Classes & Programs > Instructional Dept Web Pages > Nursing Program > Nursing: An Overview & Contact Info

Mendocino College Nursing logo


What is a Registered Nurse and What Do They Do?
Registered Nurses (RNs) have a variety of roles in health promotion, disease prevention, and treatment of illness or injury. Primarily, RNs are patient advocates and consistently apply educational techniques in their care of others. RNs may target their education toward an individual, family, a specific group, or an entire community. RNs are directly responsible for patient observation and assessment and often lead a health care team. RNs may be assisting physicians during procedures, may complete procedures ordered by a physician, may administer medications, and must integrate a variety of patient information into the formulation of a nursing care plan. The job of RN involves multi-tasking and critical thinking.

The job opportunities for RNs are varied. RNs can work in a hospital, a clinic, in an extended care facility, as a case manager, in management positions, as a traveling nurse, as a school nurse, as a home health nurse, or as a hospice nurse. Areas of specialization in which nurses can focus include cardiac nursing, obstetrical nursing, emergency nursing, pediatric nursing, trauma nursing, cancer nursing, AIDS care, diabetes care, medical nursing, surgical nurse, wound care, geriatric nursing, and flight nursing. RNs can continue their education and obtain advanced degrees that give them even more career options such as Nurse Practitioner or Nurse Educator. The job market at this point makes nursing a career with lots of opportunities and choices.

Class of 07-09







Types of Nursing Programs Available in California

  • RN Program - this type of program usually consists of a two-year sequence of nursing coursework that can be completed after general education and prerequisite coursework. No prior nursing experience is usually needed for this type of program, but some programs require having a nursing assistant background for admission. Degrees for this type of program include: ADN (Associate Degree in Nursing) which can be obtained at the community college level; BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing), and MSN (Masters Degree in Nursing), both of which require admission to a four-year college or university. The ADN program can be taken at the community college level and then the student can continue on for their BSN while working as an RN. For a list of RN programs in California go to


  • LVN-to-RN Program - this type of program is usually called a "bridge"  or "career ladder" program. This program is for those already licensed in California as LVNs that want to continue their education in order to become RNs. These students are often given advanced placement when entering an RN program, and may be admitted either in the first or second year of courses. Often, these programs are on a space-available basis in a RN program. For a list of LVN-to-RN programs in California go to


  • LVN Program - this type of program is for training as a Licensed Vocational Nurse (also called LPN in other states). An LVN is a valuable member of the healthcare team that takes direction from an RN or physician. The length of training is approximately 18 months and does not always require a college degree. For information on Vocational Nursing go to: . For those in the Ukiah area, information on the local LVN training program can be obtained by calling the Ukiah Adult School (707) 463-5217. Mendocino College does not offer an LVN training program at this time.


Type of Nursing Program Available at Mendocino College
Mendocino College currently offers the following two nursing options:


Interested in Nursing?

  • Prior to applying to any nursing program, interested students should meet with an academic counselor for guidance and complete prerequisite coursework.
  • All general education (GE) coursework and nursing prerequisites must be completed by the end of the semester in which you submit an application. 
  • An application to the nursing program is required, and only complete applications are reviewed.
  • Applications are only accepted during specific application periods except for advanced standing applications which can be accepted at any time.

The Nursing Application Handbook is available on-line during open application periods. You may not enroll in nursing courses unless you have been formally admitted to the nursing program. There is a specific application period for each nursing program. For information on advanced standing applications visit the Mendocino College 'Applications and Other Information' web page.

If you have questions you can call Nursing Department Support Specialist, Ginger Bushway (707-468-3099) for further information, or email



Contact Information

Mendocino College
Nursing Program, Room 6650
1000 Hensley Creek Road
Ukiah, CA 95482
Tel: 707-468-3099

Dr. Barbara French, Ph.D., RN
RN Program Director, Instructor
V: 707-467-1055

Fran Laughton and Ginger Bushway




(l)Fran Laughton, RN, MSN; Assistant RN Program Director, Nursing Instructor: 707-468-3109

(r)Ginger Bushway Program Support Specialist and Part-time Instructor: 707-468-3099 F: 707-467-6047




Karen Wilson








 Karen Wilson, RN, MSN; Nursing Instructor: 707-468-3017 F: 707-467-6047





Nora Danning, RN, BSN; Nursing Instructor: 707-4687-1025 F: 707-467-6047  Email:










Created: March 11, 2005 @ 12:00 AM
Last Modified: April 30, 2014 @ 11:16 AM


  Copyright © 2001 - 2010     Mendocino College is not responsible for third party content.