. If your high school courses are not acceptable for a training program, do not give up. Many community colleges provide courses that bridge the gap. College counselors are your best resource for developing a plan.
Admission to a Program
Once you have met the initial minimum requirements for being considered a suitable candidate for a training program for LPN jobs, there are more requirements. Many training programs have an admission packet where a basic skills assessment or nursing entrance exam is mandated as well as a criminal background check. Check with your local nursing education school to find out their exact requirements. You should also be aware that these days many nursing programs have far more qualified applicants than they can accept, so it would be a good idea to start applying as early as possible, and to apply to more than one school if feasible .
Nursing is a rewarding and a well paying career. A little research and preparation on your part will go a long way to easing your way into the profession.
Last Updated: 08/20/2013
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