Graduated from a vocational school?

  1. Have any of you graduated from a vocational school? What do you think about them?

    Our state has just recently added LPN programs through Pionner Pacific, Apollo, and Concorde. I'm wondering how effective these guys are at teaching and getting their students hired?

    These school look at work/school history, references and the CPAT score. No pre-reqs required.

    We don't have any LPN programs at the Community College level that don't require acceptance into a Nursing Program (You can take the NCLEX-PN after completing year 1). The wait lists are long and very competitve.
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    About momma2twnz

    Joined: May '07; Posts: 13


  3. by   feisty_lpn
    I earned my diploma through a 12 month program at a vocational school. They have a 98% first-time pass rate for NCLEX the last 10 or so years. I had 3 jobs waiting for me before I even graduated. Employers would come to our school every Friday with lunch and freebies to recruit us during the last 2 months of the program. The program is THE BEST in the state and we all had jobs waiting on us before graduation.

    Every school is different regardless of whether its based in vocational or community college. Some are horrible and only there for the money. Others are there to send confident nurses into the workforce with proficient skills.

    If you want a quality education, do some leg work and research. Interview the program's administrator or instructors. Ask for NCLEX pass rates, program drop-out rates, average GPA at graduation, etc. Find their most frequent clinical site and interview its administrator... get an outsider's view of the nursing training that they've observed.

    HTH! GL!
  4. by   pagandeva2000
    I probably would have attended a vocational school if I had been able to. They seem to get better clinical experience, for one. I have the assumption is that they probably cut through the chase and get to the point rather than deal with a bunch of theory.

    It may be at a disadvantage if you wished to go straight into an RN program, because they don't transfer credits and would have to take college level courses for pre-requisites (this is what I hear some of the vocational school graduates complain about the most). Good luck!
  5. by   Nur_1996
    I went to a very good, intense 1 year vocational school in FL.
  6. by   shizaina
    Are you in Oregon? I am currently a student at Apollo College and I am finding it to be a very good program. Lots of wonderful instructors and the clinicals are at reputable sites. I recommend this program, plus Apollo has been around the longest out of all the vocational schools. They have a good reputation for their pass rates. It's spendy however. Lpn jobs are becoming more plentiful here. You'll have no problem getting a job after graduation. There are bridge programs through PCC that you can get into as long as you have their prereqs. all out of the way (the classes from Apollo don't transfer), and 1000 hours of clinical experience. They let you test to see where you fit into the second year of their program. I have done my research on all this stuff, so if you have any more questions feel free to ask. :spin: :spin: :spin:
  7. by   DanisTeeta
    I am currently in my LAST SEMESTER (yeee-haw) in a Tech School. This was my only option here. The program is accelerated. 52 weeks straight with only 1 two week break. I feel I have recevied a great education!!
    Go For It!!!
  8. by   momma2twnz
    Shiz, I am in Vancouver. Thank you for the info! I talked w/ Pioneer Pacific and have a meeting next week to take the Cpat and interview. It's around 20K for their program and they say their pass rate was very close to 100% (3 people took the test over 6 months after graduation which apparently tweeks the reported results).

    I have talked to Apollo. What is the entry like? Is it competetive? What do they require? How long does it take to get in? What is the schedule like? Sorry so many questions.

    It's ridiculous to try to get into any program here. The CC's are a joke. 800 applying and 100 entering on a lottery system. Or requiring practicall a 4.0 in all pre-reqs and a 70% chance of getting in. Frustrating.

    Thank you all who responded. I posted on the RN site and only 1 person could take time to post! HMMMM!
    Last edit by momma2twnz on May 31, '07 : Reason: typo
  9. by   DanisTeeta
    R U talking $20,000 USA $$$ for the LPN program???

    I am not sure what Apollo is...more info.
  10. by   DeeDee143
    I just graduated from my program which was 18 months.It was very rigorous and intense. I went through a community college. I learned alot and my school has a passing rate of 86%
  11. by   TheCommuter
    I completed an LVN program at a private vocational school nearly 2 years ago. In my honest opinion, these schools are bureaucracies, and tend to be operated very similarly to small businesses. The main focus of private schools is to get their students to pass the NCLEX. Otherwise, you will need to learn many of your skills on the job when you get hired. During my time in my LVN program, I never inserted a catheter, never inserted an NG tube, never did a head-to-toe assessment, etc. I had to learn my assessment skills on the job.
  12. by   kat7ap
    I graduated from a vocational school and agree that administration functions very much like a business and less like a school. Their ultimate goal is to get people graduated and licensed, if not they lose money. I found that they were not very selective in choosing students and felt that more than a few were less than quality for a nursing program and probably shouldn't have passed if it weren't for spoon feeding from the instructors. Another negative was the high cost: $18,000.

    Positives were excellent instructors, great clinical experiences, a school with a good reputation, the N-CLEX was a breeze, and I was done in 12 months with no prereq's.
  13. by   lavatea
    I'm attending a branch of Concorde right now. Not sure if I would pay the $20,000 given another chance, but my biggest reason was to go here was that they had classes starting every 3 months. I would have had to wait until a fall entry if I went through the (cheaper) community college. The school is run very much like a business and they treat the students like elementary school kids. Not sure if it is this way in every nursing program or not, but coming from a college setting, I just don't see it...
  14. by   momma2twnz
    Thank you for you insight!

    I definately think that a vocational school is the way to go for me. Our Community Colleges do not have free-standing LPN programs. You have to complete all the pre-reqs (45 credits) and apply to the Nursing Program. We don't have any waitlists, so each year you have to reapply with no advantage.

    I know a lot of people who finished bachelor degrees with out really learning anything, so I think, just like anything it is up to the person to determine how much they are going to get out of a program. You can learn the system or you can learn the job.