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Practical Nursing
Why Choose Practical Nursing at CLC?

Consistent use of simulation to enhance classroom and clinical experiences

Variety of clinical experiences including but not limited to Acute Care, Long-Term Care, clinics, mental and behavioral health

Flexible schedules 3-4 days per week

Program accredited through Higher Learning Commission, approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing

NCLEX passing rates above the state and national average.

Multiple opportunities for employment and/or further education

Nursing instructors who truly care about student's and their success in the program.

Program Options
Nursing Assistant Certificate
About the Program

Central Lakes Practical Nursing Program is comprehensive nursing program that can be completed in two semesters, after completing pre-requisites. Whether you career goal is to work as a Licensed Practical Nurse or you envison yourself as a two or even a four year RN, Central Lakes College is a great place to start!

The program, which has been in existence for 56 years, has had a long history of success, with its first graduating class of 14 to current graduating classes of 80 students. Minnesota State Board of Nursing pass-rates are above the state and national averages, and the employment rate is nearly 100% with students either finding employment as an LPN or continuing their education.

Peggy Rider
Peggy Rider MSN, RN was hired as a full time Practical Nursing instructor at Central Lakes College in 2007 after working many years as a part time clinical instructor.  She has 29 years experience working in industry as a staff RN and charge nurse in an acute care hospital, primarily in medical-surgical areas. She graduated with her BSN from Mankato State University in 1978 and just recently completed a MSN from St. Xavier University in Chicago. When not spending time with her students, she enjoys spending time with her husband and son as well as reading, and gardening. 
Email Peggy for more information
Gayle Ollila
Gayle is the Nursing Lab Coordinator for the Central Lakes College Nursing Department. Prior to entering the nursing field, she owned and operated her own business for 27 years. She graduated with honors in May 2005 from the PN program at CLC, then worked for six-and-a-half years as an LPN before assuming the position of Nursing Lab Coordinator at CLC. Gayle’s responsibilities include setting up patient simulations for nursing classes, maintaining simulation hardware and software, managing nursing student files, ordering class supplies, and controlling inventory.
Email Gayle for more information
Julie Woitalla
Julie Woitalla MSN, RN, Graduated from the College St. Scholastica in 1991, and received a Masters in Nursing Education from Metropolitan State University. Her Nursing career has included working as a RN at Mayo Methodist Hospital in Rochester, St. Joseph’s Medical Center, Crow Wing County Public Health, Horizon Health Home Care and the Pierz School District. She has been with Central Lakes College since 2009. She currently resides in Pierz with her husband where she also assists with the family farm. She has four adult children. She also enjoys gardening, reading and hanging out at the lake with friends.
Email Julie for more information
Shirley Lofquist
Shirley Lofquist MSN, RN,  graduated from the University of Minnesota with a BSN and a MSN from Saint Xavier University and has over forty years of experience in providing acute patient care in ER, OB, ICU/CCU, Medical-Surgical Nursing and Oncology. She has held management positions of Assistant Director of Nursing, Staff Development, Quality Improvement Coordinator, and Charge Nurse which along with her many years of direct patient care and membership in the American Nurses Association have combined to produce a wide knowledge base and source of life experiences with which she draws upon to enhance her students’ learning environments in the classroom, in clinical practice, and on-line instruction. Over the years she has taught just about every subject offered in the practical nursing program but medical-surgical nursing remains her favorite course to teach.
Email Shirley for more information
Student Testimonials
Tonya Kohanek
After years of going to another school, I returned to CLC because of the positive experience I had here the
first time I attended college. All the staff at CLC is very helpful and always pushing you to make your goal.
Joni Singleton
I am attending Central Lakes College and currently in the LPN program and transitioning into the RN program next fall. I heard it had a great reputation and was close to home and convenient to attend. My instructors have been incredible, I have learned many great skills, and they all really want us to succeed.
Jessica Dybevik
Nursing is a passion, not just a career choice. I chose the PN program at CLC because it is a great program with many benefits. We get hands on training, interactions with real people, and exploration of different areas in the nursing field. Becoming a nurse has been the best decision I’ve ever made; I highly recommend it to others.
Tina Keehr
I chose the Practical Nursing Program at CLC because of location, but what I found was so much more. They provide a superior education in the heart of Minnesota. The nursing program at CLC is top of the line. I feel upon completion I will be prepared for my future as an LPN.
Bureau of Labor Statistics

For more information regarding employment statistics, career salary information and estimated job growth, follow the resource links below:

Gainful Employment - Diploma