Nursing - DTA-MRP - Associate Degree - Part Time

The Associate Degree Registered Nursing Program at Bellingham Technical College located in Bellingham, WA is accredited by the: Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)

3390 Peachtree Rd. NE, Suite 1400 Atlanta, GA 30326

The most recent accreditation decision made by the ACEN Board of Commissioners for the Associate Degree Registered Nursing Program is Continuing Accreditation.

If you’re interested in building a rewarding career in the high-demand field of nursing, then Bellingham Technical College’s Nursing Program is for you!

Registered Nursing Program Overview

The Bellingham Technical College Nursing Program is the largest nursing program in the region and has been educating nurses since 1954. The registered nursing program is nationally accredited through the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and is a concept-based Associate Degree in Nursing Direct Transfer Agreement/Major Ready Pathway (DTA/MRP). Academic preparation includes core courses in arts and sciences and those focusing on basic nursing skills and knowledge.


Register here for an online Summer RNDT Nursing Info Session on July 30, 2024 at 3-4 pm.

There is one Nursing Program at BTC which has three program options, Registered Nursing (RN), LPN-RN, and Practical Nursing (PN). The Registered Nurse associate degree is intended for students new to the nursing field and has both a full-time and part-time options. Advanced placement students who are Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) are admitted into the part-time, evening LPN-RN option to complete the DTA/MRP associate degree. Students who graduate from the either RN pathway or the LPN-RN pathway are eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination – Registered Nurse (NCLEX-RN). The third program option is the Practical Nursing Certificate. This pathway is designed for students interested in becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and looking for a part-time option that better meets their needs. Upon competition of the PN Certificate program graduates are eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination – Practical Nurse (NCLEX-PN).

Nursing Student Handbook 2023-2024

Note: BTC has not made a determination that the Nursing Program curriculum meets educational requirements for licensure/certification outside of Washington State. We encourage students who plan to work out-of-state to check relevant local licensure/certification requirements.

The BTC Nursing Program is approved by the Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission (NCQAC).

PO Box 47864
Olympia, WA 98504

Employment Information

Data are provided on a program (not credential) level

92%1 BTC graduate placement rate (Employment Security Department- WA and OR only)
100%3 BTC graduate placement rate (faculty-tracked, national)
100%3 BTC in-field graduate placement rate (faculty-tracked, national)

$76,012 starting annual wage2
$93,326 average annual wage2
$100,118 potential annual wage2

  • Employment and Wage Data Sources and Information

    1Employment data come from the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) and reflect WA/OR employment for students enrolled at BTC between 2017-18 and 2019-20. Students are included in the employment rate if they left with a credential. Rates are not shown for programs with fewer than 10 students meeting the above criteria.

    2Whatcom County and WA State wage data come from Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD) 2021 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates and reflect 2018-21 employment. Wage data represent occupations that BTC faculty have identified as the most relevant career paths for program graduates. Note that these wages reflect employees with varying educational levels/credentials. For cases in which multiple occupations have been identified by faculty, a weighted percentile is calculated using each occupation’s percentile wage and employment size estimate. Wages are not shown for programs for which occupations do not meet the ESD’s minimum thresholds for publishing. If the program has wage data from the Washington SBCTC that involves shift work, these ESD wages reflect the same number of hours used in the annual wage calculation. Starting wage = 25th percentile, median wage = 50th percentile, wage potential = 75th percentile.

    3Additional employment rates are provided for programs with faculty who maintain their own employment records of students who graduated between 2017-18 and 2019-20 and who were employed within 9 months of graduation. Both overall and in field of study employment rates are included, respectively. For these programs, the format follows: ESD rate / faculty-tracked overall rate / faculty-tracked in-field rate. These additional, faculty-provided rates are particularly important for programs that tend to have graduates employed outside of WA and OR. Note that due to lack of available data, rates may represent fewer than 3 years of graduates.

  • Estimated Program Costs

Tuition Fees and Rates overview page

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

If you have questions about applying to any of the Nursing programs, please contact your College Navigator at to schedule an appointment.

How to Apply 


Watch the Application and Admission overview video


Students are welcome to apply to more than one option!

For part-time Registered Nursing, apply HERE.

For full-time Registered Nursing, apply HERE.

First application deadline: April 9th

Students who submit a complete application by the first deadline will receive communications regarding an admission decision in late May. If an applicant has not received any communications about an admission decision by May 24th, they can email to request a status update.

 Second application deadline: July 9th

Students who submit a complete application by the second deadline will receive communications regarding an admission decision in late July or early August. If an applicant has not received any communications about an admission decision by August 15th, they can email to request a status update.

Students interested in another part-time option, can apply to our Practical Nursing Program. Get licensed in 18 months!  Practical Nursing Website

All applicants to the BTC Nursing Program must be Program-Ready before they can apply online during the Application Window. Students are Program-Ready once they have completed the following:

  • Current BTC application on file with Associate in Nursing as the program of intent.
  • Complete all prerequisite foundational courses with required minimum grades and number of credits. Transcript evaluation process for all courses taken at another institution must be complete.
    • If you plan to transfer credits from another institution, they must be submitted and evaluated at least 4-6 weeks before the application deadline.
    • Effective April 12, 2023, the Nursing program will no longer require the ATI TEAS assessment as an admissions requirement.

  • Approved Nursing Healthcare Experience Verification form. Applicants must submit completed Nursing Healthcare Experience Verification Form and accompanying documentation for program review and approval. 

Pre-Application Audit

  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to request an audit from a Navigator before applying to their intended program. The Navigator will review the applicant’s record to ensure completion of prerequisite requirements. To request an audit, email Include your first and last name, intended program, and last 4 digits of your ctcLink student ID.
  • Audit requests will be fulfilled on a first come first serve basis. Applicants are encouraged to request their audit as early as possible to ensure a timely response. Wait times will be longer as application deadlines approach, and we recommend that applicants request an audit at least 3 weeks before they plan to apply.

Students interested in the Nursing program should apply to the college and contact Admissions at 360.752.8345 or at for assistance with getting started at BTC. A college application and your score on complete guided self-placement and/or previous transcripts will determine where you begin your course sequence.

This pathway is designed for students new to the nursing field who wish to complete their associate degree part-time. The core program admissions process information can be found on the checklist and FAQ.

Part-time Nursing DTA Admissions Checklist

Part-time Nursing DTA Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The BTC Nursing Program is educating our students in-person again. Please be aware that this is not an online program.

Students will be required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19. To be considered fully vaccinated, two weeks must have passed since the date of the second dose or first dose for the one-dose vaccine. The program’s clinical partner agencies will not accept any exemption to full COVID-19 vaccination.

The Bellingham Technical College Nursing Program is not able to accept advance placement students that are not Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs).

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?


Watch the Program Prerequisites overview video


Healthcare Experience

Experience in healthcare may be demonstrated by certification or training in an allied healthcare field. Other experience will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis by program staff. Do not turn in original certificates or licenses. Please follow the instructions on the form regarding which documentation to submit. Healthcare experience must be approved by the program prior to applying.

Healthcare Experience Verification Form (For DTA/MRP RN Program (full & part-time) & PN Cert Entry Only)

Applicants with previously approved Healthcare Experience Verifications forms do not need to re-submit within the five years of approval.

Early Program Course Requirements



 The following courses must be completed with a B (3.0) or higher in each course:

  • Intro to Statistics (MATH& 146)
  • Human A & P 1 (BIOL& 241)
  • Human A & P 2 (BIOL& 242)
  • Microbiology (BIOL& 260)
  • Introduction to Chemistry (CHEM& 121 or CHEM& 161)
  • English Composition I (ENGL& 101)
  • Lifespan Psychology (PSYC& 200)

The following courses must be completed with a C (2.0) or higher in each course

  • General Psychology (PSYC& 100)
  • General Biology with lab (BIOL& 160)
  • Five (5) credits of Communication Electives (CMST& 210 can no longer be accepted as a Communications elective)
  • Ten (10) credits of Humanities Electives (Only 5 credits of foreign language can be accepted)

The Transcript Evaluation Process must be complete before apply to the program. See Transfer Student on the BTC website for more information.

Physical Requirements


Watch the Clinical Placement Requirements overview video


AFTER admissions acceptance into the program and prior to beginning program classes students must submit proof of all Clinical Placement Requirements.

Notice About Marijuana Usage

Students who test positive for THC (marijuana, including prescription marijuana) will not be allowed entrance to Nursing and Allied Health programs with clinical components. Drug screening is a requirement of our clinical partner agencies. Although private recreational and medical use of marijuana is legal in Washington state, our clinical partner agencies are governed by federal laws, and marijuana is a prohibited substance at the federal level. If your final drug test results are positive, you will be ineligible to participate in the program that year and will be allowed to reapply to the program 12 months from the date of the positive test.

What are My Next Steps?


Total Program Credits: 122

  • Current Students: Learn how to use this page to register for classes

  • Quarter 1

  • NURS 110Introduction to Health Concepts4 CR
  • NUTR 110Nutrition In Healthcare I1 CR
  • PHIL 110Ethics and Policy In Healthcare I1 CR
  • PSYC 110Psychosocial Issues In Healthcare I1 CR
  • Quarter 2

  • NURS 120Health and Illness Concepts 17 CR
  • NUTR 120Nutrition In Healthcare II1 CR
  • PSYC 120Psychosocial Issues In Healthcare II1 CR
  • Quarter 3

  • NURS 115Introduction to Health Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Quarter 4

  • NURS 125Health & Illness Concepts 1- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Quarter 5

  • NURS 130Health & Illness Concepts 23 CR
  • NUTR 130Nutrition In Healthcare III1 CR
  • PSYC 130Psychosocial Issues In Healthcare III2 CR
  • Quarter 6

  • NURS 210Acute Health Concepts5 CR
  • NUTR 210Nutrition In Healthcare IV1 CR
  • PHIL 210Ethics & Policy In Healthcare II1 CR
  • Quarter 7

  • NURS 135Health & Illness Concepts 2- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Quarter 8

  • NURS 215Acute Health Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Quarter 9

  • NURS 220Complex Health Concepts4 CR
  • NUTR 220Nutrition In Healthcare V1 CR
  • PSYC 220Psychosocial Issues In Healthcare IV1 CR
  • Quarter 10

  • NURS 230Professional Nursing Concepts3 CR
  • PHIL 230Ethics & Policy In Healthcare III3 CR
  • Quarter 11

  • NURS 225Complex Health Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Quarter 12

  • NURS 235Professional Nursing Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Pre-Program

  • BIOL& 160General Biology with Lab5 CR
  • BIOL& 241Human A & P 15 CR
  • BIOL& 242Human A & P 25 CR
  • BIOL& 260Microbiology5 CR
  • CHEM& 121Intro to Chemistry5 CR
  • ENGL& 101English Composition I5 CR
  • MATH& 146Introduction to Statistics5 CR
  • PSYC& 100General Psychology5 CR
  • PSYC& 200Lifespan Psychology5 CR
  • View past class requirements for this program.

Program Outcomes

The BTC Associate Degree Nursing graduate will be able to:

    • Demonstrate safe nursing care.
    • Identify culturally competent techniques to promote resilience in self and others.
    • Utilize therapeutic communication across a variety of settings.
    • Model integrity through ethical and professional behaviors.
    • Effectively implement the nursing process.

"Nursing Program Outcomes link to College and National Standards"



Bellingham Technical College’s Nursing Program delivers high-quality nursing education to benefit the health of our region.


The Nursing Program will be a recognized leader in providing innovative, effective, and progressive nursing education. The Program creates options for career success by developing a professional nursing workforce.


Nursing is both an art and a science; an art requiring creativity and skill, and a science requiring knowledge and the application of evidence-based practice. Nursing provides safe, patient-centered care in collaboration with the healthcare team.


In accordance with Bellingham Technical College’s values, the nursing program has established the following values:

  • Student-Centered: Use high-quality instruction to create pathways to reduce barriers and support student learning.
  • Collaborative: Strengthen student workplace readiness through partnerships and job placement services so students may achieve their education and career goals.
  • Principled: Cultivate a welcoming and accessible learning environment, which promotes student success through a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusiveness.
  • Responsive: Prioritize continuous quality improvement to keep pace with workforce needs and emerging industry trends.

NCLEX Pass Rates: All data reported by academic year 

BTC First Time Pass Rate 
2022-2023: 93% (4 graduating classes)
2021-2022: 92% (3 graduating classes)
2020-2021: 96% (4 graduating classes)

National First Time Pass Rate
2022-2023: 80%
2021-2022: 82%
2020-2021: 86%


Program Completion

BTC Program Completion

Within 100% of expected program length
2022-2023: 67%
2021-2022: 78%
2020-2021: 81%

Within 150% of expected program length
2022-2023: 74%
2021-2022: 80%
2020-2021: 90%

Job Placement 

BTC Graduate Job Placement

2022-2023: 91% (91% response rate)
2021-2022: 96% (100% response rate)
2020-2021: 94% (100% response rate)

Employment Outlook

Registered Nurses are the most advertised job online in Whatcom county. As the Baby Boomer population ages, the number of healthcare jobs in our community and beyond is rapidly growing. The demand for nursing program graduates is high: 97 percent of Bellingham Technical College Nursing Program students have jobs within nine months of graduating. The average annual wage in this field is $78,666, with an earning potential of about $96,658 per year.

BTC graduates are highly sought after by employers in our region and beyond. Graduates of BTC find top jobs in a variety of healthcare settings, including acute care hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, assisted living, skilled home care, hospice, clinics, day-surgery centers, schools, and public health.

Many of the Nursing Program graduates go on to complete their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). The DTA/MRP degree that BTC offers allows graduates to seamlessly transfer to WA State RN-BSN programs. A BTC Associate Degree in Nursing is the first step on a path to further career advancement towards a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) or a doctoral degree.

Faculty & Support

Nursing Support Specialist - Advising for all Nursing and Pre-Nursing Master of Education Bachelor of Science – Mathematics I am a dedicated, goal oriented, team player with eight years’ experience teaching and four years teaching Middle School Summer School, three years running an After School Homework Center, and four years as an Accounting Clerk. I have been a Site Team Chair, Mathematics Head Chair, and the Middle School and High School Curriculum Director for Mathematics. I like challenges and finding solutions to them. I thrive on providing excellence in all areas of my job. My undergraduate schooling was completed at Faulkner University in Montgomery, Alabama where I earned a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Mathematics and was awarded one of four of the University’s top awards, the George S. Benson Citizenship Award for Outstanding Contribution in Academics and Athletics. I have completed my Master of Education Degree and Teaching Certification in Secondary Education at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington

  • Degrees and Credentials

    AA, Registered Nurse, Skagit Valley College

    BS, Animal Science, Iowa State University

    BS, Nursing, University of Phoenix

    MSN, Nursing/Health Care Education, University of Phoenix

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State

Holly Kennedy has a Master's Degree in Nursing from the University of Washington and a Certificate from the University of Washington in Nurse Educator Specialty Training. She has over 27 years of experience providing nursing care to patients in a variety of settings. Her background includes acute care hospitals, home health, home infusion, industry, Sara Lee Corporation, American Red Cross and medical office nursing. Holly Kennedy has over 9 years experience as a medical office nurse and clinic coordinator. She is committed to nursing education and facilitating the best experience possible for students in the clinical setting.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    BS, Industrial Technology, Central Connecticut State University

    BS, Nursing, University of Victoria

    Certificate, Nurse Educator Specialist Training

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State

    Diploma, Nursing, Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing

    MN, Nursing, University of Washington

    License, Registered Nurse, Washington State

Tiffany began her nursing career as an LPN while immediately working toward her BSN. She graduated from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in 2005. She completed graduate school at Western Governor's University with a MSN-Ed in 2015 followed by earning her national certification as a Certified Nurse Educator (CNE) in 2016.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State

    Certificate, Nurse Educator, National League for Nursing

    Licensed Practical Nurse, Louisiana Technical College

    BSN, Nursing, University of Louisiana at Lafayette

    MSN, Nursing Education, Western Governors University, Washington

Diana began as a nursing instructor at Bellingham Technical College in 2010. She has worked as a nurse in many settings in both Whatcom and Skagit County. Areas of experience include Acute Care, Long Term Care, Labor and Delivery, Postpartum, Health Clinics, Camp Nurse, and School Nurse. Diana began her nursing education at Skagit Valley College, and completed her Master of Nursing degree at University of Washington Bothell. Her research and projects focus on improving the health of student nurses and clients by promoting exercise and a plant strong diet.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    License, Registered Nurse, Washington State

    ATA, Nursing, Skagit Valley College

    BA, Biology, Western Washington University

    MN, Nursing, University of Washington

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State

Patrick Harris became a nursing instructor at Bellingham Technical College in 2021. He is currently the course lead for NURS 210/215. Prior to relocating to Washington, he worked for five years as a nursing instructor at Umpqua Community College (UCC) in Roseburg, Oregon. Patrick obtained his Associates of Applied Science in Nursing at Umpqua Community College in 2004 and his Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 2006 at Kaplan University. He received his Master of Science in Nursing in 2017 through Western Governors University while working as a nursing instructor at UCC. Patrick has worked as a Registered Nurse since 2004, primarily in the emergency department with stints on the medical/surgical unit and in the cardiac cath lab. Patrick was a CNA and LPN prior to receiving his RN licensure. He worked in emergency departments in Oregon as both a traveling nurse as well as a full-time employee. He has worked in a variety of hospitals, ranging from a rural critical access hospital on the Oregon coast to a large hospital in Portland. He fulfilled a dream of his by working in Anchorage, Alaska as a traveling nurse prior to accepting a full time teaching job at UCC. He continued to work part time in the emergency department after becoming a nursing instructor.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State

    AAS, Nursing, Umpqua Community College

    MS, Nursing Education, Western Governors University

    BS, Nursing, Kaplan University

    License, Registered Nurse, Washington State

Natasha graduated with an associate degree in Nursing from Olympic College. She went on to complete her bachelor’s and Masters in Nursing from Washington State University. She is currently working on her PhD in Nursing at Washington State University. She has worked as an RN since 2015. During this time, she has worked on a medical-surgical unit and obtained her Medical-Surgical Nursing certification. She went on to work in the float pool covering units such as psych, med-surg, rehab, oncology, and neurology. Her most recent nursing experience has been with a Progressive Care Unit, where she obtained her progressive care certification.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    BSN, Nursing, Washington State University

    ADN, Nursing (RN), Olympic College

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State

    BA, Psychology, University of Southern California

    MSN, Population Health, Nursing Education Certificate, Washington State University

    License, Registered Nurse, Washington State

Mary Curran has experience in providing nursing care in a variety of settings. Mary began her pursuit in the field of nursing at Bellingham Technical College by completing the nursing assistant program in 1991 and practical nursing program in 1993. The solid nursing foundation gained at Bellingham Technical College laid the ground work for her journey in nursing. Working at each level Mary continued her nursing education: Associate's Degree in Nursing, Bachelor's Degree in Nursing, and Master's Degree in Nursing. Mary is dedicated to quality nursing care and education through role modeling.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    License, Registered Nurse, Washington State

    ATA, Nursing, Skagit Valley College

    MN, Nursing, University of Washington

    BS, Nursing, University of Washington

    Certificate, Professional Technical Education, Washington State


If you have questions about this program or want help with the admissions steps to Bellingham Technical College, please email

Current students wanting academic planning and support, can connect with the program Instructor(s) or email