Practical nursing class graduates from PTC

Program Director Latrese Taylor (far left), Arlene Gorlewski (far right) & 6 of the 10 students who graduated from the program June 9.

BY RAVEN JOY SHONEL, Staff Writer

ST. PETERSBURG –  The St. Petersburg campus of Pinellas Technical College (PTC) graduated 10 students from their Practical Nursing program June 9. Each graduate is now equipped with the knowledge to sit for the Florida State Board of Nursing Exam to become licensed practical nurses (LPN).

The 10 graduating students completed the hybrid format of the Practical Nursing course. The majority of the 675-hour academic theory section of the program was completed online with a few scheduled campus-based activities as opposed to having everyday face-to-face classroom instruction as the traditional students have.

The remaining 675 clinical hours were scheduled mainly on weekends and evenings at various locations in the immediate and surrounding counties. The clinical and lab hours are spread throughout the 15-month program with the majority occurring in the second half of the program.

Clinical hours are performed at approved facilities, such as Menorah Manor, Morton Plant Mease and Mease Countryside hospitals. Students work on different floors such as the orthopedic, telemetry and medical surgery floors in preparation of becoming a LPN.

“They had quite a variety of situation that they could be in if there were a LPN,” said Nursing Instructor Arlene Gorlewski. “The nurses there were very eager to teach and they applauded how our students behaved.”

Although the first portion of the course is online, students are never left hanging. Gorlewski said she’s just a phone call, email or text away if a student has questions.  She will even meet with them on campus if need be.

“You have to meet their needs,” said Gorlewski, who has been a registered nurse for more than 40 years.

Many students, once they complete the nursing course at PTC, matriculate into St. Petersburg College or other private nursing schools to become a registered nurse.

“Nursing is a great career. They can do so many things; you just have to get the basics,” she finished.

If working in the medical field is a career path you’d like to explore, please call (727) 893-2500 for the St. Pete campus or (727) 538-7167 for the Clearwater campus. You can also logon to www.pcsb.org/myptc for more information.

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