MCCSN FAQ's

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Last Updated 08/04/2017


  • When are applications accepted for the school of nursing?

    Applications for the class entering Fall 2018 will be available online at www.mpc.edu/schoolofnursing beginning September 11 , 2017, and will be accepted through September 29, 2017 at 3 pm.  Official transcripts and other documentation must be submitted (US mail or hand deliver)  directly to the nursing office before the deadline in order for the application to be considered complete. A link to all required internal forms will be available in the application. 

  • What can I do now to be best prepared for success in nursing school?

    Nursing school, like the nursing profession, is a commitment to professionalism, life-long learning, and ultimately to advocating for patients and families. It involves a measure of selflessness while caring for patients in an environment that can be tense, technical and therapeutic all at the same time. Quality and Safety in Nursing Education competencies are integral to the MCCSN program, and require a high level of cognitive skill and integrity. The practice of nursing at the entry level also involves physical demands, hands-on care, and varied shift work. Getting to know what nurses really do is the best way to have your eyes open before embarking on this wonderfully difficult and rewarding journey called nursing school. And of course, a solid academic foundation is essential! The following are encouraged “while you wait”, or while you are thinking about nursing:

    •  Any health care work or volunteer experience is helpful, but patient contact is key. Much of nursing care depends on the ability to communicate effectively with patients, who are often not feeling much like communicating.  Obtaining your CNA certification and working in a health care facility is one way to gain valuable patient contact experience.
    • Do a self-assessment. Do you like working with people? Do you accept conflict as an aspect of teamwork to be managed? Can you adjust to varied shift work at 8-hour intervals with long periods on your feet and using computers? (e.g. students may report for duty at 6:15 am, or at 2 pm). Do you like changing situations where you need to critically think and to locate and apply new information quickly? Do you value advocating for the needs of others even when it is uncomfortable? (YES answers are a good fit for nursing as a career choice…)

                You can assess your match with the essential "technical skills" by consulting this list on the MCCSN webpage.

    • Get good grades!  Really…! Check out the many services MPC has to offer for College Success at  http://www.mpc.edu/student-services/college-success
    • Don’t leave the academic counselor out of your plans! Make an appointment to discuss your goal, make an education plan…and stick to it!  Nursing students usually accumulate “excessive units” for financial aid purposes. Don’t burden yourself with unnecessary course work or repetitions because you lacked the appropriate counseling.  Check in often (once per semester if possible) and be sure to get your education plan in writing to avoid misunderstandings.
    • Check the MCCSN webpage often for changes. And attend an info session once per semester if possible.
    • Make a financial plan to be a full-time student. Students who are successful have planned to work very little while enrolled in the nursing program. Nursing  classes total 9-10 units each semester, and there may be graduation requirements you still need to meet, and enrichment courses as well. Class time, readings and homework, studying, clinical shifts (2 per week on average) when added together make for a very full week. You will need time to rest and spend with family too, so the time available to work is very little if you want to be successful (we recommend no more than 16 hours per week). So start saving your money, make a plan for help with family responsibilities, and plan to be fully immersed in your education for 2 more years AFTER you are accepted to the program.  It may seem obvious, but life does happen…nursing school is not the best time to make major life changes if you can avoid them.
    • Speaking of money, complete your FAFSA every year and follow the steps of the financial aid process. There are also numerous private scholarships available if you don’t qualify for financial aid, and even if you do. But know that any scholarship may affect your financial aid award.
    • NURS 150 (Nursing Program Readiness), or a comparable course from another institution, is a great primer for the nursing program. It offers learning styles assessment, TEAS prep, study techniques, “practice” exams at the application level of thinking, tips for non-native English speakers and more. It will help you to assess your aptitude for the nursing program and for the nursing profession.
  • Can I be accepted to the nursing program if I have a criminal/conviction history?

     

    You will be accepted before a background check is done.

    Consistent with Education Code 66055.9, students are required to comply with background check authorizations as required by clinical agencies. The school does not seek the specific results of any student’s background check. And background checks are not requested until after an applicant is accepted. However, the clinical facility retains the prerogative to deny any student access to their facility based on the result.  Accepted students pay a fee to a designated vendor for the purpose of conducting the background check.  Human Resource personnel at designated clinical sites are given access to the results. In the event that MCCSN is notified by the clinical facility that a student has been denied access, the school will make every attempt to find alternate placement. But if the student cannot be placed in an affiliated clinical facility which meets the objectives of the particular course, s/he would not be able to progress in the nursing program.

    Applicants for nursing licensure are required to be fingerprinted separately for purposes of conducting a criminal history record check by the California Department of Justice (consistent with Section 144, Business and Professions Code). Be aware that licensure as a registered nurse may be denied for crimes or acts substantially related to the qualifications, functions or duties of a nurse, or for falsifying statements on the application for licensure. The application requires disclosure of prior convictions. Detailed information is available on the California Board of Registered Nursing website:

                        http://www.rn.ca.gov/enforcement/convictions.shtml#confaqs.

    Students are advised to consider the impact of these regulations on their potential or licensure before applying or pursuing a nursing career.

     

  • Is there a waitlist that holds my place so I can be admitted to a future class?

     

    No. A sufficient number of alternates are selected every year to ensure a full class for the fall semester. There is no “waitlist”, only alternate numbers which are assigned when the class is selected in order to fill every available seat for the subsequent fall class ONLY. Alternates who are not admitted by the time the fall semester begins must re-apply the following year.  Alternates who again score in the top 40% after Phase 2 will be admitted ahead of those in the same score group who were not alternates the previous year. (i.e. alternates from the previous are given preference as tied scoring allows). The alternate "number" applies ONLY to the respective fall class and is not retained for subsequent application cycles.

    The multi-criterion selection process is explained in more detail in the screening criteria tool available on the MCCSN webpage. The selection is based on the top 40% of scores in the applicant pool for the given year.  Accepted applicants may not “defer” admission to a later year. Accepted applicants who choose not to enroll into the cohort for which they are accepted must re-apply.  

    Applicants are expected to accept a seat in the nursing program in good faith, prepared to be a full-time student for the entire duration of the nursing program. Reapplications of students who withdraw from their first semester within the first six weeks will not be considered for two years. At the time of reapplication, the applicant must submit a letter of petition explaining how circumstances have changed to support the student’s full-time enrollment in the nursing program, and this explanation will be evaluated before a Phase 1 decision is made.

     

  • Can I re-take the TEAS for a better score?

    Higher TEAS results award more points in the selection process.  You may re-take the TEAS at your own expense for a higher score, but you must wait a minimum of one year from the previous attempt. Any selected applicant who does not achieve a minimum composite score of 62 or greater on the first TEAS attempt (looking back for two years) must complete the remediation process as approved by the Director, School of Nursing. The remediation process does include a re-take funded by the college.

    Refer to the scoring tool available on the MCCSN webpage. More detailed information about TEAS is available on the MCCSN webpage.  Contact the Director, School of Nursing for more information about TEAS remediation.

  • How often does the nursing program admit new students? How many?

    The nursing program admits generic (first semester) students once per year in the fall semester. Applications are accepted every fall semester for the class entering the following year. The dates when applications are accepted are continuously posted on the MCCSN webpage. At this time, program funding is enhanced by a Chancellor’s Office Enrollment grant which accommodates a total of 32 new students in the fall semester. Future enrollment may change depending on available funding.

    Qualified LVNs may seek advanced placement into the second or third semester of the program if space is available, after individual counseling. Submit an application during the usual fall application cycle and indicate that you are an LVN. Please refer to the policy for Advanced Placement for LVNs on the MCCSN webpage.  

    A policy for students who request credit for prior education in the field of nursing is posted to the website, consistent with SB466. This policy includes those with previous military education and experience.

  • I’m interested in studying nursing. Where should I begin?

    Anyone who is interested in studying nursing should begin by visiting an academic counselor to map out an education plan and to thoroughly understand admission and graduation requirements. To schedule an appointment, call 831-646-4020. In order to see a counselor, you must be a current MPC student, or have submitted an Application for Admission to the Admissions and Records Office. You can download a paper application under “Admissions and Records” on the MPC website, or link to CCC Apply and complete it online. This application is free.

    International students should contact International Student Programs for guidance:  831-645-1357 or email internationalcenter@mpc.edu

    * Check the MCCSN webpage frequently for updates and attend an info session! Consider taking NURS 150, Nursing Program Readiness, to get introduced to nursing as a career choice and to learn what makes a nursing student successful.

  • Do I need to disclose my social security number in order to be accepted to the nursing program?

    Social Security numbers are needed by the designated vendor for the purpose of background checks as required by the clinical facilities.

    Also, you are required to provide your social security or Tax ID number in order to sit for the licensure exam. According to Section 30(c) of the Business and Professions code, the Board of Registered Nursing may not process any application for licensure unless the applicant provides a U.S. social security or Tax ID number. Any licensee failing to provide the federal identification number or social security number will be reported by the licensing board to the Franchise Tax Board and, if failing to provide it after notification, will be subject to a penalty (pursuant to Section 19528 of the Revenue and Taxation Code).

  • Does MPC accept financial aid?

    MPC participates in Title IV Student Aid and Cal Grant programs, and adheres to all applicable requirements and restrictions. Financial Aid is money that is given, paid, or loaned on your behalf to assist you in paying for college.  Be aware that financial aid will not cover all of your educational expenses and it is the student's responsibility to budget properly for the academic year, with or without financial aid. You can find much more information on the Financial Aid menu on the MPC website. Approximate costs of the program are linked on the MCCSN webpage.

  • How long does the Nursing Program take?

    The nursing coursework itself consists of 4 semesters (starting fall semester), with optional courses available in the summer for additional supervised clinical experiences, basic EKG and other offerings as available. The pre-requisite course work encompasses 26 units of Science, Math, English, Lifespan Development, and Pharmacology. A full time student can complete the prerequisite courses in 2 semesters, but the time frame depends on previously completed transferrable courses as well as individual needs. It’s important to plan a manageable course load in the prerequisites so that you can achieve high grades, yet balance the minimum course load requirements for financial aid if needed. Once the nursing coursework begins, there is no part-time option. For this reason, most students try to complete all additional degree requirements (9 units that are not prerequisites) before entering the nursing program.

  • Does it matter how long ago I took the pre-requisite courses?

    At this time, there is no recency requirement. However, students who are fresh in math, science and language usage will do better on the TEAS exam, a pre-entrance diagnostic and intervention tool used by the school of nursing to screen applicants. And of course, students who have a strong foundation in the prerequisite sciences (anatomy, physiology and microbiology) will also do better in applying nursing content in the program. Potential applicants are advised to refresh their knowledge of algebra, foundational sciences, and English usage if it has been more than 2 years since these courses were taken. Also, you should plan to study for the TEAS exam by obtaining prep materials from the ATI website www.atitesting.com, or by enrolling in NURS 150 (Nursing Program Readiness).

  • How are new nursing students selected after they apply?

    Applicants are selected using a multi-criterion selection process whereby points are awarded for various criteria, heavily weighted by science and non-science GPA, as well TEAS result. Student applications are scored, and then selected from the top 40% of the applicant pool.  The criteria include academic degrees or certificates, grade point average in relevant coursework, relevant work or volunteer experience, life experiences and special circumstances specifically listed, advanced coursework or proficiency in a language other than English.  A second phase of scoring is based on the current version of the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS). The detailed screening criteria are available on the MCCSN webpage. The selection process is discussed in detail at all public info sessions held at the school of nursing; dates are posted on the MCCSN webpage.

  • Is there a scoring penalty for repeating coursework?

    No. Under the previous selection process which used the Chancellor’s Office Success Index score, there was a penalty (points reduced) for repeated pre-requisite coursework.  Under the current multi-criterion selection process, there is no such penalty. The highest grade as verified by official transcripts will be applied to the score. Contact the academic counseling office for the best advice about repeating courses for higher grades, as there are college restrictions and financial aid implications.

  • Does MPC offer specific nursing courses (e.g. obstetrics, medical-surgical nursing) to foreign-educated nurses who are seeking U.S. licensure and were directed by the BRN to complete this coursework?

    No.

    This question arises occasionally when a foreign-educated nurse is applying for California licensure and has been directed by the BRN to take specific courses in the U.S. The 5 pre-licensure specialties (med-surg, obstetrics, pediatrics, geriatrics, and psych/mental health) are offered within combined courses at MCCSN. That is, none of them are stand-alone courses that would fulfill this unique need for an isolated component.

    Foreign-educated nurses who seek admission to the program as a first semester student are subject to all of the published prerequisite coursework and selection processes, including transcript evaluation by an appropriate foreign transcript evaluation service.

    Foreign-educated nurses who are seeking specific courses in BRN-required specialties may contact the Director, School of Nursing (831-646-4258) for suggestions about programs that may offer them.