LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

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Updated December 1, 2022

Licensure for LPNs who attended an out-of-state nursing program must also have completed 1500 hours of instruction.

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Purse a Nursing Career with an LPN Degree

As the Baby Boomer generation begins to age and the need for healthcare services increases, nursing looks to remain an in-demand career choice. The Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry projects a 25 percent growth rate for the employment of LPNs from 2012 to 2022 – faster than the average for all occupations.

Across the state of Pennsylvania, community colleges, vocational schools and private career schools are answering the call, with an increased number of LPN programs available, often taking just one to two years to complete. Learn what programs and licensing entail, and begin the search for a school.

Top LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

#1 LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

Lehigh Carbon Community College

  • Schnecksville, PA
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

Lehigh Carbon Community College delivers associate and certificate programs to prepare learners for nursing careers. Many of the school's programs are available in on-campus and online formats. Studying remotely allows learners to attend class without commuting or adjusting their schedule to attend day classes.

Associate and certificate programs in nursing feature coursework covering crucial theories and practical knowledge. Many individuals apply their training to entry-level positions in nursing immediately after graduation. Graduates can also pursue a bachelor's degree, which they may use to qualify for more advanced roles with higher earning potential.

Lehigh Carbon Community College at a Glance:

Number of Associate Programs: 60

Number of Associate Programs Available Online: 11

Number of Certificate Programs: 25

Number of Certificate Programs Available Online: 8

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,360
Out-of-state
$9,540
Retention Rate
56%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
6,843
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
37% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#2 LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

Community College of Beaver County

  • Monaca, PA
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

A public institution, Community College of Beaver County offers options at the associate and certificate levels for learners interested in nursing. Students can enroll online or on campus in Monaca, Pennsylvania. Learners with full-time jobs often study online because of the increased flexibility remote learning offers.

Coursework in nursing programs covers theories and practical knowledge that participants need to succeed in the field. Individuals can pursue entry-level nursing positions after graduation. Graduates can also pursue a bachelor's degree, which they may use to qualify for more advanced roles with higher earning potential.

Community College of Beaver County at a Glance:

Number of Associate Programs: 52

Number of Certificate Programs: 25

Number of Certificate Programs Available Online: 1

Average Tuition
In-state
$9,720
Out-of-state
$14,580
Retention Rate
54%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
2,149
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
35% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#3 LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

York College of Pennsylvania

  • York, PA
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Delivering online and on-campus associate and certificate programs, York College of Pennsylvania educates learners based in the state and throughout the country. To qualify for positions, students can earn a nursing associate degree or certificate, which require coursework and technical training. Graduates often apply their credits toward a bachelor's degree, which can lead to increased earning potential.

The school's online programs allow enrollees not located near the school's campus to pursue studies without relocating or commuting. Additionally, online programs allow students to maintain employment while pursuing their degree. Prospective applicants should look into the associate and certificate programs offered and see if any meet their needs.

York College of Pennsylvania at a Glance:

Number of Associate Programs: 4

Average Tuition
In-state
$18,910
Out-of-state
$18,910
Retention Rate
81%
Admission Rate
69%
Students Enrolled
4,307
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
8% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#4 LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

Northampton Community College

  • Bethlehem, PA
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

With a main campus in Pennsylvania, public Northampton Community College delivers nursing associate and certificate programs. To prepare for entry-level roles in nursing, many students pursue an associate degree or certificate in the field. Graduates often apply their credits toward a bachelor's degree, which can lead to increased earning potential.

Enrollees located anywhere can take advantage of the school's online programs. This can also be a great option for students who wish to work in nursing but require more flexibility than a traditional in-person program provides. For specific information about the institution's programs, prospective applicants can consult an admissions counselor.

Northampton Community College at a Glance:

Number of Associate Programs: 66

Number of Associate Programs Available Online: 10

Number of Certificate Programs: 36

Number of Certificate Programs Available Online: 9

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,420
Out-of-state
$9,630
Retention Rate
59%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
9,800
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#5 LPN Programs in Pennsylvania

Community College of Philadelphia

  • Philadelphia, PA
  • 2 years
  • Online + Campus

A public institution, Community College of Philadelphia helps learners prepare for the workforce through associate and certificate programs in nursing. Although the school is located in Pennsylvania, students in any state can enroll in its online programs. The flexibility of online programs often appeals to working professionals and learners with personal responsibilities.

While earning an associate degree or certificate, participants complete field-specific coursework and gain important training. Immediately after graduation, many individuals apply to nursing positions. Graduates often pursue bachelor's studies before entering the workforce, which can lead to more job opportunities and higher salary potential.

Community College of Philadelphia at a Glance:

Number of Associate Programs: 54

Number of Associate Programs Available Online: 5

Number of Certificate Programs: 34

Number of Certificate Programs Available Online: 4

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,632
Out-of-state
$11,448
Retention Rate
60%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
15,996
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
35% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Licensure Requirements for Pennsylvania LPNs

Every state in the U.S. requires working vocational and practical nurses to hold a license, but the specific licensing process varies. The section below discusses the process applicants must follow to become licensed and maintain licensure in Pennsylvania.

Minimum Eligibility

  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Must provide proof of a high school diploma or GED issued by a state authority
  • Submit a Criminal History Record Check (CHRC) from a State Law Enforcement Authority

LPN Education and Training Requirements

Applicants for licensure must have completed in one of the state-approved LPN programs in Pennsylvania. The program must include at least 1500 hours of instruction. Licensure for LPNs who attended an out-of-state nursing program must also have completed 1500 hours of instruction. In either case, if the program includes fewer hours, the applicant must make up the missing hours with additional training.

First-time LPN license applicants must complete three hours of DHS-approved child abuse recognition and reporting training as a condition of licensure. Applicants may complete this training prior to completing a LPN program in Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania is not a Nursing Licensure Compact state, which means it does not recognize licenses issued by other states. LPNs with out-of-state licenses must become licensed by the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing in order to practice in the state.

It is possible to begin practicing nursing after graduating from one of the many LPN programs in Pennsylvania-and while waiting to take the licensing exam-by obtaining a New Graduate Temporary Practice Permit (TPP). Nurses with a TPP must practice under the physical supervision of an experienced Pennsylvania registered nurse. Applying for a TPP requires the completion of a separate application (from the application for licensure). The TPP automatically expires as soon as the applicant takes the licensing exam.

Additional LPN Licensure Requirements

  • Submit application for licensure along with non-refundable $100 fee paid by credit or debit card only
  • The nursing program attended must send applicable transcripts and a Nursing Education Form directly to the State Board.
  • Register for the National Council Licensing Examination for Practical Nursing (NCLEX-PN) exam with PearsonVUE and pay $200 fee
  • Pass the NCLEX-PN (results are mailed within 30 days) and provide written verification

Renewing an LPN License

The Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing requires LPN licenses to be renewed every two years. Licenses expire June 30 of even-numbered years. There are no requirements for continuing education or proof of practice hours. Renewing an LPN license involves the submission of an online renewal form and payment of $60 by credit or debit card.

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LPN Employment Trends in Pennsylvania

Projected growth for LPNs in Pennsylvania is 25% from 2012 to 2022, with many opportunities is settings such as nursing care facilities and hospitals, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry. Employment projections are spread almost equally among Pennsylvania's largest counties, such as Luzerne-Schuylkill, Delaware, and Chester Counties.

Counties with Highest Projected Employment
Area Total Employment (2014)
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington PA-NJ-DE-MD 14,580
Philadelphia PA Metropolitan Division 10,670
Pittsburgh 5,790
East Central Pennsylvania nonmetropolitan area 2,320
Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton PA-NJ 2,270
Scranton--Wilkes-Barre 2,110
Lancaster 2,070
Harrisburg-Carlisle 1,730
West Central Pennsylvania nonmetropolitan area 1,640
York-Hanover 1,190

LPN Resources in Pennsylvania

This LPN association provides continuing education opportunities, lobbying services, an annual convention for members across the country, including Pennsylvania. This member organization has represented the professional interests of all nurses, including Pennsylvania LPNs, for more than 100 years. Membership includes access to and savings on products and resources, including the journal Nursing Education Perspectives. Comprehensive information about the NCLEX-PN, the certification test nurses must take to become LPNs in Pennsylvania. A primary source from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for verifying LPN licenses. Frequently Asked Questions about LPN licensure from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing. Practical Nurse Law by the State of Pennsylvania This organization represents administrators in Pennsylvania Practical Nursing programs and acts as a resource body for issues affecting the education of practical nurses. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing regulates the licensure and practice of LPNs in the state. Online forms and instructions are available at this site. The Pennsylvania State Nurses Associations represents RNs and LPNs in the state. Members receive access to continuing education and networking opportunities.

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