Joliet Junior College Nursing Program Review

Joliet Junior College (JJC), founded in 1901, has the distinction of being the first public community college. It was originally intended as a post-high school, transitional program. Later, it began offering technical degrees and certificates, as well as preparing students to transfer into four-year colleges. Over 35,000 students take classes at Joliet Junior College’s campuses.

Nursing students study on the main campus in Joliet. Prospective nurses can enroll in either an associate degree program or a certificate program, or they can complete a nurse assistant training course. The nursing programs are accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission and approved by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

Certified Nurse Assistant Training Program

The quickest way into the nursing profession is as a Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA). Joliet Junior College prepares students for this profession through its one-semester, seven-and-a-half credit hour program. Before taking the program, a student must complete a CPR course (which can be done through Joliet Junior College). Once enrolled, the student will receive a combination of classroom and hands-on instruction. Over the course of the program, he will receive 154 hours of instruction, which is well above the Illinois requirement. Upon graduation, he is eligible to take the licensing exam offered by the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Practical Nursing Certificate

The Practical Nursing Certificate program at Joliet Junior College is intense; students can expect to spend up to eighteen hours a week in the classroom and on clinical rotations and should expect to study at least twenty hours a week on top of that. Due to the rigorous nature of the program, it is only available on a full-time basis. Students in the certificate program must complete forty-one credit hours. On these, seventeen are general education courses in biology, English, and psychology, and twenty-five are nursing courses. The program takes a year to complete. Upon graduation, students are eligible to take the National Council Licensing Exam for Practical Nurses (NCLEX_PN). If they pass the test, they earn the title of Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) and can provide nursing care under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN).

Associate of Applied Science in Nursing

Students who wish to enter the nursing field as RNs can enroll in Joliet Junior College’s Associate of Applied Science in Nursing (AAS in Nursing) program. This is a two-year program, consisting of seventy-two credit hours. Enrolled students take thirty-one credit hours of general education classes and forty-one credit hours of nursing classes. Students should complete at least three of the general education courses (two in biology and one in English) prior to enrolling in the program in the fall. The nursing courses start each fall; the program of study includes one summer semester. A Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) may receive two credits toward the first nursing class. At the conclusion of the program, a graduate is prepared to take the National Council Licensing Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX_RN).

Associate of Applied Science in Nursing – LPN Transition Program

Joliet Junior College offers a special track for LPNs to earn the full AAS in Nursing degree. While LPNs must complete all the same general education requirements as traditional AAS in Nursing students, they can place out of the first year of nursing courses, based on their previous education and their work experience. Instead, LPNs take a six-credit transition class and then bridge into the upper-level nursing courses. The length of the program can vary, depending on how many general education courses an LPN has to take in addition to the upper-level nursing courses. At the conclusion of the program, the LPN is ready to take the NCLEX_RN and move up the career ladder.

Joliet Junior College

1215 Houbolt Road

Joliet, IL 60431