Victor Valley College - "Building a Future"
VVC - Allied Health

Dr. Prem Reddy School of Health SciencesRespiratory Therapy
Respiratory Care . . . A Profession With A Future!

The Respiratory Therapy program here at Victor Valley College prepares students for a career in health care as an integral part of the health care team. Whether you are new in the work force or changing careers, respiratory therapy provides the opportunity for life-long learning and financial security.

Respiratory therapists care for a wide variety of patients of all ages that experience an array of cardiopulmonary disorders. Patient assessment, care plans, diagnostic testing, and pulmonary treatments are a few of the primary responsibilities of a respiratory therapist in the clinical setting. For example, when a patient enters the emergency room with a history of chronic lung disease, such as chronic bronchitis or emphysema, the respiratory therapist may be responsible for assessing the underlying cause of a particular set of signs and symptoms that that patient presents with by performing basic patient assessment, bedside pulmonary function testing and/or arterial blood gas sampling. From the assessment and diagnostic data, the respiratory therapist may follow a "therapist-driven" protocol in attempt to improve that patient's ability to breathe comfortably. Likewise, in the event of a high-risk delivery, where a premature newborn may be at risk for breathing complications, respiratory therapist are responsible for assessing the newborn, assisting with ventilation if needed, working in conjunction with the neonatologist to devise a care plan, and implementing that care plan. These are just two examples of the important role respiratory therapists' play in prevention, maintenance, and improvement toward quality of life in patients that experience cardiopulmonary complications.

Most respiratory therapists are employed in the hospital setting, working 12 hours shifts, usually 3-4 days a week. Increasingly, there are career opportunities in nursing homes, in private homes, with medical equipment supply companies, in home health agencies, and in physicians' offices. Annual earnings of respiratory therapists range from approximately $40,000 to $54,000.


Traci Marin, Program Director/Instructor
Sandee Cegielski, Clinical Director


  • Respiratory Care Practitioner
  • Critical Care Specialist
  • Diagnostic Testing Specialist
  • Education
  • Home Care
  • Neonatal/Pediatric Specialist
  • Pulmonary Rehabilitation
  • Research
  • Manufacturing
  • Physician Offices and Clinics

Job opportunities are great and continue to grow due to the significant growth in numbers of the elderly population. The elderly are most susceptible and suffer from respiratory and cardiopulmonary disorders such as pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, and coronary heart disease. During the past decade there have been major advances in the treatment of myocardial infarction (heart attacks) and heart failure, trauma and burn care, and treatment of premature infants. These advances have increased the demand for competent, critical-thinking respiratory therapist.

The Victor Valley College Respiratory Therapy Program provides hospital skills and supervised clinical practices in Inland Empire hospitals. Graduates of the VVC, as a result of the education and training they receive, pass the state licensing and national registry exams at a rate much greater than the national average. The Respiratory Therapy Program is fully accredited by the American Medical Association.


In order to be admitted to the Respiratory Therapy program, separate application must be made in addition to application to the college. Applications are available January through March 15. Applications can be obtained online shortly before the application period or in the Health Sciences office during the application period. . See ADMISSION INFORMATION for APPLICATION PROCEDURE.


  • $4,500 (2-year Respiratory Therapy Program)
  • $4,000 (Preparation courses.)
  • $8,500 Total



This certificate prepares the student to take the state examination to practice as an entry-level practitioner.

Requirements: 78 units minimum

Group A: All of the following must be completed:
RSPT 230 Introduction to Respiratory Therapy
RSPT 231 Orientation to and basic Function of Respiratory Therapy
RSPT 232 Patient Assessment and Clinical Application of Respiratory Care
RSPT 233 Intensive Respiratory Care and Advanced Pulmonary Physiology
RSPT 234 Neonatal and Pediatric Respiratory Care and Pathophysiology and Pulmonary Rehabilitation
RSPT 239 Introduction to Mechanical Ventilation
BIOL 211 Human Anatomy OR
BIOL 212 Human Anatomy
BIOL 221 General Microbiology
BIOL 231 Human Physiology OR
BIOL 232 Human Physiology
ENGL 101 English Composition and Reading
PSYCH 101 General Psychology

Group B: One of the following must be completed:
SPEECH 6 Human Communication
SPEECH 7 Family Communication
SPEECH 8 Group Discussion
SPEECH 9 Public Speaking

Group C: One of the following must be completed:
One course that meets the VVC Logic\Mathematical general education requirements.

Group D: One of the following must be completed:
One course that meets the VVC Humanities general education requirements.

Group E: One of the following must be completed:
One Physical Education Course.

Any course which meets the general education transfer requirements to the CSU or UC system may be used as a general education requirement for the associate degree in Groups III and IV.

The Respiratory Therapy Faculty accepts and operates within the framework of the philosophy and objectives of Victor Valley College.

The Associate Degree in Respiratory Therapy provides a foundation for continuing personal, professional and educational development, and includes the study of the arts, sciences and humanities. The program is designed to produce a competent, self-directed respiratory therapist who, in a variety of settings, can assume leadership in planning, providing, and evaluating respiratory care of individuals and groups; who participates in the determination of the goals of the profession; and who actively searches for knowledge in respiratory therapy and related fields essential to the development and application of scientific respiratory care.

The respiratory therapy graduate receives the Associate of Science Degree and is eligible to take the National Registry Exam for Respiratory Therapist and the entry-level exam.

Associate Degree

To earn an Associate in Science degree with a major in Respiratory Therapy, complete all requirements for the Respiratory Therapy Certificate. The Respiratory Therapy Certificate above includes all requirements for both a certificate and an Associate in Science degree in Respiratory Therapy.


Most Respiratory Therapy courses do not transfer. Two universities offer a bachelor's degree in Respiratory Therapy:

• California College for Health Sciences, National City
• Loma Linda University.

Students in this field may choose to pursue a bachelor's degree in Emergency Medical Care, Respiratory Therapy, or related majors from Loma Linda University or other universities. A handout with all transfer requirements for a B.S. degree in Emergency Medical Care, Respiratory Therapy, or other related medical degrees from Loma Linda University is available in the Counseling Department.


In an effort to comply with the recommendations of the Joint commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations, the majority of the major healthcare facilities and agencies utilized by the College for clinical training require that each student undergo and pass a student background check prior to participating in clinical rotations. Each student, at his/her expense, is responsible for acquiring the student background check report and authorizing the submission of results to the college.

No student will be permitted to participate in a clinical rotation until the results have been received, reviewed, and accepted by the designated program director. Failure to submit to and pass the required student background check will result in the student being terminated from the respective program.

Students accepted into certain programs, will be required to have a physical examination, a chest X-ray and/or PPD, lab tests, required immunizations, and a criminal background check. These are required in order to comply with the program and clinical agencies’ contractual requirements. Also, the following items are commonly required: a current American Heart Association CPR Certificate and liability insurance (certain limits apply). Most Health Sciences programs have a group policy available, or the students may purchase their own policy. All of the above will be completed at the student’s expense. In most cases these items will be completed, with copies submitted, before the first day of the semester. Not submitting the required documentation may preclude the student’s ability to continue in the program.

Details regarding these requirements may be obtained from the respective program.

It is always recommended that students considering a career or transfer for an advanced degree in health careers meet with Diane Wollan, VVC Counselor. Contact the Counseling Department for an appointment. Walk—in appointments are also available during certain times of the semester. They can be reached at (760) 245-4271, Extension 2296

The Victor Valley College Respiratory Therapy Program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs ( ) upon the recommendation of the Committee on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).

Traci Marin, MPH, RRT
Program Director, Respiratory Therapy Program
Phone: 760-245-4271, Ext. 2509
Fax: 760 951-5861

General Information
Health Sciences/Allied Health Office Assistant 760-245-4271, Ext. 2463

Last Modified: 2008-06-26 .

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