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Clinical Requirements

Criminal Background Check

Felony and some misdemeanor convictions will prevent you from completing program requirements and taking licensure, certification, and registry examinations, thus affecting your employment options.

Federal and state laws require a criminal background check with fingerprint of those assigned to long-term care facilities, psychiatric agencies, nursing homes, and homes for the aged. When assigned to such a facility, you must permit GRCC to perform a criminal check and to release the findings to the facility. 

Should a student who has passed the fingerprinting/background check be involved in any illegal or criminal situation that may affect their previously submitted background check, that student must notify the Nursing Program Director immediately. Under such circumstances, a student may be required to stop out of the program until a resolution is reached. Please be aware that, for legal reasons, some incidents may prohibit the student from completing the clinical requirements of the Nursing Program or prevent them from sitting for the State Board Licensure Examination (NCLEX). 

Individuals who have been dismissed from the role of employee at any of our clinical facilities should notify the Program Director prior to applying.  Many of our clinical partners will not allow students who have been previously dismissed from employment at their facility and may result in a student not being able to complete the program. 

For additional information: Health Programs Background Check Information.

Basic Life Support (BLS)/Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Certification

Nursing students must have a current certification prior to beginning clinical nursing courses and throughout the duration of their enrollment in the nursing programs. Renewal requirements vary with different organizations. If certification is NOT current, the student will NOT be allowed to continue and will be dropped from the course(s) immediately.

Evidence of certification must be presented to each clinical instructor on the first day of each clinical course, every semester until graduation.

Following are the acceptable courses:

  • American Heart Association: BLS for Healthcare Providers
  • American Red Cross: CPR / AED for the Professional Rescuer, or BLS for Healthcare Providers

On-line courses are not acceptable unless they include a skills demonstration with a certified instructor.

Immunization Requirements

Nursing programs require students to have up to date vaccinations which must completed by the 1st day of the month prior to the nursing program rotation. Contact the Nursing Department if you have questions:, (616) 234-4238.

Immunization Requirements

Additional forms and information

Fingerprint Application

Essential Abilities/Technical Standards

The Grand Rapids Community College Nursing Department faculty has specified essential abilities and technical standards critical to the success of students in any GRCC Nursing Department program. Students must demonstrate these essential abilities to succeed in their program of study. Qualified applicants are expected to meet all admission criteria and matriculating students are expected to meet all progression criteria, as well as these essential abilities essential abilities and technical standards with or without reasonable accommodations.

1. Essential judgment skills to include: ability to identify, assess, comprehend, and interpret medical or health related issues/situations for the purpose of coming to appropriate conclusions and/or prioritizing a course of action(s) in the provision of Nursing Care. Critical Thinking - The student must possess sufficient abilities in the areas of calculation, critical problem solving, reasoning, and judgment to be able to comprehend and process information within a reasonable time frame as determined by the faculty and the profession. The student must be able to prioritize, organize and attend to tasks and responsibilities efficiently. This includes, but is not limited to: Ability to collect, interpret and analyze written, verbal and observed data about clients, families, and environments. Ability to prioritize multiple tasks, integrate information and make decisions. Ability to apply knowledge of the principles, indications, and contraindications for nursing interventions. Ability to act safely and ethically in the college clinical lab and in clinical placements within the community.

2. Essential physical/neurological functions to include: ability to use the senses of seeing, hearing, touch, and smell to make correct judgments regarding Nursing Care and meet physical expectations to perform required interventions for the purpose of demonstrating competence to safely engage in the practice of Nursing. Behaviors that demonstrate essential neurological and physical functions include, but are not limited to observation, listening, understanding relationships, writing, and psychomotor abilities consistent with course and program expectations. Motor - The student must possess sufficient motor capabilities to execute the movements and skills required to provide safe and effective nursing interventions. These include, but are not limited to: Coordination - speed and agility to assist and safely guard (protect), with safe and proper body mechanics, clients who are ambulating, transferring, or performing other activities. Strength and Flexibility - ability to adjust and position equipment and clients, which involves bending or stooping freely to floor level and reaching above the head. Lifting - ability to move or position clients and equipment, which involves lifting, carrying, pulling, pushing up to and including 30 pounds. Physical Mobility - ability to guide, resist, and assist clients, or to provide emergency care, which involves the activities of standing, kneeling, sitting, or walking. Manual Dexterity – fine motor skills, including the ability and dexterity to manipulate the devices and other small objects used in providing nursing care. Lung Capacity - ability to administer CPR without assistance. Sensory - The student must possess the ability to obtain information in classroom, laboratory or clinical settings through observation, auscultation, palpation and other measures, including but not limited to: Visual Ability - (corrected as necessary) to recognize and interpret facial expressions and body language, identify normal and abnormal patterns of movement, to read or set parameters on various equipment, to discriminate color changes, and to interpret and assess the environment. Auditory Ability - (corrected as necessary) to recognize and respond to soft voices, auditory timers, equipment alarms, call bells, and to effectively use devices for measurement of blood pressure, breath sounds, etc. Tactile Ability - to palpate a pulse and to detect changes or abnormalities of surface texture, skin temperature, body contour, muscle tone, and joint movement. Mobility - Sufficient position, movement and balance sensations to assist and safely guard (protect) clients who are ambulating, transferring or performing other activities.

3. Essential communication skills to include: ability to communicate effectively with fellow students, faculty, patients, clients and their families, other health care providers and staff, as well as all members of the Nursing Department. Skills include verbal, written, and nonverbal abilities as well as information technology skills consistent with effective communication. This includes, but is not limited to: Reading - ability to read at a competency level that allows one to safely carry out the essential functions of an assignment (examples: handwritten chart data, printed policy and procedure manuals). Interpretation - ability to effectively interpret and process information. Communication - ability to effectively communicate (verbally and in writing) with clients/families, health care professionals, and others within the community. Technology – ability to access information and collect data, as well as to communicate and document effectively via computer. Perception - Ability to recognize, interpret, and appropriately respond to nonverbal behavior of self and others.

4. Essential emotional coping skills: ability to manage potential stressors that accompany tasks necessary to safely engage in the practice of Nursing as determined by professional standards of practice. The student must be capable of exercising good judgment, developing empathic and therapeutic relationships with clients and others, and tolerating close and direct physical contact with a diverse population. This will include people of all ages, races, socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds, as well as individuals with weight disorders, physical disfigurement and medical or mental health problems. This also includes, but is not limited to: Ability to work with multiple clients/families and colleagues at the same time. Ability to work with classmates, instructors, health care providers, clients, families and others under stressful conditions, including but not limited to providing care to medically or emotionally unstable individuals, situations requiring rapid adaptations, the provision of CPR, or other emergency interventions. Ability to foster and maintain cooperative and collegial relationships with classmates, instructors, other health care providers, clients and their families.

5. Essential intellectual/conceptual skills to include: ability to measure, calculate, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate to engage competently in the safe practice of Nursing. These abilities include an aptitude for rapid problem solving, the capability to access and interpret medical files independently, conduct physical examinations and interpret findings, and to formulate a logical plan of care. Students must possess good judgment in patient assessment, and the abilities to incorporate new information, comprehend three-dimensional relationships, and retain and recall pertinent information in a timely fashion. The student must also be prepared to provide in-depth rationale for plan of care.

6. Other essential behavioral attributes: ability to engage in activities consistent with safe Nursing practice without demonstrated behaviors of addiction to, abuse of, or dependence on alcohol or other drugs that may impair behavior or judgment. The student must demonstrate responsibility and accountability for actions as a student in the Nursing Program and as a developing professional in the Field of Nursing consistent with accepted standards of practice. Grand Rapids Community College strives to be more than ADA compliant. We strive to be accessible and welcoming to all students of all abilities. After reviewing the Essential Abilities/Technical Standards for this program; your responsibilities as a student entail determining if you can complete all associated coursework either:

A. With Accommodation. I am otherwise qualified to meet the same academic standards as any other student entering the program. However, based on a medically documented condition or diagnosis, I would qualify for reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (1990). I will meet with Disability Support Services on campus to arrange those accommodations in an interactive process with the department of Nursing.

B. Without Accommodation. I am able to complete the program without need for reasonable accommodation or modification. In the event my medical documentation reveals otherwise or a condition manifests that would necessitate an accommodation; it is my responsibility to inform a responsible authority figure within the Department of Nursing and work with Disability Support Services to see if a reasonable accommodation or modification can be made. If you have a medically documented condition or diagnosis, please contact the Nursing Department office, or contact Disability Support Services (DSS) at or calling (616) 234-4140 to arrange accommodations through our interactive process.

Written Arrangements Disclosures for the Associate Degree of Nursing and Practical Nursing Programs

The Higher Education Act of 1965 (HEA), as amended by the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA), requires colleges participating in federal student aid programs to make certain disclosures. In compliance with these federal laws, Grand Rapids Community College is providing information for specific programs offered at GRCC, which incur additional costs of attendance due to a portion of the program being completed at an off-campus location.  In the Associate Degree of Nursing Program off-site instruction accounts for approximately 40% of the program and includes clinical instruction. The off-site locations are typically located within a 15 mile radius of the GRCC main Grand Rapids campus. Students are responsible for transportation to the off-site locations and any other costs associated with attending the off-campus location. Costs range from $1.00 to $18.00 per trip and may include mileage, parking, and other costs related to the off-site placement (e.g., uniform). 

The following list includes possible sites where a student could be assigned to complete their off-campus requirements for the program. The following information is accurate as of March 2024, but off-campus sites can vary throughout the year due to site availability and other factors.

Name of the Institution/EntityAddressMethod of instruction at off-campus location
Forest View

877 Forest Hills Ave. SE 

Grand Rapids, MI 49546 

Clinical Instruction 
Holland Home-Raybook, Trillim Woods, Breton, Fulton

2100 Raybrook SE 

Grand Rapids, MI 49549

Clinical Instruction 
Mary Free Bed

235 Wealthy St. 

Grand Rapids, MI 49503

Clinical Instruction
University of Michigan Health-West

5900 Byron Center Ave.

Wyoming, MI 59519 

Clinical Instruction
The Oaks at Belmont

6081 W River Dr. NE

Belmont, MI 49306

Clinical Instruction
The Oaks at Byron Center

2280 Byron View Dr. 

Byron Center, MI 49315

Clinical Instruction 
Pine Rest Christian Hospital 

300 68th St.

Grand Rapids, MI 49548 

Clinical Instruction 
Porter Hills 

3600 E. Fulton Ave. 

Grand Rapids, MI 49506 

Clinical Instruction 
Corewell Health

100 Michigan, NE 

Grand Rapids, MI 49503 

Clinical Instruction 
Trinity (Mercy Health-St. Mary's)200 Jefferson SE Grand Rapids, MI 49503Clinical Instruction