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  1. #1
    Jonathan Whatley is offline Registered User
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    TriSmith College: Early Distance Hybrid LPN Program

    Someone should mention for posterity that TriSmith College, which was on Yadkin Road in Fayetteville, North Carolina, advertised a hybrid distance-learning program to qualify staudents for the NC Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) exam in or around the 1990s.

    TriSmith required about 80 hours of clinical experience on site. Steve Levicoff classed them "as a degree mill based on misleading advertising ;" they advertised nationally that they qualified students for the NCLEX-PN exam. In NC, apparently yes, but there were exclusions or limitations in other states.

    TriSmith College is now long gone and there seems to be very little trace of it online. The State Archives of North Carolina administers its student records. All of two people Like it on Facebook.

    Apparently it was also known for a time as TriSmith School of Allied Health & Professions.

    Two posts from Dr. Levicoff on alt.education .distance mentioning TriSmith: 1, 2.
    Last edited by Jonathan Whatley; 04-08-2013 at 11:28 AM.

  2. #2
    sanantone is offline Registered User
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    I was trying to look for online LPN/LVN programs. The only possibility I came up with was Lonestar College, but it's hard to tell if the program is mostly online or not. Their pages have conflicting information.
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  3. #3
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanantone View Post
    I was trying to look for online LPN/LVN programs. The only possibility I came up with was Lonestar College, but it's hard to tell if the program is mostly online or not. Their pages have conflicting information.
    If your goal is to get accepted to the RN program with Excelsior College, one needs to be a LPN/LVN or Paramedic or Respiratory Therapist. Someone mentioned earlier an online Paramedic program in Texas. In addition, there is an online Respiratory Therapy program although very costly!
    Respiratory Therapy Program | Associate | Independence University

    Personally, I think it is easier to enroll in a local traditional or hybrid LPN certificate program if available in your community.
    Last edited by Delta; 04-09-2013 at 08:21 AM.

  4. #4
    Jonathan Whatley is offline Registered User
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    *nods.* I've heard – albeit from webboards, and we know how reliable those are – that it may be difficult for students to arrange the supervised clinical experience required to complete the Independence University (formerly California College of Health Sciences) respiratory therapy program.

  5. #5
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan Whatley View Post
    *nods.* I've heard – albeit from webboards, and we know how reliable those are – that it may be difficult for students to arrange the supervised clinical experience required to complete the Independence University (formerly California College of Health Sciences) respiratory therapy program.
    No matter what program you are in, clinical rotations are about making connections with the right people who have a desire to precept you! Even at a University Hospital you can get a lousy experience if the clinicians don't want to be bothered with students. The patient has to be informed they have a student working with the clinician and depending on them, the student may be able to 1. Observe 2. Participate or 3. Not be able to participate. I found community clinics are the best place to get clinical rotations. The student gets a lot of "hands on" experience.
    Last edited by Delta; 04-09-2013 at 08:42 AM.

  6. #6
    sanantone is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanantone View Post
    I was trying to look for online LPN/LVN programs. The only possibility I came up with was Lonestar College, but it's hard to tell if the program is mostly online or not. Their pages have conflicting information.
    I was the one who mentioned the online paramedic programs in Texas. I'm not really looking to become an RN through Excelsior; I was just curious to see if there were any online LVN/LPN programs. I actually think the online paramedic programs in Texas would be the easiest route if you live in Texas, but none of them qualify for federal financial aid. There is even a program offered by a community college that only qualifies for military tuition assistance. So, it would be about $5,000-$6,000 out of pocket. Percom/Kilgore College's program has places to do clinical rotations and skills sessions in the major cities around Texas. The program is also self-paced. You do all of the didactic courses online first and then you do the hands-on stuff in a condensed format.

    WGU has no clinical sites for all of Central Texas making it difficult for millions of people in the metro areas of Austin and San Antonio to complete the program. I just don't understand their reasoning for this. San Antonio is about 3 hours from Houston and 4-5 hours away from Dallas. I know El Paso is far out to the west, but the city only has about 500,000 people.
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  7. #7
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    In regards to price, I don't think you can beat a local community college or applied technology center LPN program! They usually are about 1 year in length and there are numerous schools across the USA. The problem with a LPN is that you are limited in job opportunities. Many hospitals not only require an RN but a BSN as well to maintain there "magnet" status and so forth! If you want to work in home care, nursing homes, Physician offices or local, state and federal government run clinics/facilities, the LPN will probably suffice! Nursing has become a popular career and jobs are competitive as well! In some ways, the LPN may have an advantage in doctors offices because they don't demand the higher salaries like the RN positions but have greater scope than the Medical assistant . For example, I worked at an Urgent Care Clinic for 2 years as an RN for $18 an hour. The clinic was sold and they kept the LPN's and MA's because they got $12 an hour! I don't know what the wages are today?
    Last edited by Delta; 04-09-2013 at 09:13 AM.

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  9. #8
    sanantone is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Delta View Post
    In regards to price, I don't think you can beat a local community college or applied technology center LPN program! They usually are about 1 year in length and there are numerous schools across the USA. The problem with a LPN is that you are limited in job opportunities. Many hospitals not only require an RN but a BSN as well to maintain there "magnet" status and so forth! If you want to work in home care, nursing homes, Physician offices or local, state and federal government run clinics/facilities, the LPN will probably suffice! Nursing has become a popular career and jobs are competitive as well! In some ways, the LPN may have an advantage in doctors offices because they don't demand the higher salaries like the RN positions but have greater scope than the Medical assistant. For example, I worked at an Urgent Care Clinic for 2 years as an RN for $18 an hour. The clinic was sold and they kept the LPN's and MA's because they got $12 an hour! I don't know what the wages are today?
    But isn't it usually recommended that you not work full-time while attending any kind of nursing program? That is the main reason why I would not enroll in an LVN or RN program at one of the local community colleges. I have bills to pay! LOL.
    Texas State University - PhD CJ (ABD)
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  10. #9
    skidadl is offline Registered User
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    I'd be interested to hear the opinions of those here concerning going for the LVN versus RN. For someone who has low testing scores that are required for admission exams it seems like it would be better to go for the LVN first. Getting into an LVN to RN/BSN program would be a smoother transition from what I can tell.
    BS, Business Administration, CCU, May, 2008
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  11. #10
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanantone View Post
    But isn't it usually recommended that you not work full-time while attending any kind of nursing program? That is the main reason why I would not enroll in an LVN or RN program at one of the local community colleges. I have bills to pay! LOL.
    From my experience, it was not possible to work full-time while attending a health professional oriented program.....even "non traditional"! Why? It requires numerous hours of clinical experience and study! I had to reduce my work hours to 2/3 time to support a family and 3 kids! It took me 3 years to get a Master of Science as a Family NP. With all due respect, we are not talking about Clep and Dantes exams here!

    Prospective students, especially working adults need to be aware of the sacrifices involved at many levels of your life. If you are willing to time manage, reduce your lifestyle, take out loans, miss your family,etc. it is doable for a working adult but not without inconveniences. For me it was worth it!

  12. #11
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    If you get accepted to a traditional LPN program, I say go for it! Trying to go through all these backdoors like online Paramedic then Excelsior College is a gamble at best to becoming a RN! My suggestion is to take the CNA course and practical and written exam first to see if you even enjoy Healthcare in the first place. Relatively low investment! Also, consider volunteering at a free clinic. Often health professional oriented schools value volunteer health experience during the admission process.

  13. #12
    sanantone is offline Registered User
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    There are other paramedic to RN programs other than Excelsior. Living off of student loans while becoming an LVN defeats the purpose of going to a cheap community college. I have no plans to take either path. I already have a masters and it would be cheaper for me to get a PhD in a non-healthcare field.
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  14. #13
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanantone View Post
    There are other paramedic to RN programs other than Excelsior. Living off of student loans while becoming an LVN defeats the purpose of going to a cheap community college. I have no plans to take either path. I already have a masters and it would be cheaper for me to get a PhD in a non-healthcare field.
    Well, there you go! It defeats your purpose! The topics on this forum don't necessarily have to apply to you but to others that may be contemplating this pathway! I hold a Masters in business and decided I wanted to learn healthcare and started down a different road I very much enjoy 12 years ago! No regrets!
    Last edited by Delta; 04-09-2013 at 11:03 AM.

  15. #14
    sanantone is offline Registered User
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    That's cool. I have a passion for the health and biological sciences, but I also have a passion for the social sciences . Maybe I'll apply for psychology programs next year which would be a mixture of the two areas. I would only enroll if the program is fully-funded. In the meantime, I've found some other programs that pay a $26k annual stipend! If I can't get into those, I'll focus on a cheap option like Valdosta State University's online DPA program. I could create a social work concentration if I wanted to for the DPA, but it would be faster and cheaper for me to just use my masters credits for the concentration.
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  17. #15
    Delta is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by sanantone View Post
    That's cool. I have a passion for the health and biological sciences, but I also have a passion for the social sciences. Maybe I'll apply for psychology programs next year which would be a mixture of the two areas. I would only enroll if the program is fully-funded. In the meantime, I've found some other programs that pay a $26k annual stipend! If I can't get into those, I'll focus on a cheap option like Valdosta State University's online DPA program. I could create a social work concentration if I wanted to for the DPA, but it would be faster and cheaper for me to just use my masters credits for the concentration.
    The healthcare profession needs people that are passionate in many areas! I think that is what attracted me to Nursing . I've seen nurses become Chief Executive Officers, Politicians, Deans, Researchers, Military Officers, and so forth. There are thousands of areas one can branch out in!

  18. #16
    warguns is offline Registered User
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    ROP for LVN

    Quote Originally Posted by Delta View Post
    In regards to price, I don't think you can beat a local community college or applied technology center LPN program! T
    In California, every school district has an ROP (Regional Occupational Program) that provides onsite vocational training. Originally for high school students, anyone can enroll. They are the cheapest places in California for LVN and EMT training.

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