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Nursing - DTA-MRP - LPN to RN

Bellingham Technical College Registered Nursing Program is nationally accredited through the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)

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

If you are a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) in WA State and are interested in continuing your education to become a Registered Nurse (RN), then Bellingham Technical College’s Nursing Program LPN-RN option is for you!

Attend an online LPN to RN Information Session to  learn more about the BTC LPN-RN Nursing Program option and get information about the admissions process and requirements of our program.

Attend the online session and learn about our Nursing & Allied Health Programs, and about funding and student support resources that can help you get started at BTC.

To learn more about other Bellingham Technical College programs you may be interested in, join us for a Virtual Program Info Session. Prior sign up is required. If you do not see an Info Session for the program you are interested in, email for more information.

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.

There is one Nursing Program at BTC which has three program options, Registered Nursing (RN), LPN-RN, and Practical Nursing (PN). The two-year registered nurse associate degree is intended for students new to the nursing field and is a full-time option only. 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 two-year full-time RN and 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.

The BTC LPN-RN Program is excited to be able to offer LPN-RN students the DTA/MRP associate degree. This degree was collaboratively developed by the Washington State community and technical colleges and four-year universities to create a streamlined pathway to the Bachelors of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. 

Nursing Student Handbook 2020-2021

Please 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

92% Average placement rate for program graduates

$64,522 starting annual wage
$78,666 average annual wage
$96,658 potential annual wage
  • Employment and Wage Data Sources

    BTC graduate employment rates:
    The graduate employment rate reflects placement rates of students who graduated from BTC in 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17. The Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges Data Linking for Outcomes Assessment database pulls from Unemployment Insurance (UI) data across Washington and Oregon. UI data do not reflect BTC graduates who (a) are employed in states beyond those listed above or outside of the United States, (b) are self-employed, (c) are active duty members of the armed forces, (d) continued on to another educational institution, and/or (e) did not provide a social security number while enrolled at BTC.

    Washington State Employment Security Department 2018 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates ( reflect 2014-2017 employment

    Starting annual wage = 25th percentile
    Average annual wage = 50th percentile
    Potential annual wage = 75th percentile

Estimated Program Costs

Tuition Fees and Rates

Program fees address distinct and specified costs such as lab assistants, supplies, materials, equipment, rentals, software licensing, replacement and upgrade, maintenance, and other operational costs.

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

Apply now for the LPN-RN Part-Time Evening Cohort!

All students interested in the Nursing Program should meet with the Nursing Student Navigator, to schedule an appointment contact Admissions & Advising at 360.752.8345.

The Nursing Program enters advanced placement LPN-RN applicants into cohorts utilizing a program-ready list (waitlist). Complete applications are placed on the program-ready list in the order in which they are received by the Nursing Program.

LPN-RN DTA Education Planning Guide

LPN-RN Admissions Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The program will no longer be entering LPNs into the second year of the full-time Nursing Program instead all advanced placement LPN students will apply to the new part-time evening cohort. This cohort will enter 20 students in Spring quarter every two years as demand dictates. Next possible cohort start is April 2021.

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?

ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) v.6

Applicants must score at the "PROFICIENT" level or higher in each of the four areas on one transcript. See the ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills handout for more information about this entrance assessment.

Having trouble scheduling your ATI TEAS assessment? More options are available! Email your advisor: or 

Healthcare Experience

LPN-RN applicants must have an active, unencumbered WA Sate LPN license and submit the Verification of Work Experience Form documenting 1,000 hours of work as an LPN within the last five years. Proof of current LPN license is required to be included with LPN-RN admission application.

Verification of Work Experience as LPN Form (LPN-RN only)

Currently submissions are only accepted by email to

Pre-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 Interpersonal Communications can no longer be accepted as a Communication elective)
  • Ten (10) credits of Humanities Electives (Only 5 credits of foreign language can be accepted)

30 credits of Practical Nursing - only required for students who completed Practical Nursing education at a college other than BTC 

The Transcript Evaluation Process must be complete before an application is submitted.


LPN-RN Program Application

Program-ready applicants are invited to submit an LPN-RN Admission Application. 

LPN-RN Admission Application form

Currently only emailed submissions are accepted to

Physical Requirements

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

What are My Next Steps?


Total Program Credits: 47

  • Quarter 1

  • NURS 210Acute Health Concepts5 CR
  • NUTR 215Nutrition in Healthcare IV1 CR
  • PHIL 215Ethics & Policy in Healthcare II1 CR
  • NUTR 115Nutrition in Healthcare I1 CR
  • PHIL 115Ethics and Policy in Healthcare I1 CR
  • Quarter 2

  • NURS 215Acute Health Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • Quarter 3

  • NURS 220Complex Health Concepts4 CR
  • NUTR 216Nutrition in Healthcare V1 CR
  • PSYC 215Psychosocial Issues in Healthcare IV1 CR
  • NUTR 116Nutrition in Healthcare II1 CR
  • NUTR 117Nutrition in Healthcare III1 CR
  • Quarter 4

  • NURS 225Complex Health Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR
  • PSYC 117Psychosocial Issues in Healthcare III2 CR
  • Quarter 5

  • NURS 230Professional Nursing Concepts3 CR
  • PHIL 216Ethics & Policy in Healthcare III3 CR
  • PSYC 115Psychosocial Issues in Healthcare I1 CR
  • PSYC 116Psychosocial Issues in Healthcare II3 CR
  • Quarter 6

  • NURS 235Professional Nursing Concepts- Clinical Lab6 CR

Program Outcomes

The BTC Associate Degree Nursing graduate will be able to: 

  • Nursing Care: Integrate the nursing process to deliver individualized culturally competent care.

  • Self-Care Promotion: Formulate strategies to promote the health of self and others.

  • Professionalism: Model integrity through professional boundaries, ethical behaviors, and respectful communication.

  • Collaborative Leadership: Maximize positive health outcomes through the promotion of evidence-based clinical care within the interdisciplinary team.

  • Clinical Judgment: Model safe nursing care by integrating critical thinking, evidence-based practice, and prioritization.


BTC graduated the first cohort of LPN-RN DTA/MRP students August 2020

First Attempt NCLEX Pass Rates From NCQAC Quarterly Reports

1st Quarter - No graduates
2nd Quarter - No graduates
3rd Quarter - No graduates
4th Quarter – 95%


Summary of Annual Program Completion Data

Cohort (Grad month year) - 08/20
20 began, 19 graduated
95% Retention


Job Placement Summary (Academic Year and Job Placement)

2019-2020: 75% employed 9 months after graduation*

*15 of the 19 graduates responded to survey

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

Photo of Joan Humen
Joan Humen

Joan has been a nurse for 35 years. Joan graduated from Bellingham Technical College in 1979 and completed her BSN at Washington State University in 1983. In 2014 Joan completed her Master's of Nursing. Joan spent 30 years in industry before leaving to teach at BTC in 2008.

Photo of Rika Winquist
Rika Winquist

Photo of Shane Weg
Shane Weg

Photo of Diana Davidson
Diana Davidson

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.

Photo of Tiffany Schuman
Tiffany Schuman

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.

Photo of Jennifer Tachiyama
Jennifer Tachiyama

Nursing Student Navigator - 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

Photo of Mary Curran
Mary Curran

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

    M.N., Nursing, University of Washington - 2004

    B.S., Nursing, University of Washington - 2004

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2004

    A.T.A., Nursing, Skagit Valley College - 2004

    Registered Nurse License, State of Washington - 2004

Photo of Holly Kennedy
Holly Kennedy

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

    Registered Nurse License, State of Washington - 2004

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2004

    Diploma Vancouver General Hospital School of Nursing - 2004

    Nurse Educator Specialist Training Certificate - 2004

    B.S., Nursing, University of Victoria - 2004

    M.N., Nursing, University of Washington - 2004

    B.S., Industrial Technology, Central Connecticut State University - 2004