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LVN Programs in San Antonio: Online and On-Campus Training

LVN programs in San Antonio can get you into the healthcare workforce fast. This guide details on-campus and online LVN programs in San Antonio to help you find a program that’s right for you.


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The world of healthcare is booming and shows no signs of slowing. Those wanting to move into the workforce quickly can opt for certificate and diploma programs, which often take about a year to complete. That’s the case with the licensed vocational nursing (LVN) program that prepares students to move into work as an LVN after completion of a state-approved program. Becoming an LVN in San Antonio allows you to work in a variety of healthcare facilities, all while under the guidance of a registered nurse or other healthcare professional.

There are many LVN programs in San Antonio, from fully on-campus versions to those moving to a more hybrid approach with some courses provided online. This guide tells you about becoming an LVN in San Antonio, including a spotlight on schools that provide the program, details about what training will be like, cost, and more.

College Spotlights: Best LVN Programs in San Antonio

When choosing an LVN program in San Antonio, do your research. There are many good options, but you want one that is state-approved and accredited and that has the solid student support services and affordability you need. To help you in your search, we’ve spotlighted three excellent schools where you can earn your LVN in San Antonio. See who stands out for 2021.

St Philips College

Part of the Alamo Colleges District and accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, St. Philips College in San Antonio offers the Vocational Nursing Certificate for those wanting to get into the nursing workforce quickly. This full-time program requires 40 hours per week of study for one year. Approved by the Texas Board of Nursing, the program allows graduates to sit for the NCLEX-PN upon graduation.

St. Philips’ curriculum covers a breadth of topics, including ethical and legal aspects of nursing, nutrition, communication, body structure and function, gerontology, and administration of medication and solutions. It also looks at various types of nursing, including medical, surgical, pediatric, and mental health. This program includes not only classroom study but also supervised clinical experiences in clinics, hospitals, and long-term care facilities.

Galen College of Nursing

The Galen College of Nursing is home to a Practical/Vocational Nursing Program that is fully approved by the Texas State Board of Nursing and accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. This program requires 12 months of full-time study or 21 months of part-time study. It is a quarter-based program offering four start times yearly.

Small classes, strong faculty support, and hands-on supervised clinical segments help ensure students have the tools they need to succeed. No prerequisites are required to begin in this program, but students must have their GED or high school diploma and effective English communication skills. They must also have minimum scores on entrance exams. Students also need to meet other requirements, including a physical examination and up-to-date immunizations, before they can begin the program.

Baptist Health System School of Health Professions

The Licensed Vocational Nurse program through the Baptist Health System offers clinical time in a variety of Baptist Health System facilities, including long-term care, hospitals, and clinics. Approved by the Texas State Board of Nursing, this LVN program is taught by experienced nursing faculty, resulting in the #1 NCLEX-PN pass rate in Bexar County.

There are two application deadlines, one in fall and one in spring. Students must complete six to eight hours of credits in anatomy and physiology as well as three credits in growth and development before enrolling. TEAS VI exams are also required and must be taken within two years of applying. Those with a valid CNA license get a discount on the overall cost of the program. Expect one year of full-time study, including some night and weekend clinical hours, to complete the program.

FAQs About LVN Programs in San Antonio

What skills do you learn in LVN programs in San Antonio?

Licensed vocational nurses work closely with registered nurses to provide the best care possible to patients in a variety of healthcare settings. To that end, LVNs need a significant breadth of knowledge. During an LVN program, students learn about anatomy and physiology, professional development, nutrition, growth and development, basic nursing skills, pharmacology, mental illness, clinical expectations, wound management, data collection, patient education, and more. These skills are honed in the clinical setting, first during the program and then during real-life work under the guidance of a registered nurse or other healthcare professional.

How much do LVN programs cost in San Antonio?

In most cases, LVN programs in San Antonio are based on a one-time payment for the training, which usually takes about one year. Some programs allow tuition to be paid quarterly, while others request tuition be paid in full at the start of the program. Keep in mind there are student loans, grants, scholarships, and other financial options that can help pay for the cost of the program. The programs highlighted below give you an idea of the cost of LVN programs in San Antonio.

Galen College of Nursing

Practical/Vocational Nursing

$21,541 Total Tuition

St Philip’s College

Vocational Nursing Program

$3,000 Total Tuition (in-state rates)

Baptist Health System School of Health Professions

Licensed Vocational Nurse

$12,900 Total Tuition

Can I get financial aid to help pay for my LVN program in San Antonio?

Paying for LVN programs in San Antonio can seem daunting, but there are several ways to help fund your education. These include scholarships, grants, and loans. Some nursing associations, such as the Texas Nurses Association, provide grants specifically for nursing students in the state. The state of Texas also offers numerous options for student loan repayment programs. To learn more about financial aid for LVN programs in San Antonio, check out our general financial aid guide, as well as our practical nursing scholarships guide.

How long do LVN programs in San Antonio take to finish?

In most cases, even online LVN programs in San Antonio take only one year of full-time study to obtain a certificate. Part-time programs like that at Galen College of Nursing might take up to 21 months of study. In some cases, as with the Baptist Health Systems School of Health Professions, prerequisites are required to enter a program. This can add up to a full semester to a full-time program.

Inside Look at Online LVN Programs in San Antonio

Earning an online LVN in San Antonio is often not an option since most programs are entirely in person and require classroom time. However, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, some programs have hybrid options that allow students to take many classes online. Clinical hours are still expected to be completed at a designated site. Some may find hybrid learning a bit easier than traditional learning since they don’t have to commute to school, don’t have to be in the classroom at a set time, and have more flexibility with juggling work and school responsibilities. However, online courses are just as rigorous as those on campus and require just as much time. For some, they are more difficult given that self-discipline and motivation are absolute requirements for succeeding in online learning. Learn more about how remote learning works in our guide to online LPN/LVN programs.

Common Questions About Online LVN Programs in San Antonio

Will earning my credential from an online LVN program in San Antonio impact my ability to get certified or licensed?

When a school offers an online program, always make sure they are accredited and approved by the state board of nursing. If they are, you can rest assured that no matter the delivery method – online, hybrid, or on-campus – the program allows for certification or licensing as long as it states such on the website. Call the school to be certain before enrollment.

Will employers care if I took some of my LVN classes online?

As long as the program is approved and accredited, you will be just as well-trained online as if you took the courses in person. In fact, in many cases, there is no indication that you took online courses at all. Your diploma or certificate will look the same as that awarded to those who took the program on campus at the same institution.

Are online LVN programs more affordable than campus programs in San Antonio?

Many LVN programs in San Antonio are moving to a hybrid approach because of the changes wrought by the pandemic. However, this shift to online learning doesn’t necessarily mean the program will be cheaper in terms of tuition. Students who take online courses might save money in other ways, though, such as by using e-textbooks, not having a commute, and not paying parking or other fees.

Can I complete my LVN training in San Antonio faster by taking classwork online?

Though the online courses might allow you to complete the classwork portion faster, there is still the clinical component, and that is often handled in a cohort fashion where students move forward as a team. Given this, the graduation date is the same regardless of how many courses are taken online.

LVN Licensing Information and Requirements in San Antonio

Becoming an LVN in San Antonio requires passing the NCLEX-PN exam, which is required for licensure in all states. In Texas, you can also pass the State Board Test Pool Examination (SBTPE) with a minimum score of 350. Other requirements for licensure include:

  • Holding a GED or high school diploma
  • Completing a vocational/practical nursing program through a school approved by the State Board of Nursing
  • Maintaining a minimum of a “C” grade in all nursing courses
  • Paying a $186.00 non-refundable fee.
  • Submitting to a criminal background check
  • Completing the Texas Nursing Jurisprudence Exam

Please note that the rules for licensing as an LVN in San Antonio vary if you are already a licensed nurse coming in from another jurisdiction. In that case, you need to apply for a six-month temporary permit to work while you seek official licensure in the state.

To learn more about exactly what you’ll need to become an LVN in San Antonio, visit the Requirements for Texas Licensure at the Texas Board of Nursing and our guide to LVN programs in Texas.

How Much You Can Earn as an LVN in San Antonio

Licensed vocational nurses in San Antonio make slightly under the average for LVNs in Texas and the United States as a whole. However, remember that other factors come into play as well, including the cost of living. Consider that living in Dallas costs more than living in San Antonio, which explains why LVNs are paid a higher wage in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Those living in San Antonio can live comfortably on slightly lower pay.

Annual Earnings for Licensed Vocational Nurses in San Antonio

10th Percentile Median Earnings 90th Percentile
San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX $33,450 $45,580 $60,940
Texas $34,850 $46,860 $61,720
United States $34,560 $47,480 $63,360
San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX $33,450 $45,580 $60,940
Austin-Round Rock, TX $34,970 $49,310 $62,160
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX $40,420 $49,170 $66,170
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX $33,980 $48,090 $62,240

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2019

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