JFK Medical Center (JFK) was recently recognized as a key partner at the Workforce Florida Summit for its pilot program for Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) training for its employees. The award for Outstanding Employer Services was presented by Workforce Florida to Workforce Alliance for initiating the program in partnership with JFK Medical Center, ACS, Palm Beach Community College (PBCC) and the Palm Beach County Literacy Coalition (PBCLC).

Kylie Watson instructs student Marichu Watkins as Terry Eggenberger, RN, MSN, Workforce and Organizational Development Project Director, looks on.

PBCC manages pre-course testing and LPN course instruction. JFK, in conjunction with Palms West, Columbia and All About Staffing, funds the tuition and expenses for the customized LPN program for 25 students. Once the students have obtained their LPN certification, they will work at one of the participating hospitals.

“This program addresses the nursing shortage while providing employees training to improve their job skills and enhance their careers,” said Terry Eggenberger, RN, MSN, Workforce and Organizational Development Program Director at JFK. “This is an example of organizations in our community coming together to provide high quality, accessible education.”

Eligible students have a high school diploma, GED or a basic adult education score placing them at or above the 11th grade level. PBCLC provides remedial assistance for those who need help meeting the academic requirements to qualify for the courses. The LPN students are also provided with mentors and tutoring to ensure their success in the program.

This unique curriculum, which is accredited by PBCC, departs from the usual 12-month full time course, allowing students to take the courses part time for about 18 months while continuing to work. The program is also unique because it allows for the school classroom and clinical lab to be located on the JFK campus.