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Practical Nurse Certificate (LPN)

Maria graduates have a near-perfect pass rate on the NCLEX-PN exam, consistently surpassing their peers in other New York State LPN programs.

Practical Nurse Certificate (LPN)

Your first step toward a nursing career
Our Practical Nurse Certificate Program prepares you for a career as a licensed practical nurse (LPN). You’ll attend class for four semesters or about 16 months*. During that time, you’ll earn 30 nursing and 16 liberal arts and sciences credits. You’ll also develop the knowledge and skills to provide direct nursing care in a variety of settings.

*Note: these are nursing classes only. A transcript review will determine if you need other prerequisites in addition to the nursing classes.  This could result in two additional terms of study (only evening options available).

Most courses—including all those that require off-site clinical experiences—are held on weekends. The weekend program begins in the spring semester (January) and includes lecture and lab classes. Note:  depending on how the prerequisites you need for the program, you may be required to take courses in the evening.

Classes and labs are scheduled every other weekend and, on opposite weekends, to fulfill your clinical requirements– spring semester (start), then  summer, fall,  ending in the following spring semester.

One of New York’s best
Students who complete the required course work are eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). In 2018, Maria’s pass rate for first time test takers was 93.75%.  Maria graduates consistently surpass their peers in other New York LPN programs.  This strong performance has earned Maria a top 10 ranking in New York State from  Nursing programs were assessed on several factors which represents how well a program supports students toward NCLEX-PN licensure and beyond.

College credit
The Practical Nurse Certificate (PNC), a program within the Maria College Department of Nursing, is a 46-credit certificate program. Maria students also receive college credits for their LPN courses (30 in Nursing, 16 in Liberal Arts and Sciences). As a result, LPN program graduates may qualify for advanced placement in AAS programs offered at Maria or other colleges—giving you a head start toward a career as an RN.

Consumer Information

Please click here to review data on financial and program completion data.

Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) can expect a bright future as the industry job growth is above average in comparison to other occupations. To learn more, please visit the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics.



The program is accredited by the New York State Board of Regents, Office of the Professions (

  • Program Learning Outcomes

    After completion of the Practical Nurse Certificate program (LPN training) at Maria College, the graduate will be able to:

    • Demonstrate clinical competency by applying principles to meet the basic physical and psychological needs of clients through the lifespan with primary focus on activities of daily living (ADL), caring interventions, technical skills, and safety needs of clients.
    • Demonstrate knowledge of data gathering and Nursing Care Concepts of the human system, with consideration of how the environment, cultural and ethnic diversity affect client care in various environments to promote, maintain and manage health.
    • Teach basic health promotion/maintenance and self-care to an individual using a designed teaching tool to promote teaching and learning.
    • Communicate in a collaborative manner with the client, significant support persons, members of the health care team, and with community resources.
    • Incorporate critical thinking into clinical decision making when advocating care for clients, families, significant support persons or groups in a variety of environments.
    • Demonstrate professional behavior in an accountable, responsible manner within the legal scope of LPN practice, as a member of the profession of nursing.
  • Program Schedule

    The PNC courses are offered on the weekend* and consist of a sequence of four semesters (nursing classes only) or about 16 months. Begin the program with PNC 101 (includes lecture and lab classes). The college success seminar for PNC (PRD 103) must be taken concurrently with PNC 101. The remaining nursing courses (PNC 102, 103 and 104) are clinical courses and require student participation every weekend (please check the college’s academic calendar). Lecture and lab classes are during Saturday and Sunday of the “Weekend College”. Clinical experience is required off-site at a clinical facility during Saturday and Sunday of the opposite weekends.

    *Note: open lab hours, and other activities (advisement, special testing, review classes) are not exclusively on the weekend.

  • Course Sequence

    First Term




    BIO 103

    Introduction to Human Biology*


    ENG 111

    Composition I 




    Second Term

    PSY 100

    General Psychology


    SOC 101

    Introduction to Sociology




    Third Term

    PNC 101

    Fundamentals of Practical Nursing I


    PSY 200

    Developmental Psychology




    Fourth Term

    PNC 102

    Fundamentals of Practical Nursing II




    Fifth Term

    PNC 103

    Fundamentals of Practical Nursing III




    Sixth Term

    PNC 104

    Fundamentals of Practical Nursing IV




    * BIO 209 or BIO 210 may be substituted

  • Application Requirements
    • High School graduate or GED with a minimum GPA: 80 (high school graduates); 2.0 GPA (transfer students)
    • A physical examination, including tuberculosis testing, required immunizations and basic life support (BLS) are required before the student will be allowed to take clinical courses.
    • Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS VI): The TEAS VI is a multiple-choice assessment of basic academic knowledge in reading, mathematics, science and English and language usage. Applicants will be admitted on the basis of meeting the minimum requirements for entry and their TEAS test scores. Admissions decisions will be based on space availability. For more information including registering for the exam, please visit the Testing Requirement page.

    Former Maria PNC enrollees: Re-admission information

    Failure to successfully complete course work that is required by the nursing program results in dismissal from the program. A student may repeat a nursing course only once. Re-admission to the PNC Program is not automatic, and is at the discretion of the Nursing Chairperson and faculty, and may depend upon space availability. Re-admission to the nursing program beyond PNC 101 will require a written, dosage and skills examination. The student must be successful in all three examinations.

    Transition to course, NUR 240, must be within two years of graduating from the PNC Program. If out of the nursing program for more than two years, the LPN will need to take the PN-RN Transition Course. Those who wish to re-enter the program after two years must start with PNC 101.

  • Graduation Requirements
    • Earn a minimum grade of “C+” in all nursing courses required in the PNC Program.  The student must pass both theoretical and clinical components of a nursing course.
    • Each state and/or profession has procedures for certification and licensure including, among others, consideration of felony convictions, pending criminal charges and professional misconduct. As a result, completion of a program does not guarantee licensure or certification.
  • Student Achievement Data

    We’re proud that Maria Practical Nursing Certificate (PNC) graduates enjoy a near-perfect pass rate on the National Council Licensing Examination (NCLEX-PN). Their scores have been consistently higher than the average pass rate in New York State.


    NCLEX-PN Pass Rate













  • Articulation Agreements
    • Graduates of Nursing Assistant program at Capital District EOC with license to practice as Nursing Assistant to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Fulton-Montgomery Community College graduates with Certified Nurse Assistant to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Fulton-Montgomery Community College graduates with Home Health Aid Certificate to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Fulton-Montgomery Community College graduates with Home Health Aid Certificate to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Fulton-Montgomery Community College graduates with AAS in Human Services to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Fulton-Montgomery Community College graduates with AAS in Health Studies to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Fulton-Montgomery Community College graduates with General Education Certificate to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
    • Schenectady County Community College graduates with Nurse Aide certificate or Home Health Aide certificate to Practical Nurse Certificate program at Maria College
Maria Stories
Click to watch a video about Maria’s RN program

Maria’s RN program is academically rigorous and students graduate with the skills, confidence, and compassion they need to be a leader in their field.