Respiratory Therapy


The Respiratory Therapy degree curriculum prepares individuals to function as respiratory therapists. In these roles, individuals perform diagnostic testing, treatments, and management of patients with heart and lung diseases. Students will master skills in patient assessment and treatment of cardiopulmonary diseases. These skills include life support, monitoring, drug administration, and treatment of patients of all ages in a variety of settings.

Graduates of accredited programs may be eligible to take entry-level examinations from the National Board of Respiratory Care. Therapy graduates may also take the Advanced Practitioner examination. Graduates may be employed in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, education, industry, and home care.


Unique Aspects

The Respiratory Therapy clinical aspect has been the cornerstone of the program for over 30 years. Students learn to master the skills necessary for patient assessment and treatment of cardiopulmonary diseases. These skills include life support, monitoring, drug administration, and the treatment of patients of all ages in a variety of settings; therefore, students travel to various local and regional hospitals where they gain the necessary expertise in adult, neonatal and pediatric intensive care as well as emergency care.

In addition to gaining required skills, our clinical rotations expose students to clinical experiences and potential employers while completing the program. Local area hospitals such as Central Carolina Hospital and Scotland Memorial Hospital provide students with training of the fundamental respiratory skills. Students gain intensive care and specialty care training at First Health of the Carolinas in Pinehurst and Rockingham, Harnett Health in Dunn and Lillington, Cape Fear Medical Center in Fayetteville, Kindred and Moses Cone Hospitals in Greensboro, and the University of North Carolina Hospital System in Chapel Hill. All travel during the clinical portion of the curriculum is the responsibility of the student. Travel costs are not included in the tuition or fees, so student should make financial arrangements prior to entering their clinical courses. Clinical rotation sites and cost are subject to change.

Graduates of accredited programs, such as ours, may be eligible to take entry-level examinations from the National Board of Respiratory Care. The entry-level exam is required by graduates to obtain their Respiratory Care Practitioner (RCP) license from the North Carolina Respiratory Care Board.

Graduates are also eligible for the Advanced Practitioner examination for a maximum of three years after passing the entry-level examination.



In addition to tuition and books, students are responsible for extra costs for uniforms, supplies, medical exam, insurance, and travel to clinical sites.


Admissions Process

  • College Application: Complete an SCC admissions application online. Set up your SCC student email account.  New students or returning students who have not attended SCC for two years will be required to attend a College orientation before registering for classes.
  • Transcripts: Submit official (sealed) high school/high school equivalency and all college transcripts to the admissions office.
  • Prerequisite Classes: Anatomy & Physiology (or BIO 094) AND Chemistry is required with a grade of C or better verified by college or high school transcript.
  • Course Placement Requirements: Students must place into ENG 111 without a corequisite and out of Math Modules DMA 010-DMA 050 or Transition Math Tiers 1 and 2.
  • All applicants must have at least a 2.0 GPA to be considered for admission.
  • HESI A2 (Admission Assessment Exam): A 75+ cumulative score is required to apply in Early Consideration. Students who do not achieve a 75 may apply in Late Consideration. Students may only take the HESI A2 twice in an academic year (September-May). HESI A2 scores for tests taken within the last three years will be reviewed. Tests must be scheduled in advance; dates and registration are online. Test cost is $55, subject to change.
  • Health Sciences Application: Submit online by deadline listed below.
    Applications can be accessed from the Health Sciences website.

Application Deadlines

Early Consideration: Last Friday in January
Late Consideration: Last Friday in April


RCP Essential Functions

Before official enrollment in RCP Program courses, students must present a personal statement to verify that they can fulfill certain essential functions. These include, but are not limited to: Physical Ability, Visual Acuity, Hearing Acuity, Speech/Communication, Critical Thinking, Emotional Stability, Personal Attributes, and Ability to Travel.

A complete list of essential functions can be obtained from the Program Coordinator.


Criminal Background Checks and Drug Screens

  • Criminal background checks and drug screens are required for the Respiratory Therapy program. Results are viewed only by clinical affiliates.
  • Students may be prohibited from clinical education at specific clinical affiliates based on results, which could prevent students from progressing in the program.
  • Students with a criminal conviction may not be eligible for a state license, which is required for employment.


Accreditation and Outcomes

The Respiratory Therapy program at Sandhills is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (264 Precision Blvd, Telford, TN 37690, 817-283-2835)

Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care: Outcomes data from the Annual Report of Current Status

CoARC # 200229

CoARC accredits respiratory therapy education programs in the United States. To achieve this end, it utilizes an ‘outcomes based’ process. Programmatic outcomes are performance indicators that reflect the extent to which the educational goals of the program are achieved and by which program effectiveness is documented.


Estimated Program Expenses

Tuition* $5,624.00 $19,832.00
Student Activity Fee $175.00 $175.00
Technology Fee $240.00 $240.00
General Education Course fees $0-100.00 $0-100.00
Additional Program fees $120.00 $120.00
Malpractice Insurance $18.00 $18.00
Medical Record Tracking $20.00 $20.00
Textbooks $800.00 $800.00
Uniform $350.00 $350.00
Supplies $250.00 $250.00
Criminal Background Check & Drug Screening $108.00 $108.00

*Program credit hours: 74 – $76.00 per credit hour in-state tuition, $268.00 per credit hour out-of-state tuition.


Contact Information

General Health Sciences Admissions Questions

Leslie Williams, MS, RRT, RCP, Professor, RCP Program Coordinator
165 Kennedy Hall
(910) 695-3991

TyRonda Pettigrew, MSRT, RCP Clinical Coordinator
166 Kennedy Hall
(910) 695-3836

IRR Survey