Myron E. Rubnitz, M.D. School of Medical Laboratory Science
The Myron E. Rubnitz, M.D. School of Medical Laboratory Science Program at Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital is designed to help prepare students for Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) certification upon completion of the program.
The Myron E. Rubnitz, M.D. School of Medical Laboratory Science Program at VA Hines Hospital is designed to help prepare students for Medical Laboratory Scientist (MLS) certification upon completion of the program.
Established in 1974, the Medical Laboratory Science Program, consists of 11 months of clinical education beginning the first week of August. All sciences courses at Hines have a didactic and a practical component; this enables the student to learn the theory of procedures, gain experience in performing those procedures and make clinical correlations from the laboratory data generated.
The Program is accredited by the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS), 5600 N. River Road, Suite 720, Rosemont, IL 60018, 773-714-8880.
The Program is affiliated with the following academic institutions: Benedictine University, Bradley University, Eastern Illinois University, Elmhurst University, Purdue University, St. Mary’s University of Minnesota, University of St. Francis, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point, Western Illinois University and Winona State University.
Students currently enrolled in the Medical Technology (Medical/Clinical Laboratory Science) curriculum at one of these schools are eligible to complete their senior year at Hines, but placement is not guaranteed. Applicants who already have a baccalaureate degree will also be considered, provided they meet the admission requirements.
All Program policies and procedures, including those related to progression through the program, disciplinary action, conduct, contingency plans, non-discrimination practices, record retention, etc. are available from the Program Director upon request.
VA educational programs admit students in accordance with national non-discrimination policies.
- Program graduates have achieved a 100% pass rate on the ASCP Board of Certification exam over the past 3 years (2020 through 2022).
- 88% of students who started the Program over the past 3 years successfully completed it (2020 through 2022); all have been successful in finding jobs at competitive salaries within 3 months of graduation.
Mission and Goals
- The mission of the VA Hines Medical Laboratory Science Program is determined by a threefold responsibility - that to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the student, and the Nation.
- By providing an academic environment which stimulates and challenges the regular staff to strive for continuously improved performance, and by creating an ongoing source of recruitment, the quality of medical care to veteran patients is maintained and improved.
- By providing in-depth curricula and clinical experiences, the student is equipped with the knowledge and discipline demanded by their chosen profession. Through examples of compassion, leadership, professionalism and integrity, the student understands the service and dedication required as a Medical Technologist and grows in the maturity necessary to accept these challenges. Through a constantly evolving process of revision of the curriculum, current principles and procedures in the Medical Laboratory Science profession are presented to the student.
- Through its unified educational endeavors, the VA Hines Medical Laboratory Science Program contributes significantly to the national pool of qualified personnel, thus helping to meet the healthcare needs of this Nation.
- It is the firm belief of this Program that the responsibility of laboratory professionals is so profound that the qualities of honesty and integrity are absolute requirements in its members. These qualities are sought and fostered in its students through moral leadership and dedication to service.
- This Program is totally committed to student success. Competition is discouraged once student selection is made, and every effort is made to assist students in learning the material and acquiring the necessary skills to function as competent Medical Laboratory Scientists.
- Educate Medical Laboratory Science students in the art and science of laboratory medicine, thus preparing them to be able to understand, perform and interpret various analyses utilized in the healthcare profession.
- Promote the highest ideal of the medical profession by instilling into the students those virtues of integrity, morality, and honesty.
- Encourage continuing education throughout the Laboratory by promoting a milieu of study and learning in which there is participation by many laboratory personnel.
- Serve as the major recruiting device in seeking the best possible additions and / or replacements of Medical Laboratory Scientists for employment in the VISN 12 PLMS Product Line.
A student must have completed at least 90 semester hours (or equivalent) accepted by our affiliated universities and must be approved for application by that university. Alternatively, the student may have a baccalaureate degree and thus be eligible for application within seven years. If more than seven years have elapsed, academic preparation must be updated. Prerequisite courses include chemistry (l6 semester hours including organic or biochemistry); biology (l6 semester hours including microbiology and immunology); mathematics (l semester of college level math); physics and statistics are recommended.
All science courses at Hines have a didactic and a practical component; this enables the student to learn the theory of procedures, gain experience in performing those procedures, and make clinical correlations from the laboratory data which is generated. The student will learn a wide variety of procedures and will be expected to become proficient in the performance and understanding of all commonly performed laboratory procedures.
- Clinical Chemistry I (5 hours)
Theory and practice of analytical biochemistry as applied to pathologic states, methodology and instrumentation. Statistics are applied to reagent preparation, result determination and quality control. Includes clinical significance.
- Clinical Chemistry II (3 hours)
Theory & practice of analytical biochemistry as applied to specialized tests for drugs, endocrine function, and blood gas analysis. The relation of clinical testing, including Molecular Biology techniques, to disease states is also included.
- Clinical Hematology (5 hours)
Study of the origin, development, morphology, physiology, & pathophysiology of the formed elements of the blood and bone marrow. Manual & automated methods of cell counting, differentiation & other special hematological procedures on blood & body fluids used in disease diagnosis.
- Clinical Hemostasis (2 hour)
Study of the platelet, vascular, coagulation, & fibrinolytic systems. Testing procedures & the application of the principles of hemostasis as related to disease states & therapeutic monitoring are also included.
- Clinical Immunohematology (4 hours)
Study of red cell antigen-antibody systems, antibody screening & identification, compatibility testing & immunopathologic conditions. Also included are donor requirements & blood component preparation & hemotherapy.
- Clinical Immunology (3 hours)
Study of the principles of the protective & adversive aspects of the cellular & humoral immune responses, theory & performance of test procedures based on antigen-antibody reactions & clinical significance of test results are included.
- Clinical Microbiology I (6 hours)
Theory and practice of the isolation and identification of pathogenic bacteria and mycobacteria in clinical specimens through cultures, morphology, biochemical and/or serological reactions and their drug susceptibility. The relation of clinical testing to disease states is also included.
- Clinical Microbiology II (1 hour)
Theory and practice of the isolation and identification of fungi, parasites and viruses utilizing morphological, cultural, biochemical and serological methods. The relation of clinical testing to disease states and epidemiology as it applies to microbiology is also included.
- Clinical Microscopy (1-2 hours)
Theory and practice of biochemical analyses and microscopic examination of urine and other body fluids. Includes clinical significance of lab data.
- Special Topics in Clinical Laboratory Science (l hour)
An overview of medical ethics, patient approach, the theory and practice of phlebotomy techniques, laboratory safety, applications of laboratory computer systems and independent clinical research and development. Management and Education may also be included in this course for some affiliate partners.
- Clinical Management and Education (l hour)
An introduction to the principles and theory of management and education as related to the clinical laboratory. The special job responsibilities of the medical laboratory scientist in management and education are addressed.
***Course titles and hours may vary at affiliated colleges and universities.
How to Apply
Our 2024 application process is now closed.
We accept applications from September 1 through December 1. Please check back for an application during that timeframe.
The Myron E. Rubnitz, M.D. Medical Laboratory Science Program at the VA Hines Hospital, Hines, Illinois reserves the right to change conditions, provisions & requirements upon reasonable notice as may be necessary to maintain proper standards and objectives of the Program. Each student must exhibit professional conduct, satisfactory progress in academic standing and practical achievement. The Program reserves the right to require, at any time, the removal of any student whose attitude, conduct, health, scholastic records or practical experience is not in harmony with the policies of the hospital or its best interests.
All completed application documents must be received by December 1 for admission consideration into the 11-month program which commences the following August. Materials received after December 1st will not be accepted.
Any applicant who has attended an educational institution outside of the U.S. is required to submit a transcript evaluation verifying U.S. equivalency. Contact the ASCP Board of Certification (www.ascp.org) for information.
Our evaluation and ranking of prospective students will be made by the Admissions Committee, comprised of Program officials and faculty, on the basis of a personal interview (required), academic standing, academic background (considering coursework taken, withdrawals and repeats), previous experience, letters of reference and personal narrative. Minimum GPA requirement is 2.75 on a 4.0 scale overall and in the sciences. Students will be notified of acceptance status in January.
Preference points will be given to veterans and to those students from affiliated colleges or universities. Non-citizens will be considered for enrollment only in the absence of qualified American citizens. VA educational programs admit students in accordance with national non-discrimination policies. (USAJOBS Help Center | Equal employment opportunity policy)
- Print out and complete the Application Form. Please attach a list and brief description of any courses you plan to take which do not appear on your official transcript.
- Official transcripts from EACH of the colleges or universities you’ve attended, including junior or community colleges, must be sent directly to the Program at the address listed below. NOTE: Applicants who have attended an academic institution outside of the United States must have their foreign transcript evaluated by an outside evaluating agency. Contact the ASCP Board of Certification for a list of acceptable evaluation agencies.
- Print out the recommendation form that is included as the last page of the application. Make copies and distribute them to your references. Completed recommendations must be sent directly to the Program by your references or may be enclosed with your application IF they are in sealed envelopes.
- Return completed forms, including transcripts, to:
Carrie Carlson, MS, MLS(ASCP)CM
Medical Laboratory Science Program
VA Hines Hospital
5000 South 5th Avenue
Pathology & Lab Medicine (113-School)
Hines, IL 60141-3030
Please refer to brochure for more information.
For questions, contact Carrie Carlson at Carrie.Carlson@va.gov or 708-202-8387 ext. 21349.
- Sydney Alonzo, MLS(ASCP)cm
- Beth Marcum, MLS(ASCP)cm
Hematology and Clinical Microscopy
- Sue In, MT(ASCP)
- Monika Pociute, MLS(ASCP)cmSHcm
- Jessica Kendall, MLS(ASCP)cm
- Frank Landowski, MLS(ASCP)cm
- Danielle O’Donnell, MLS(ASCP)cm
- Brandi Teggelaar, MLS(ASCP)cm
- Lisa Houha-Olsen, MT(ASCP)
- Carrie Carlson, MS, MLS(ASCP)cm
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the cost of the Program?
- The Program does not charge tuition; however, students may be responsible for payment of tuition to their affiliating colleges and universities.
How long is the Program?
- 11 months and runs from August until June.
How many applicants do you accept?
- Our Program usually accepts between 4-8.
What will my schedule be?
- MLS Program students are expected to be on site Monday – Friday from 8:00am until 4:00pm.