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Practical Nursing

Practical Nursing

The Iowa Lakes Community College Practical Nursing (PN) program prepares graduates as entry-level practical nurses. Graduates are eligible to take the NCLEX-PN licensure exam upon completion of the program. The licensed practical nurse provides patient care under the supervision of a registered nurse or physician in hospitals, long term care facilities, physicians’ offices, and home health care agencies. 

What are the nursing program accreditations and approvals?

The nursing program is approved by the Iowa Board of Nursing, the State Board of Education, and Iowa Lakes Community College Board of Trustees.  Iowa Lakes Community College is accredited by the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the North Central Association.

How do I apply to the Nursing Program?

  1. Submit the Iowa Lakes Community College application online at indicating Nursing.
  2. Complete the Nursing Program admission checklist.
  3. Submit the Nursing Program admission checklist with supporting documents to Iowa Lakes Community College Nursing Office, 3200 College Drive, Emmetsburg, IA
    a.  High School Transcripts
    b.  College Transcript(s)
    c.  ACT and/or Accuplacer Results
  4. In compliance with 655 Iowa Administrative Code 2.10(6), students and prospective students are hereby notified that they may not take courses with a clinical or practicum component or both, if they had:
    a. been denied licensure by the board of nursing
    b. their license suspended, surrendered or revoked in any U.S. jurisdiction
    c. their license suspended, surrendered or revoked in another country due to disciplinary action

Nursing students work together in a classroom.

How do I get accepted and what course do I need to take?

  1. A high school diploma with minimum GPA of 2.0 or GED/HiSet mean score equivalent or college GPA of 2.0 from 7 credits of college level science course work attaining a grade C or higher.
  2. A student must attain a grade of C or higher in Human Anatomy and Physiology I and Lab (BIO-168), 4 credits.
  3. A student must pass a 75 Hour Certified Nursing Assistant (HSC-172) course or proof of working as a CNA.  Documentation must be submitted to the Nursing Program.
  4. Submit ACT or Accuplacer Results
    a.  Composite score of 18 or equivalent (Compass, ASSET, Accuplacer)
    b.  The composite score will be based on English, reading, mathematics, and science scores. The additional ACT “Writing Test” is not required.
    c.  Students must request ACT to send official results to the Iowa Lakes Admissions Office. Hand delivered results will not be accepted.
    d.  To register for the ACT visit  To register for Accuplacer contact the Iowa Lakes Community College Success Center.

Nursing students stands in one of the program's labs.

Once I’m accepted to the program are there other requirements?

All program requirements must be completed prior to the first day of nursing core courses.

  1. Accepted Practical or Associate Degree Nursing students are required to attend the Nursing Program orientation.
  2. At orientation, students will establish an account with to monitor the following requirements:
    a.    Criminal background check; If the student refuses to submit a criminal background check or is not approved, the student will not be able to continue in the nursing program.  Students may be required to disclose their background check results to a clinical facility.
    b.    OSHA/HIPAA training 
    c.    Physical exam and immunization records
    d.    A current American Heart Association BLS Healthcare Provider CPR course including skills.  You may take American Heart Association BLS Healthcare Provider CPR Online with Skills course at
    e.    Mandatory reporter training
  3. Students must have access to a computer.
  4. Students will be required to purchase a uniform and supplies.
  5. All prerequisite courses may be repeated once to achieve a grade “C” or higher.

What other courses would help prepare me for the nursing program?

The following courses are suggested but not required: Medical Terminology and high school science courses such as biology and chemistry. 

A nursing student enters medical information into a computer.

What kinds of classes will I take during the Nursing Program?

  1. Curriculum

What are the benefits to attending this program?

  1. Small class sizes and clinical groups
  2. Wide variety of clinical experiences
  3. Provides an opportunity for students to apply to ADN programs

Nursing is a growing field.

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