Practical Nursing Career Opportunities in Minnesota
It takes the help of at least a few healthcare professionals to offer quality care to patients. One important member of the healthcare team is the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). LPNs can begin working in Minnesota after only one year of study (or less) and after passing the national Practical Nursing exam, the NCLEX-PN.
LPNs perform a variety of nursing tasks, including re-dressing wounds, assisting RNs with healthcare procedures and communicating with patients about symptoms. They keep records as directed by doctors and RNs and care for elderly people in nursing homes.
With the national employment rate for LPNs projected to grow 12 percent by the year 2026, now is the perfect time to begin your career in Practical Nursing.
What to Do Before You Apply for Your LPN
Licensed Practical Nurse candidates need to first graduate from high school or complete their General Education Diploma (GED). After that, an additional year of LPN training is required by the Minnesota Board of Nursing. Upon completion of an LPN program of study, graduates can take the NCLEX-PN, a national LPN exam administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN).
Your Practical Nursing Education
To obtain a Practical Nursing License by exam in the state of Minnesota, you must first complete LPN study at a Minnesota Board of Nursing approved school. Here are a few popular Minnesota nursing schools:
- Anoka Technical College.Students at this school, right near the Twin Cities, can complete a Practical Nursing Program in two semesters and be ready for the NCLEX-PN exam. Prerequisites for this school’s Practical Nursing program include experience as a Nursing Assistant or Medical Assistant, CPR certification and admission into Anoka Tech, among other requirements.
- Rochester Community and Technical College (RCTC). This school’s accelerated Practical Nursing Diploma can be completed in just 10 months. RCTC is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, and graduates of the LPN program can later bridge their credits into an Associate of Applied Science in Nursing (AAS) degree through RCTC or another Board-approved school.
Minnesota Practical Nursing Licensing
To receive your LPN license in Minnesota, you must apply by exam or endorsement. To apply by exam, you should complete training and take the NCLEX-PN exam. Those who can be verified as currently and previously licensed LPNs in another state can apply by endorsement. This means that their credentials are essentially transferred to Minnesota by an out-of-state Nursing Board.
Career Statistics for Minnesota LPNs
With 17,800 LPNs employed across Minnesota in 2016, the employment rate for Practical Nurses is expected to grow 12.2 percent by the year 2026. While this employment rate is right on track with the rest of the country, Minnesota LPNs are also paid about the same rates as the national average, with a mean income of $21.84 per hour or $45,030 annually.
Getting Started as a Practical Nurse in Minnesota
There were more than 9,000 Practical Nurses employed in the Minneapolis-St. Paul (Twin Cities) area in 2017, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That was the highest number of LPNs employed per city in Minnesota that year. The highest incomes were also found in the Twin Cities and Rochester, with mean reported incomes for LPNs in the upper $20s per hour.
With steady incomes and opportunities opening across the state of Minnesota, it’s a good time to get started in the Practical Nursing career field. Begin by completing some LPN prerequisites, such as medical assisting or CPR training, to get started on your path to becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse.