Why Choose a Career as a Licensed Practical Nurse?


People who choose to train as licensed practical nurses usually want to start nursing, but also enter the workforce quickly and collect a paycheck. If you see yourself as a nurse, and you are interested in the healthcare industry, LPN training is a great way to get started.

There are a variety of different levels of care that can be provided to patients in the hospital under the supervision of registered nurses or physicians. In some places, medical assistants do some of the easy tasks. There are very short training courses to become a medical assistant, and the pay, while better than minimum wage, is not very high. If you can invest more time,  you can pursue training to become a licensed practical nurse (LPN), also known as vocational nurse. LPNs perform many nursing  tasks and typically earn more than medical assistants.

A good licensed practical nurse takes care of the patients that a lot of people don't want to see

LPNs take care of patients. They help administer medications and oxygen, keep an eye on catheters, and watch how much fluid a patient takes in and puts out. LPNs change surgical dressings, put hot or cold compresses on areas to relieve pain, and even do massage. They help patients walk; they help patients to the bathroom. They will also feed patients if they need to. They may be taking care of geriatric patients, newborn babies, or anyone in between.

A lot of LPNs work in residential care facilities, or nursing homes. Some are supervisors with medical assistants to watch over. But they also provide hands-on nursing care in the residential care facilities. An LPN will tell you that she enjoys finding the time during her shifts to interact with the residents. A good licensed practical nurse takes care of the patients that a lot of people don't want to see. If they don't have family or other visitors, the LPN may be the only person who takes the time to care about the patient in a nursing home.

Later, you can add onto your basic LPN training. You can be certified in IV (intravenous) therapy, for example. Another really great thing about choosing to start a nursing career as an LPN is that you can easily "upgrade" later and train as an RN. There are many schools all over the country with LPN-to-RN programs. There are even online LPN-to-RN programs. Sometimes your employer will pay for you to get more education. Since you are already working in a medical setting, once you get your RN you will have much less trouble finding a job. There may be one waiting for you.

It is true that some people want to go straight through nursing college and get an RN and a bachelor of science in nursing. But if you don't have the money or time to invest right now, and you want to get some training but also get started working, getting an LPN may be the best choice.

Schools offering LPN Programs

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5 Program(s) Found
Concorde , Portland
  • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1994.
  • Designated as a 2015 Top Military Friendly School by Victory Media.
  • Currently offers over 20 degree and diploma programs in Healthcare.
  • 16 campuses across the United States, with online options as well.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC) and the Accrediting Commission of the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
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Good for Working Adults
  • Flexible Scheduling
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University of Phoenix , Online (campus option available)
  • Phoenix Career Services™ help students find careers that match their interests & map out a personalized career plan.
  • Mentorships & networking opportunities available through Alumni Association of 800,000+ graduates.
  • Flexible start date and class schedules.
  • 100+ locations and online options.
  • Offers special military rates and special advisors who have a military background.
  • Students can earn credits for applicable military training and education.
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  • Online Courses
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2 Program(s) Found
  • Part of the Lincoln Group of Schools.
  • Campuses are accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS), Accrediting Commission of Career Schools (ACCSC), and Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
  • First campus was opened in 1946, now with 22 campuses across the United States.
  • Lincoln Group of Schools made over $12 million available through scholarships to qualified students in 2014.
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Good for Working Adults
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4 Program(s) Found
  • Courses emphasize laboratory skills and clinical externship experiences.
  • All training is provided by healthcare faculties who have demonstrated experience and excellence in teaching and as well as necessary credentials in their fields.
  • Class size is limited to an average of eight to twenty students per instructor.
  • Founded in New Jersey in February of 2006, the school is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES; and has been approved by the U.S. Dept. of Education and Dept. of Veterans Affairs.
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4 Program(s) Found
  • Ranked one of the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report.
  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA).
  • Offers a no-obligation, 3-week trial period where students may determine if the university is right for them before they commit to it.
  • Part of Kaplan Higher Education Campuses (KHEC), alongside 6 other institutions across the country with online options as well.
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