Top 30 Cutting Edge Nursing Schools

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Nursing is among the fastest-growing fields, and it has a robust job market, which makes it very attractive to people in search of a new or first career. In the U.S., there is an abundance of exceptional nursing programs available, both online and traditional. Some programs, however, manage to distinguish themselves from the pack, and with that in mind, we have compiled a list of the top 30 leading-edge nursing schools in the United States. In order to make this list, a school has to display at least one of the following criteria:

  • amazing architecture
  • cutting edge technology / infrastructure
  • world class facilities
  • world class faculty
  • world class opportunities for experience
  • recognition by other publications (such as US News & World Report)


Top 30 Leading Edge Nursing Programs:


1. Columbia University — New York, NY

Columbia University

Butler Library

Columbia University is located in New York City, New York. It is a private, Ivy League university found in the Morningside Heights area of Manhattan, and is the oldest learning institution in the state. Columbia is also the fifth oldest university in the United States, and one of only nine colleges founded before the American Revolution, which gives it the title of of a Colonial College. The university also has locations in Amman, Beijing, Istanbul, Paris, Mumbai, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago, and Nairobi, through it’s Global Centers program.

Founded in 1754 under the name of King’s College, Columbia owes its existence to King George II of then-Great Britain. Columbia is also the university that presents the Pulitzer Prize each year.

Columbia University has a faculty to student ratio of 6 to 1, and as low as 2 to 1 in certain departments. The school is a four year private university accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Many students that attend Columbia do so for its nursing program. Columbia is one of the top nursing schools in the country, but due to the economic conditions, finding work has been hard for many graduates. Even so, nursing is one of the fastest growing professions within the United States, with an unemployment rate of only 2% and a median salary of nearly $66,000 each year. The healthcare field is one which will always be open. Though it is tough for a new graduate to enter into the field, holding a nursing degree from Columbia University will make it easier.

Columbia University doesn’t just claim to be one of the best nursing schools, either. It is the number one nursing school in the state of New York, and also ranked number one in the nation in the criteria of how selective it is, what degree is awarded. Columbia University is a very tough school to get into, receiving thousands of applicants each year.

The university stands apart from many schools due in part to its fantastic pre-Revolutionary War architecture. Built before the war and moved several times, Columbia University has locations all over New York City, some of which are hundreds of years old. Originally residing in Trinity Church, then Park Place, Columbia University moved to its current location in Morningside Heights in 1897. On the campus is the Cathedral of St. John, Grant’s Tomb, Union Theological School, and more – all works of exceedingly beautiful architecture that just adds to the serene beauty of the campus.

Columbia University boasts cutting edge technology that helps with their groundbreaking research into all different fields. Currently, Columbia is conducting research into memory, cancer treatments, and even economic theory. It is one of the leading research universities in the world, well known for its previous findings and discoveries.

The university also has a staff of world class professors and doctors leading the school into its future. Lee Bollinger is the current president of the university, in addition to being a nationally renowned supporter of the First Amendment. He is the 19th president of the college. Other faculty members include published authors, famous researchers, and more.

There are many reasons why a student should choose Columbia over other universities, the least of which is its location. Situated in the heart of New York City, there are endless opportunities for adventure everywhere, and not just academic adventures. New York is the city that never sleeps, and there is always something happening just around the corner. That alone draws many people to the city, and as a result, to the university.

Another reason is the “Core Curriculum” of Columbia University. These are a set of courses required for all undergraduates at the university, and considered necessary enough knowledge that everyone is required to take them. Unlike other core curriculum at other universities, though, Columbia’s core is unique. All students taking it take the same classes and go over the same material simultaneously, and this experience brings the entirety of the undergraduate class closer together. It is an experiment in liberal higher education, this curriculum focus largely on oral debate and questions the big things in life – what does it mean to be human, where did humans come from, etc. This style of learning began early in the 20th century, and has seen much success in that time.

Columbia University also has the opportunity for exciting internships for all fields, so students will be able to gain work experience while they are still learning. The internships teach them a deeper level of their field, letting the students get hands-on with the material and to see their knowledge in action before they take their first steps into proper employment. This particularly applies to the nursing programs at Columbia University, which helps to combat the problem of having no experience when exiting college. This makes students who graduate in the nursing program even more appealing to potential employers.

Columbia University has a lot to offer any prospective student, and is truly a wonderful school. With the opportunities presented to the students, in addition to its architecture, the world class staff and facilities, and the sheer number of programs of study, Columbia University is the perfect choice for any student.

2. University of Pennsylvania — Philadelphia, PA

University of Pennsylvania

Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine

Located in idyllic Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the University of Pennsylvania’s nursing school is among the nation’s best. The University of Pennsylvania was the first Ivy League school to offer baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral degrees in nursing. The school’s longstanding legacy of combining an interdisciplinary approach to nursing with a rigorous liberal arts education extends into the present, where the school is annually recognized as one of the nation’s best places to earn a nursing degree.

Starting as early as 1886, the University of Pennsylvania was training nurses on its campus. It was not until 1935, though, that the school started offering nursing degrees. In 1950, the School of Nursing was officially formed, after the Basic School and Department of Nursing Education consolidated.

As of 2012, there were only 554 students enrolled in the school’s nursing program, as the school believes the best way to learn is to keep the student to teacher ratio low. Like the rest of the University, Pennsylvania’s nursing program is private. The program offers 4-year bachelor’s degrees (for undergraduates and transfers), an accelerated two year nursing program designed for those who are interested in becoming a nurse, but already hold a bachelor’s degree in something other than nursing (the school’s associate program). Penn also offers a master’s program and doctoral program for nurses enrolled in their program. All of the University of Pennsylvania’s nursing degrees are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). The school’s bachelor and masters programs are also accredited by Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Annual tuition and fees for the school’s undergraduate program are $45,890, and the estimated cost of the school’s accelerated associates program is $106,624. Annual tuition costs for those enrolled in the school’s master’s program is $35,720, and those pursuing their doctoral degrees in nursing can expect to pay about $32,460 for tuition and attendant fees.

So, you are a recently-graduated student who has spent hundreds of thousand dollars earning a bachelor’s nursing degree from arguably the best nursing-focused program in the nation. You are thinking to yourself: “I’ve got a huge student loan debt to pay off. Can I get a job?” Registered nurses looking for employment in Pennsylvania should have no difficulty finding a job because there are currently shortages in nearly all specialty branches of nursing in the state. A quick Internet search demonstrates this nicely, as job boards and job networking websites have many listings posted for clinical positions and home care nursing jobs available, in every city from Philadelphia to Lancaster. In Philadelphia, nurses have a median annual income of $68,642, $64,501 in Pittsburgh, and, in Allentown, the median nurse pulls in $62,450 each year.

Although the University of Pennsylvania does not offer an online-only nursing school, Penn’s traditional nursing school is among the nation’s finest nursing programs. This is because the university offers flexible degree opportunities, so that a prospective nurse can also get a major or minor in classical literature, finance, or any of the other degrees offered at this Ivy League institution. The breadth of Pennsylvania’s master’s program is one-of-a-kind, because the school offers 18 degree opportunities in all, in everything from adult gerontology acute care, to pediatric primary care, to women’s health care.

The faculty and staff at the Pennsylvania School of Nursing is internationally renowned in their fields, and are just one of the many reasons the program is ranked as one of the nation’s top nursing programs, according to the U.S. News & World Report. When they are not instructing in the classroom or advising students in a clinical setting, Penn’s nursing professors are regularly invited to give keystone addresses both internationally and at home, edit authoritative academic journals in their respected fields, and serve on federal policy making committees.

Each Pennsylvania nursing student has access to simulations featuring high-tech health care equipment that is carried out in a safe, controlled environment. The crown jewel of the University’s nursing program, and one of the many reasons you should consider enrolling in Penn’s School of Nursing, is The Helene Fuld Pavilion for Innovative Learning and Simulation, a 7,000 square foot space dedicated to creating a deeper style of learning through those high fidelity simulations.. Studies have demonstrated that the Pavilion’s simulations, many of which mimic the real-life adverse environments in which nursing takes place, help to eliminate nursing errors. Not only is the curriculum offered in the Helene Fuld Pavilion cost-effective, it is also innovative. Currently, professors and students are working together on creating 3D modeling software so that, in future, nurses can more effectively address the individual aspects of each tumor or injury. At the Pavilion, games and applications are being developed so that health care information can be taken out of classroom and hospital contexts and brought into the real world, benefiting those who might not have access to the information they need to live healthier, better lives.

Other reasons to choose the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Nursing include the Laboratory of Innovative and Translational Nursing Research, one of the few places in the United States where nursing students can research how behavioral and biological factors impact nutrition, genetics, biochemistry, metabolism, and more. More precisely, this lab combines the nursing discipline with pharmacy, the environmental sciences, physiology, and the nutritional sciences to create a cutting-edge curriculum taught in a collaborative environment where finding the best treatment options for patients is the primary goal. If that did not make the Pennsylvania School of Nursing seem like one of the top nursing schools in the country, perhaps knowing that there seven school-supported research centers as well as one grant-supported research center available to students enrolled in the nursing program will tip the scales in its favor. These research centers are dedicated to pursuing a wide variety of interests, such as: bio-behavioral research, nursing history, health outcomes and public policy, aging, and health equity. Enrolling as a student in the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Nursing, then, is not just about earning a degree. As a nursing student at Penn, you will be playing an active role in creating the solution.

3. Duke University — Durham, NC

Duke University

Duke University Medical Center

Duke University School of Nursing is a part of Duke University Medical Center and the world renowned Duke University. Duke University is located in Durham in central North Carolina. It is about a two-hour drive from Charlotte, the state’s largest city. Raleigh, the state capital and The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is only a half hour away and the area is referred to as The Research Triangle.

The private research university was first founded by a group of Methodists and Quakers in 1838 in the town of Trinity, NC. It was known as Trinity College. The school relocated to Durham in 1892. In 1924, James B. Duke, a tobacco and electric power industrialist established The Duke Endowment and the school was renamed Duke University to honor his father, Washington Duke. It is an independent, nonsectarian institution, however, it still has ties to the United Methodist Church as 24 of it’s 36 Trustees are elected at the UMC Conference.

The Duke University School of Nursing began on January 2, 1931 with 24 students. It operated under the direction of Bessie Baker and Ann Henshaw Gardiner. Ms. Baker served as dean and Ms. Baker was the instructor. Through the years, the school has offered several different degrees. The very first students earned a three-year degree for the price of $100 a year. Baccalaureate degrees were offered beginning in 1938 to students who had completed a two-year program that taught a nursing degree program. Then in 1944, the school started a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Education degree program. In 1953, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program began. The school was one of the nation’s first to offer a graduate degree in nursing in 1958 under the leadership of Thelma Ingles.

Both the BSN and graduate programs closed briefly in the early 1980s. The graduate program reopened a year later with a new curriculum and an emphasis on research. Because of a nursing shortage at the beginning of the 21st century, the BSN degree program began again in 2002, this time, as an accelerated 16-month program to any student with any undergraduate degree. In 2006, a phD program was launched and two years later the state’s first Doctorate of Nursing Degree program opened to prepare nurses for leadership in clinical care.

Today, Duke’s school of nursing is one of the nation’s top nursing schools offering several different nursing programs from an Accelerated Bachelor of Nursing (ABSN) to a Post Doctoral Fellowship. The current faculty consists of 83 members who strive to help students develop the knowledge and skills to become excellent, compassionate nurses and nurse leaders. The faculty has been instrumental in helping this school achieve the status as one of the best nursing schools anywhere.

Registered nurses in North Carolina are needed to assess the health problems and needs of patients, to develop and implement plans for their care and maintain medical records for them. They are needed to administer care to sick, injured, convalescing and disabled patients. As the Baby Boom generation across the state ages, nurses are needed to help patients manage age-related issues. They are needed to provide advice on disease prevention and case management. Nurse educators are needed as well as nurses in all the state’s elementary, secondary and post-secondary schools and colleges.

Nurses in this state fall under the career cluster of Health Sciences and Health Care Practitioners and Technical major occupational group. A minimum of an Associate’s degree is required to become a nurse in North Carolina. In 2006, there 79,300 workers in this field. The growth outlook, or projected percentage of jobs between 2006 and 2016 is high at 3.16 percent. The average salary of a nurse in North Carolina is around $66,000 annually.

Students at Duke can traditionally become nurse leaders, nurse practitioners and nursing researchers. Academic programs are offered for Accelerated Bachelor of Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice, Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing and Post Doctoral Fellowship.

Using distance-based and on-line technology, Duke’s School of Nursing can offer its Master of Science in Nursing and its Doctor of Nursing Practice. They have done so for more than a decade now, and the on-line nursing degree program is of top-quality. MSN core courses are offered on-line one semester per year, sometimes more, and do not require students to come on campus.

Duke University’s School of Nursing has some amazing architecture. The Medical Center as well as other buildings on the Georgian-style East campus and Gothic-style west campus have been renovated by several projects over the years. All of the classrooms incorporate state-of-the-art cutting edge technology. The entire infrastructure of the campus is comprised of world class facilities. A highly qualified, world class faculty combined with all the other excellent facets of the school produce experiences for students that are also considered as world class.

Recently, the school has been striving to incorporate issues in global health and to improve patient care through research. The hard work of the administration and faculty of Duke University’s School of Nursing along with its rich history has earned the school high marks. In 2011, US News and World Report listed Duke as being one of the nations top seven graduate schools of nursing. In 2012, the online school was also ranked among the nation’s top seven on-line graduate nursing degree programs.

Students and faculty enjoy the quiet serenity of the forested campus that spans 8,600 acres. At the same time, it is in close proximity to downtown Durham. The university’s central North Carolina location makes weekend excursions to either the state’s beautiful beaches or mountains possible. A great campus life combined with a world-class education at a prestigious research university makes Duke University’s School of Nursing a top choice.

4. Washington University — St. Louis, MO

Washington University

Molecular Imaging and Therapy Center

For individuals seeking a nursing degree, an online search reveals that there are many options available, which often makes it difficult to narrow the choice down to just one school. However, Washington University in St. Louis, MO, not only offers one of the top nursing schools, but the unique architecture, world class opportunity for experience and use of new technology make it a top choice for many of those seeking a nursing career.

Originally known as the Training School for Nurses, the Washington University School of Nursing, began in 1905 as a three-year, non-collegite program. The first graduating class had five degree recipients in 1908, and students received theoretical and practical instruction from Medical School staff. Classes included anatomy, pathology, chemistry, obstetrics, along with many other medical-related coursework. In 1924, the name of the program changed to the School of Nursing, and a five-year program that led to a Bachelor of Science degree was implemented. Initially, students accepted for admission had to interview with the Superintendent to confirm they had the intelligence to carry out and obey orders. In addition, candidates had to be between 25 and 35 years old and “of good physique.” References that testified to the candidates “good moral character,” often from a minister were also required. Surprisingly, a high school diploma was preferred but not required, until 1915. Today, the student-to-teacher ratio for clinical courses is 8:1, and degrees include:

  • Associate of Arts in Health Science (AA)
  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
  • Accelerated Generalist Master in Nursing (AGMN)
  • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD)

Washington University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, and the School of Medicine is a member of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education. Washington University is a private research university, located in suburban St. Louis, and named after George Washington.

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (http://www.aacn.nche.edu/media-relations/nrsgshortagefs.pdf), the United States is projected to experience a shortage of nurses due to many factors that influence job outlook in health careers. As Baby Boomers age and nursing schools struggle to expand capacity as the nation moves toward healthcare reform, job growth for those with nursing degrees also increases. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth in nursing is expected to grow as much as 26 percent by 2020. In 2012, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that there were over 54,000 nurses employed in the state, and the annual mean wage was $64,000 annually (http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291141.htm). This indicates that those earning a nursing degree have an extremely high probability of employment after completing their nursing programs.

Washington University in St. Louis does not offer an online nursing degree program for AA or BSN degrees, requiring students to attend traditional nursing programs. However, the university does offer graduate-level online nursing courses, but students must have professional nursing practice experience in order to enroll. The graduate-level online program ranks 16th in the US News and World Report ranking of Online Graduate Nursing Programs. (http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/george-washington-university-ONUR0129/nursing).

Several factors separate the Washington University nursing program from nursing programs at other universities, including:

  • Architecture – The Danforth Campus features amazing Gothic architecture that include many buildings that appear on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Technology and Infrastructure – Washington University’s School of Medicine partners with world-class treatment facilities and organizations, in addition to engaging in innovative translational research using the latest technology and infrastructure available. In addition, students help to shape technology through internships and part-time employment.
  • World-class facilities – Laboratories and clinical classrooms offer state-of-the-art equipment and technology designed to teach nursing students in a real-world setting to help them better prepare for a nursing career after their education.
  • World-class faculty – The faculty at Washington University all hold a doctorate or final professional degree in their field, and twenty-three Nobel laureates have been associated with the university, nine of whom did the majority of their research at the university.
  • Experience Opportunity – Students who graduate from Washington University’s nursing program have an excellent opportunity for career advancement. In fact, many students from the university have gone on to be recognized with prestigious awards.
  • Recognition – Washington University School of Medicine, which includes the nursing program, is highly regarded as one of the leaders in medical research and training. In addition, US News and World Report rank the school second among the Best Physical Therapy schools, and tied for first for the Best Occupational Therapy School.
  • Programs of Study – Washington University offers several nursing programs for students including the anesthetist, family practitioner, researcher, forensics, pediatrics, acute care, neonatal and home healthcare fields.

Washington University offers many reasons why a student would choose to attend the St. Louis campus over other universities. As one of the top nursing schools, they consistently rank high among other colleges offering similar degrees. In addition, the faculty provides not only traditional education, but brings real-world experience into the classroom, and many of the staff are award-winning leaders in their field. One of the best nursing schools in the country, Washington University offers a wide range of nursing specialties, with the ability to earn degrees from the Associate of Arts level to the doctorate level. Some graduate-level courses are offered online for added convenience. Those considering entering nursing programs, Washington University in St. Louis offers the best mix of tradition and modern technology compared to other top nursing schools in the country.

5. University of California-Los Angeles — Los Angeles, CA

UCLA

Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center

As a highly respected institution of higher learning, the University of California at Los Angeles offers a leading nursing program with strict admissions requirements and a rigorous course of study. Choosing to train in a nursing program is a terrific decision since job openings in health care are likely to be some of the largest of any industry in the next several years.

UCLA is the largest university in the state of California and has a history stretching back to 1919. The school of nursing at the university came about in 1949 when the university created the program as part of the Centers for Health Sciences. The undergraduate program saw its first students enroll in 1950 where students would have the opportunity to earn a Bachelor of Science degree.

The graduate program at UCLA came about in 1951 when students were given the option to study for a Master of Science degree in Nursing. Although the MS degree program was eventually retired in the late 1960s, the school’s administration eventually created a doctorate program in 1987 where students could study to obtain a Doctor of Nursing Science degree.

The UCLA School of Nursing has almost 600 students enrolled in the program with almost 240 students enrolled in the undergraduate program and over 350 students enrolled in the graduate program. The School of Nursing comprises a fairly small percentage of the overall school population of over 38,000 students, yet it is regarded as one of the best nursing schools.

Like many professions within the healthcare industry, there is the expectation that the field of nursing will grow swiftly in the next decade. The arrival of many “Baby Boomers” at retirement age has already created opportunities for healthcare jobs and statisticians expect that need to grow as the population grows and ages.

Nursing jobs in California represent a unique employment opportunity for graduates, according to the California Employment Development Department (EDD), due to the high salary average and the number of expected job openings. Registered nurses are one of the fifty most popular jobs in the state for future growth.

Nationwide, the number of nursing jobs expected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) suggests that growth will be faster than the average of many other professions. Until the year 2020, the BLS projects that there will be nearly 712,000 registered nursing jobs added to hospitals, clinics, and doctor’s offices around the country. Enrolling in a program of study for a nursing degree offers a high chance for finding employment immediately after graduation.

The bulk of the curriculum at the UCLA School of Nursing requires students to attend classes on campus and the university specializes in offering classes that feature small groups of students. Additionally, the school focuses upon offering each student an individual academic trajectory that fits with that student’s future goals.

One of the most valuable facets of education at the School of Nursing is the university’s connection with the Ronald Regan UCLA Medical Center. This large hospital has an agreement with the hospital to provide clinical education at one of the most technologically advanced facilities that features several different specialty clinics.

Students in the nursing program must be prepared to undergo regular proficiency tests to ensure that the student is progressing well regarding training and skills. After each quarter, every student must take an online test to ensure that the student will be able to survive the rigors of post-education life. For students in the master’s program, there is also a comprehensive examination required at the end of study that the student must pass before a degree is awarded.

One of the reasons why students choose to attend UCLA is because of the significant funding available for study and research. The school isn’t very large; however, it is one of the top nursing schools in the country and receives large doses of funding from different research groups. For example, the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH) gave the UCLA School of Nursing $5.7 million dollars in research grants in 2012 alone. This figure placed the school as the seventh best funded school for research in the country.

Some of the fascinating studies conducted by the students and faculty of the UCLA School of Nursing include gene therapy with the goal of AIDS immunity and an in-depth study on the long-term impact of methamphetamine abuse. In addition, studies were recently conducted on early detection of donor organ rejection as well as how changes in protein and cholesterol impact the ability to identify Alzheimer’s disease.

The school expects that its alumni will lead distinguished careers and recognizes the achievements of past students. One recent accolade went to a clinical nurse specialist named Sandra Rome working at the Cedars-Sinai Samuel Oschin Comprehensive Cancer Institute. For over 20 years, this alumnus built a reputation within the exceptionally demanding oncology department and helped to create the hospital’s Bone Marrow Transplant Program.

There is little doubt that the UCLA’s nursing school is one of the best nursing programs in the country. Well-funded, exclusive, and renowned, the UCLA School of Nursing requires intense study and dedication from its students.

6. Johns Hopkins University — Baltimore, MD

Johns Hopkins

Medical Education Building

Johns Hopkins is a Private not-for-profit research university in Baltimore, Maryland. The university was established in 1876 and its nursing training program started in the same year; however, it was not until 1983 that the School of Nursing officially became the university’s eighth division. Today, Johns Hopkins University is known for its academic rigor as well as for the vast array of opportunities it presents to its nursing graduates. The school is internationally recognized as one of the world’s top nursing schools; graduates become part of a supportive international network of alumni that can guide and mentor them.

The School of Nursing is housed in the Anne M. Pinkard Building on the university’s East Baltimore Campus, which is 10 minutes away from the Homewood campus. The Anne M. Pinkard Building was the first building in the school’s history to be dedicated entirely to nursing education and research. It provides six floors with over 90,000 square feet of classroom space. There are two lecture halls with 110 seats each; one of the lecture halls is equipped for distance learning. The building also has a 230-seat auditorium along with gathering places for students, including a dining area. The Johns Hopkins School of Nursing has 184 faculty members and the student/faculty ratio is 13:1. All of the school’s full-time faculty members have a PhD or terminal degree.

According to the school’s present dean (Martha N. Hill), what sets the School of Nursing apart from its peers is the university’s “reputation for excellence.” This, combined with the fact that students have access to the nation’s top hospital make the School of Nursing special. The school’s magazine states that a Johns Hopkins nurse has a passion for patients and for teaching, as well as a “passion for excellence.” Karen Haller is the Vice President for Nursing and Patient Care Services at Johns Hopkins Hospital, she says that most of the school’s graduates have degrees in other fields and that this allows them to bring a diverse range of skills to the profession. Nancy McKelvey is the Chief Nurse and Lead for Healthcare Partnerships at the American Red Cross and a Johns Hopkins alumnus, she says that the fact that Johns Hopkins alumni have diverse backgrounds allows them to approach nursing with different perspectives and to “question the status quo.”

The Johns Hopkins School of Nursing is one of three schools that are tied for best nursing program in the nation, according to US News & World Report. The magazine also ranked the school as having the best Community/Public Health nursing programs. The Johns Hopkins School of Nursing is first among nursing schools in National Institutes of Health funding and the US national Research Council also places it among the nation’s top PhD programs in the nursing field.

Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing offers four programs that qualify graduates to start careers in nursing. The programs are:Bachelor’s of Science Nursing Degree

Bachelor’s of Science Nursing Degree
Students have the choice of either a summer-entry or fall entry accelerated program. The 13 month summer entry program is provided to students who have already earned a bachelor’s in another field of study and who are interested in earning one in nursing. Students start out in May of each year, and learn at an accelerated pace until July of the following year, which is when they graduate.

Master of Science Nursing Degree
This program prepares students for advanced nursing practice and nursing leadership. Students have the option of an accelerated BS-to-MSN program that comes with a paid clinical residency. Open to students with a BS in another field, this program puts the student on a fast track to their BS in nursing followed by their RN license and paid residency at a Johns Hopkins partner hospital. After the residency, they will be employed at the hospital full-time while pursing their MSN.

Online Master’s Tracks
Three of the school’s master’s tracks are available online. Students are provided with online access to all of the lecture materials for these graduate level nursing classes and can view them at their convenience. The online programs are:

- Clinical Nurse Specialist
This program is for RNs who want to expand their career opportunities and areas of expertise to include skills such as direct patient care delivery and the organization of services.

- Health Systems Management
This master’s program prepares students for leadership positions where they will have opportunities to improve the level of care offered by their institution. They will learn to manage and evaluate healthcare delivery systems.

- Clinical Nurse Specialist / Health Systems Management
This combination of the other two tracks provides graduates with the full array of skills needed for leadership and management positions in today’s healthcare landscape.

Additionally, the School of Nursing also offers a Nurse Educator Certificate program and an Applied Health Informatics Program Online.

BS to MSN Program
This is for students with bachelor’s degrees in other fields and takes as long to complete as getting a master’s only. Students get 11 master’s options to choose from and can take time off between programs to get practical experience on the job.

Doctoral Programs
At the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing, there are two options for doctoral degrees, they are:

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
The Johns Hopkins DNP program prepares students for leadership at the highest levels by training them to address problems in real time. They will learn to apply clinical learning and strategies for health promotion and illness prevention.

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Students entering the PhD program are prepared for a career in nursing research with the help of a world-renowned faculty and state-of-the-art facilities. They will be taught how to lead in the field of nursing and will be able to serve as educators and researchers advancing the nursing field.

School of Nursing offers it’s graduates various opportunities to start their career in nursing, including job fair preparation workshops and resume building services. There are also full- and part-time positions available via the school’s Career Resource Center. In Maryland, there are 45,630 registered nurses and their median annual salary is just over $71,000. Total RN employment in Maryland is expected to grow by 22.3 percent in the years between 2008 and 2018.

7. University of Colorado — Denver, CO

UC Denver

Health Sciences Library, Anschutz Medical Campus

The University of Colorado College of Nursing, located in Denver, Colorado, was founded in 1898. The historic school has been on the cutting edge of nursing practice since its inception, and continues to be one of the top nursing schools in the US. The University of Colorado offered the first nurse practitioner program in the United States as well as the first school nurse program in the US. Enrolling over 950 students, both undergraduate and graduate, the school offers several different avenues to obtaining a nursing degree, including coursework that can be done via distance learning.

The University of Colorado College of Nursing offers four nursing programs to earn a baccalaureate degree, including the traditional bachelor of science program as well as an accelerated “UCAN” pathway. Its progressive RN to BS program can be completed online, and there is also an option for completing a BS degree through the Community Colleges of Aurora and Denver.

The College of Nursing offers numerous opportunities for nursing professionals to expand their education by earning their masters’ degree or even a doctorate. The master’s degree program at the College of Nursing has 11 different specialties available, encouraging the development of future leaders in the field of nursing. The doctoral programs at the College of Nursing includes achieving a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) or a doctor of philosophy in nursing (PhD). There is also the exciting new degree option of DNP/MPH: A joint degree that results in a doctor of nursing practice as well as a masters in public health.

In light of changes expected in the way medicine, especially in the area of chronic conditions, will be practiced in the near future, the University of Colorado College of Nursing and the Colorado School of Public Health are creating a new doctor of nursing practice degree combined with a masters of public health degree. This dual program will be referred to as a DNP/MPH dual degree program.

The University of Colorado College of Nursing enrolls over 950 undergraduate and graduate students. Typically, one out of every ten applicants to the baccalaureate programs are accepted at the University of Colorado School of Nursing: The program is very competitive, with good reason: The main campus for the nursing college in located on the Anschutz Medical Campus, a brand new facility offering state-of-the-art technology. There are two hospitals located on campus, allowing students almost immediate access to the real practice of nursing, with real patients, physicians and medical staff. This opportunity provides invaluable experience to the nursing students at the University of Colorado College of Nursing.

The faculty to student ratio is 17:1, with many classes having less than 20 students. The faculty at the University of Colorado College of Nursing includes professionals that exemplify excellence in their fields as well as distinction as instructors. Faculty members have traveled the globe, working in developing countries in an effort to educate, assist and bring back first hand information on issues in third world nations. Some faculty members specialize in working with the elderly, or the very young, offering a vast range of experience to students attending classes and clinical.

US News & World Report ranked graduate schools in 2013; the Colorado College of Nursing ranked 5th for overall master’s program and the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner specialty. It ranked 13th in the nation in Nursing-Midwifery, and 16th in Nurse Practitioner for Family Nursing.

The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation to the bachelor, masters and DNP programs at the University of Colorado College of Nursing. Furthermore, the nurse midwifery program, a specialty within the masters program, is accredited by the American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM). The University of Colorado College of Nursing is further accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The RN to BS degree program can be completed online as well as two of the master’s degree options. The University of Colorado is pro-active in offering distance learning opportunities, with a distance learning history stretching back 30 years.
Outlook for medical professionals.

The job outlook for medical professionals, especially compassionate nurses, is excellent. According to the US Bureau of Labor & Statistics, the need for nurses is expected to increase, due in part to the aging general population and the move towards handling more patient care in outpatient settings. In Colorado in particular, the number of nursing professionals who are reaching retirement age is increasing, which constantly opens up new job positions in the field.

The field of nursing is an ever changing field, as medical researchers make new discoveries daily. This makes nursing a challenge. But it is just that challenge that enables medical professionals to continue to increase their knowledge and experience in order to provide the best quality nursing care to patients all over the world.
Strong consideration should be given to attending this higher learning institution.

As one of the best nursing schools available offering strong campus learning opportunities at a brand new facility as well as clinical practice on campus in real hospital settings, the options available to students seeking a nursing degree are practically endless.

8. Emory University — Atlanta, GA

Emory University

Candler Library

Emory University is an internationally respected, Ivy League, private university offering a range of undergraduate and graduate degrees. Emory is located in Atlanta, GA and is one of the few Ivy League schools available south of the Mason-Dixon line. Emory distinguishes itself as a leader among research institutions, working on over $500 million in grant-based research projects per year. In tandem with strong research priorities, Emory emphasizes its daily accountability to rigorous teaching, refusing to become a university that publishes but fails to produce equipped students. The 2012 Annual Report includes language specifically aimed at maintaining excellence in student education and richness in student experience, all set in the capable hands of the faculty and not with the administration. What does this mean for students? A better experience, determined by the professors who work most closely with the students, not an education driven by priorities set in a distant conference room by individuals long-removed from their own college experience.

The Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing is one of the top nursing schools in the country, and offers both bachelors and masters degrees in nursing. Program options include an accelerated degree program and a BSN for second-degree students. Students interested in Emory’s nursing programs also have the option of pursuing a masters in nursing concurrently with study toward a masters degree in bioethics or in public health. The school also offers two doctoral level tracks – a nursing PhD and Doctor of Nursing Practice.

The outlook for nursing in Georgia is strong, but students considering a career in nursing in Georgia need to keep in mind that wages in Georgia are lower than they are in other areas of the country. Cost of living accounts for some of this adjustment, but beware. Student loan debt can quickly cripple a new graduate.

Fortunately for nursing students, Emory is one of the best nursing schools in the country. Graduates can place in nursing positions across the United States, and do so while commanding excellent wages. Emory’s nursing program also provides excellent preparation for students wishing to advance in the nursing field, to participate in research, and to enter doctoral-level studies.

Emory’s College of Arts and Sciences is currently offering online course option for undergraduate studies. Online coursework is designed as a semester-long option available to students otherwise intending to complete studies in the residential format. There is not currently an online option available to nursing students at Emory.

Students come to Emory for its Ivy League status, plain and simple. There are few universities in the country that rival Emory’s academics. The school is historic, well-funded, boasts a beautiful campus in a thriving neighborhood in Atlanta, retains top-of-the-field professors who participate in innovative research, all while maintaining a vibrant campus life. Emory stands on the cutting edge of social issues as well, offering active assistance and disability services, advocacy services, and integrative perspectives on faith and life. Consistent with this elite level education, Emory also offers over 300 events centered around the arts each year, hosting individual and ensemble exhibits and performances across the range of fine arts disciplines. But why would an Ivy League caliber student choose Emory over another competing university?

Well, for one thing, Emory University has world-class vision – literally. This year, Emory welcomed His Holiness XIV Dali Lama to campus for the third time as the Presidential Distinguished Professor. In their bid to produce conscious and contributing citizens, Emory also does not miss current events. The University addressed a letter to each of the 13 congressional representatives from Georgia, highlighting the destructive effect that the federal government shutdown is having on biomedical research. Oh yeah, and Emory is internationally known for biomedical research, too. But, just in case you are nervous, you should also know that Emory has introduced a new degree – a Master of Arts in Bioethics. This university is not just about head knowledge, but also about human value and the conscious effort to honor characteristics of human dignity.

Emory University is recognized by US News & World Report as 20th overall in the nation in the National Universities category. Graduates from Emory consistently demonstrate high job placement averages and become leaders in their fields. But don’t be fooled by Emory’s academic excellence and international reputation; students in the nursing program at Emory don’t just hit the books. The city of Atlanta is a thriving metro community, richly imbued with history and the arts. The city boasts several cultural councils and websites listing interesting opportunities and fun events in the city. Students can enjoy the zoo, the Coca Cola factor, indoor rock-climbing gyms, paint-it-yourself art studios, the High Museum of Art, the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, baseball at Turner Field, the Fox Theater, concerts, shows, arts, and restaurants.

And, Atlanta has an Ikea. What nursing student can live without Ikea?

Students who pursue a career in nursing through Emory’s nursing program will not be disappointed. Interested applicants may contact Emory University’s Office of Admissions to discuss opportunities available at Emory and to review financing options with the Financial Aid office.

9. University of North Carolina — Chapel Hill, NC

UNC Chapel Hill

Wilson Library

Located in the beautiful and vibrant college town of Chapel Hill in North Carolina, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has earned a solid reputation as the 30th best college and 5th top public school in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. In addition, for the past six consecutive years, the Journal of Blacks in High Education has ranked UNC Chapel Hill as the 1st best school for awarding degrees to first-year African American students. When it first opened its doors to students in 1795, UNC Chapel Hill became the first public university in the United States. Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the four-year public institution is a prestigious member of the Association of American Universities. Now in its third century, UNC Chapel Hill offers 78 bachelor’s, 112 master’s, and 68 doctorate degree programs to more than 29,000 students from a faculty of 3,600.

The UNC Chapel Hill School of Nursing is also nationally recognized as one of the top nursing schools in the nation, with a triple threat of excellence in education, practice, and research for advancement in nursing. Since it was first established in 1950, the School of Nursing has been a premier leader in undergraduate and graduate nursing education in North Carolina. The School is fully accredited by the Commission on College Nursing Education (CCNE), American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), and grant approved by the North Carolina Board of Nursing. It is also a prestigious member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing and the Southern Council on Collegiate Education for Nursing.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics records from May 2012, there are 86,240 jobs in North Carolina for registered nurses. For every 1,000 jobs in the state, 22.23 are in professions for registered nurses and specialized nurses. Although employment for registered nurses is only expected to increase by 0.5 percent, jobs for nurse anesthetists are expected to grow by 2.1 percent and employment for nurse midwives is predicted to skyrocket by 5.3 percent before 2020. As the population for the state continues to climb and the baby boomer population ages, there is expected to be increased demand in the nursing field. In North Carolina, registered nurses earn a mean annual salary of $58,760, which translates to $28.25 for an average hourly wage.

Although the School of Nursing does not currently offer any online nursing degree options, there are some bridge courses for RN to MSN students offered completely online. Furthermore, some of the MSN program courses are provided in hybrid format, with some content being completed online and other sections completed in-person on campus. The following are the nursing degree programs that are offered by UNC Chapel Hill:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) – In the undergraduate program of study, students learn all of the knowledge, skills, and professional understanding needed to function efficiently in the profession. Students without prior nursing experience can enter a four-year program of general core courses and upper division nursing courses. Students who already have an Associate in Nursing (ASN) can enter a two-year accelerated path towards the bachelor’s degree.
  • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) – Within the two-year advanced graduate degree program to earn a MSN, registered nurses are prepared for clinical nursing leadership roles within a specific area of focus. Graduates from the program are eligible to sit for certification at the national level as a Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL).
  • PhD in Nursing – As the highest degree awarded in Nursing, the PhD program is designed to provide students with experience in conducting research in nursing and completing a dissertation research project to further nursing studies. PhD students can actively engage with the School’s award-winning faculty members at one of the 121 interdisciplinary research centers on campus to fulfill research competencies required for graduation.

As one of the best nursing schools in the state of North Carolina and the United States, the UNC Chapel Hill School of Nursing is ranked as the 4th best nursing school in the 2014 edition from the U.S. News and World Report. The School is also tied for 4th place for the psychiatric health clinical nurse specialty, 6th for nursing service administration, 10th for pediatric nurse practitioner specialty, and 12th for adult nurse practitioner specialty. Graduates from the School also have a proven track record of being prepared for nursing excellence, with more than 95 percent of students passing the NCLEX examination for certification on the first attempt.

Since its inception more than six decades ago, the School of Nursing has led the way with nursing education breakthroughs and numerous firsts. In 1950, it became the first in North Carolina to offer students a four-year bachelor’s degree in nursing. Five years later, the School of Nursing was the first the offer a master’s degree in nursing and first to begin initiating continuing education for professional nurses in the field. In 1970, UNC Chapel Hill was the first in the state to provide an accredited program to become a nurse practitioner. The School of Nursing also became the first school to grant a PhD doctorate degree in nursing in 1989.

In its enduring pursuit for advanced developments in the field, the School of Nursing is one of only a few elite schools in the nation to have its own Biobehavioral Laboratory as part of the Research Support Center (RSC) on campus. Through its strong research endeavors by the world-class faculty members, the School is committed to the study of prevention and management of chronic illnesses. Not only does the UNC Chapel Hill School of Nursing educate students and perform cutting-edge research in a variety of health care areas, it is partnered with some of the best organizations and agencies in North Carolina for unparalleled student internships.

10. New York University — New York, NY

NYU

NYU Medical Center and the Empire State Building

If you are interested in pursuing a nursing degree and you want to compare all of the top nursing schools in the country, doing so is possible with a bit of research and an understanding of various nursing programs that are currently available to you. A university that is considered one of the best nursing schools in the country is New York University.

The New York College of Nursing was originally founded in 1932. By 1947, the nursing program offered from NYU was established as its own educational program, separate from general studies and degrees offered from the university to other students. The NYU College of Nursing is located in the heart of midtown in New York City, at 726 Broadway.

New York University’s nursing program provides BS, MS, DNP and PhD degrees depending on the career you are pursuing as well as your area of expertise. Currently, The New York College of Nursing out of New York University is ranked 5th overall in research funding, directly awarded the title from the National Institute of Health (NIH).

Whether you are looking to obtain your Bachelor’s in Nursing or if you are seeking to pursue a Master’s in Nursing or even a PhD, NYU College of Nursing provides various programs to enroll in for both undergraduates and graduate students. There is a 15-month accelerated program available from NYU College of Nursing along with traditional four-year programs. According to the university itself, more than 90 percent of all NYU College of Nursing students pass their official NCLEX licensing exam on their very first attempt.

The undergraduate program available from the NYU College of Nursing provides both 15-month accelerated options as well as a traditional 4-year program, which is ideal for most full-time students. The nursing curriculum takes advantage of medical and technological resources in New York, giving students a more hands-on approach when getting familiar with tools and other medical procedures. There is also a state-of-the-art “Clinical Simulation Learning Center” for all students who are enrolled in the college.

Many of the staff who are working as college professors out of the university have been recognized or awarded as leaders and nursing scholars throughout the world. There is also faculty who specializes in various areas of the body, making it an ideal institution for students looking to branch off into specific areas of health and medicine. Because of the location of the college, NYU College of Nursing has the ability to provide all students with access to some of the most prestigious medical centers and technology available to use today.

Once you have completed an undergraduate program from the NYU College of Nursing, you have the option to pursue your education even further with a Master’s in Nursing degree or an advanced certificate program offered from the university. There is also a DNP program to help prepare nurse practitioners for larger roles within clinics, including leadership positions. The DNP program can be completed in just 5 weeks through the New York University College of Nursing.

When you want to obtain a PhD in nursing, you can do so by enrolling in the college’s program, which highlights theory development and nursing research. In order to qualify for the PhD program available from NYU College of Nursing, students must have completed their Master’s in Nursing prior to registering for the classes themselves.

For undergraduate students interested in the NYU College of Nursing, each term will run approximately $21,236, with additional registration and service fees of $1,188 for each term you are enrolled. You may also be required to pay for additional tuition, equal to about $1,315 per term, ultimately breaking down to $1,251 in tuition costs per unit of classes you are taking. For the Fall term of 2013, it costs $443 in nonreturnable registration and service fees. The first term in Spring 2014 will cost $461 in nonreturnable fees.

For graduates interested in pursing a Master’s or PhD in nursing, doing so is possible at the NYU College of Nursing. Each unit per term for graduate students runs $1,450. There are additional nonreturnable registration and service fees for graduate students as well. Students enrolled in a graduate program for the Fall 2013 are required to pay $443 in nonreturnable fees. Those who are waiting to begin graduate classes in Spring 2014 are responsible for $461 in service and registration fees.

Attending the NYU College of Nursing is a wonderful way to immerse yourself in classic and traditional architecture, taking you back in time with the buildings and their awe-inspiring surroundings. Additionally, NYU College of Nursing is one of the most well-known universities for nursing itself, giving you access to cutting-edge technology and infrastructure, allowing you to stay ahead in a competitive job market.

NYU College of Nursing provides all students with world-class faculty and facilities for those who are living on campus or nearby and are enrolled as part or full-time students. Students will also gain experience with medical professionals from all around the world and may also have opportunities that are considered once in a lifetime while training to become a licensed and practicing nurse.

The NYU College of Nursing has been noted various times in publications globally, including the World Report and US News. Due to its ever-evolving curriculum and technology, NYU College of Nursing proudly boasts multiple programs to study from regardless of the degree you are pursuing.

Taking the time to research all of the advantages NYU College of Nursing has to offer over other educational institutions is a way for you to truly feel confident in your decision to enroll, regardless of the program you want to take on. Whether you want to work towards a Bachelor’s in Nursing or if you are aiming for a PhD in Nursing, you can truly expand your career experience and opportunities by becoming a student at NYU College of Nursing.

11. University of Virginia — Charlottesville, VA

University of Virginia

Claude Moore Medical Education Building

The University of Virginia is located in the lovely town of Charlottesville, Virginia and consists of eleven architecturally beautiful schools. The University plays an important role in the town of Charlottesville’s history being founded in 1819 by one of our nation’s greatest presidents, Thomas Jefferson (U. Va. 2013). The University was built by great leaders in the beginning and today, provides education to the future leaders of this country.

The University of Virginia School of Nursing, established in 1901, is part of the institution’s well renowned academic health care system. The school’s Medical Center is a large network of health care facilities and services, including the Emily Couric Cancer Center and a 577-bed hospital with a state a Level 1 trauma center (U. Va. 2013). The services offered by the U. Va. Medical Center are of high quality and have provided advanced care to visitors and a great environment for medical students.

U.Va. is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and is one of a select group of 58 American and Canadian universities chosen for membership in the prestigious Association of American Universities (U.Va Rector 1997). The School of Nursing degrees (baccalaureate, master’s, and doctor of nursing practice) are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (U. Va Rector 1997). The School of Nursing pre-licensure degree programs are approved by the Virginia Board of Nursing (U. Va Rector 1997).

The University of Virginia is a public higher education institution and welcomes students from all around the world. With a facility to student ratio of 16:1, the school is well known for its small sized classes (USNews 2013). In fact, more than half of the classes offered at U. Va. have less than 20 students attending, making it an easy learning environment (USNews 2013).

The University of Virginia School of Nursing ranks among the very best in the country. The school is ranked among the top 2% of nursing schools in the entire nation by US News and World Report (DVP). The Psych-Mental Health program is also on the top of the lists currently ranked #8 by US News (DVP). The school continues to strive for success by providing the very best and advanced medical teaching and research.

Is now the time to become a nurse? How hard will it be finding a job? To answer these questions, it is helpful to know the state’s projected need for nurses. The Virginia Department of Health Professions predicts that Virginia’s population to grow by one million in the next two decades, making the need for nurses increase (DVD). The population will also be aging resulting in about 16% of the people being over the age of 65 (DVP). This will be one main contributing factor for the increase in nurses and other medical professions.

With the U. Va’s well-equipped classrooms, halls, and medical centers, earning a nursing degree is easier than ever. Located in the Claude Moore Nursing Education Building and the McLeod Hal, classrooms are loaded with high tech medical equipment to give students a hands-on learning experience. For student’s convince, some classes are even offered online.

Along with being a “high tech” school, the U. Va. School of Nursing also provides students an abundant of history with its many historical buildings and centers. The Eleanor Crowder Bjoring Center for Nursing Historical supports the historical scholarship in nursing and is dedicated to the preservation and study of nursing history. Students can feel taken back by all of the historical artifacts and architecture that fills the University’s campus.

Overall, the University of Virginia Nursing School offers a world class facility along with award winning faculty. Students attending U. Va. will, no doubt, have a wonderful learning experience that they can proudly take anywhere in life with them.

Here are some reviews from U. Va. students:

“I find the professors to be very knowledgeable in their areas of expertise. They make their classes interactive and apply concepts to real life and world events. The workload can be tough to manage at times, but I appreciate the focus on critical thinking.”

“There are all sorts of things to do at UVA. If you are willing to put yourself out there and try new things, then you will almost never be bored. They have clubs and activities for just about everything and if you can’t find one you like then UVA is so student run that you can literally make one. They have a really nice fitness center and tons of great places to study (including the Harry Potter room!). They is such a great sense of community here and all the traditions are so much fun to be a part of.”

12. University of Rochester — Rochester, NY

University of Rochester

Medical Research Building II

Located at 255 Crittenden Blvd. in Rochester, New York, the University of Rochester School of Nursing is a private college, founded in 1925. Its first supervisor was Helen Wood, and her vision for a quality nursing education evolved through the decades since her tenure. The overall university ratio of students to faculty is ten to one, and many of the classes contain 25 or fewer students. The School of Nursing offers several programs of learning, from BS to Master’s degrees and Post Graduate Certification. Students who apply to the School of Nursing are either registered Nurses seeking degrees, or they are people already holding at least a Bachelor’s degree in an unrelated field. Rochester University School of Nursing is registered by The State Education Department and accredited by The Commission on Collegiate Nursing. The Post-Master’s program, which does not lead to a degree, but is for Master’s –level nurses who want to become nurse practitioners, is certified by The National league for Nursing Accreditation Committee.

Will there be jobs available for new nurses graduating in New York State? The answer is absolutely. Nursing, along with related medical fields such as nursing assistants, appears high in the list of professions and occupations with –than-average expected future job growth. With the inception of The Obama Affordable Care Act, more people are coming into hospitals and clinics because they have insurance. This compounds the national shortage already occurring in medical practitioners. According to nyjob source.com the projected growth rate for this field is 17-48%. The lower rate is for nurses in industrial settings. The rate for hospital nurses is higher, but the highest rate is for nurses employed by private physicians and clinics.

The University Of Rochester School Of Nursing does have online learning programs in addition to traditional classroom education. Some of the programs are full-time online while others are hybrids, combining both learning types. The School of Nursing Fast Track Program is entirely on line. It is an accelerated learning program for non-professional students. Part-time computer courses are mainly prerequisite classes for the RN-to BS program.

The University of Rochester was first located in downtown Rochester, in the United States Hotel. Since then, the university has acquired numerous buildings. Still, the best known is the Rush Rhees Library, which is the unofficial symbol of the school. The gorgeous library is built in Greek Revival style and reminds visitors of the US Capitol building. It houses the Hopeman Memorial Carillon, the largest in the state, which contains 50 bells and plays on the quarter hour. The River Campus, as it is called, sits along the Genesee River and offers beautiful natural scenery, but it is close to vital, metropolitan Rochester. The school of nursing uses a “Unification Model” in its course curriculum. This means that classroom teaching goes hand-in-glove with practical experience. Each faculty member is a practicing clinician as well as a teacher, and many are involved in research. In addition, one of the school’s components is The Center for Lifelong Learning, which is accredited and offers continuing professional education past the graduate level. The world-class faculty, in addition to being at the forefront of nursing education, comes from all over the country. They are diverse in theory and in teaching techniques. Many specialize in research or are well-known clinicians. They teach in a world-class facility too. The students get clinical experience in The University of Rochester Medical Center and Strong Memorial Hospital, both just across the street from the school. Classrooms feature wireless, video conferencing and smart classroom technology. Perhaps the most well-known of the school’s resources is Sim-Man, the computer-driven mannequin that can respond to various nursing interventions.

The University of Rochester School of Nursing is rated as one of the top nursing schools in the nation. US News and World Reports ranks the graduate school as number 32 in its list of top schools. The Washington Monthly College Ratings gave the school of nursing a ranking of 21 in the nation for its low student-to-faculty ratio. The American Journal of Nursing recognized The Rochester University School of Nursing as one of the best nursing schools because of its emphasis on long-term care education. In its March, 2006, issue Fortune Magazine named the school of nursing as one of the ten top nursing schools in the nation because of its unique entrepreneur degree.

The entrepreneur degree from the Center for Nursing Entrepreneurship is only one innovation at the University of Rochester School of Nursing. They also have a new pediatric nurse degree, and a Doctor of Nursing program. The school is the first to offer a Master’s degree in Leadership in Disaster Response and Emergency Preparedness.

The University of Rochester has all the great intellectual resources you would expect from a world-renowned university. The school of nursing, however, is small, with only 400 students. Classroom settings are intimate and cordial, but the faculty compiles a wealth of knowledge, and the proximity of one of the nation’s premiere research hospitals offers students a chance to put the education the faculty imparts to them into practice. You will have rotations in The University of Rochester Medical Center, a hospital that has a large cutting-edge neo-natal intensive care unit. The diversity of academic programs is a draw too. The University of Rochester School of Nursing offers nursing programs from the BS degree to PhD’s and Post Doctorial studies. If you are looking for the small-school amenities with the resources of a major university, this is the nursing school for you.

13. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor — Ann Arbor, MI

University of Michigan - Ann Arbor

A. Alfred Taubman Biomedical Science Research Building

The nursing school at the University of Michigan is located in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The University of Michigan–Ann Arbor has approximately 41,000 students in 19 schools, 200 programs, and hundreds of majors. The university includes both a four year undergraduate program and several graduate programs, including master’s degree, doctorate, and professional degree programs. U of M currently employs approximately 6,000 faculty and 32,000 staff.

The University of Michigan–Ann Arbor is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools through the year The School of Nursing is accredited by the Collegiate Commission on Nursing Education through 2022. It has received approval by the State of Michigan’s Board of Nursing.

Founded in 1817, the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor became the first public university located in the Northwest Territory. The school was originally built in the area that is now known as Detroit, Michigan. In 1837, U of M was relocated to Ann Arbor, where it currently has its main campus. In 1956, a second campus was opened in Flint, Michigan and in 1958, the third campus was opened in Dearborn, Michigan.

In 1891, U of M opened its first training school for nurses. The nursing school was opened as a subset of the university’s medical school and first served a class of six. The original program began as a two-year program.

In 1912, the Training School for Nurses was moved from the direction of the university medical school to the University of Michigan Hospital. By 1915, new enrollment criteria were created to require all students to have first completed a four-year high school diploma prior to being admitted into the nursing school. The student body had grown from the original six to over 130 students.

By 1919, students at the University Hospital Nursing School were able to finally earn a degree in nursing. Students were then required to take three years worth of courses in the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts followed by taking another two years worth of courses in the School of Nursing.

In 1952, the previous degree programs were discontinued in favor of the new Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. By 1960, 159 BSN degrees were earned. In 1961 and 1962, master’s level programs were instituted for several nursing specialties, including psychiatric nursing and surgical nursing.

By the 2000s, the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor School of Nursing was well established as one of the nation’s top nursing schools. In 2007, the U.S. News and World Report ranked the school as fifth in the nation for nursing programs. The program continues to grow, change, and thrive today with a newly created Doctorate of Nursing Practice degree program and a new state-of-the-art 75,000 square foot School of Nursing building. This building includes simulation labs, skill labs, and simulated patient suites in order to allow nursing students to get real-life and hands-on experience in both simple and complex patient cases.

Students seeking to pursue nursing degrees are often curious about the future of nursing and whether jobs will be available following graduation. Due to a declining economy, many nurses that were close to retirement chose to continue working rather than retire in order to keep their income and benefits during the economic uncertainty. As the economy in Michigan begins to recover, these nurses are planning retirements and will leave significant vacancies in Michigan hospitals. Some hospital systems in Michigan are reporting close to 50 openings for registered nurses currently. Nursing schools in the state have reported that the majority of students are finding jobs within six months of graduation in the nursing field.

An increase in Michigan’s elderly and chronically ill population has also produced an increased demand for registered nurses who are seeking to work in long-term care facilities. Illnesses that were fatal years ago are now able to be treated, but these patients are sicker during the recovery period and require specialized nursing care.

Increased health care needs due to this growing and aging population, as well as quickly advancing medical technology contribute to a very positive employment outlook for registered nurses. The demand for registered nurses in Michigan is continuing to grow at a much more rapid pace than the demand for other occupations. The expectations of nurses is expected to grow and change as well, as nurses begin to take on some of the responsibilities formerly handled by physicians, so specialization in a particular high-demand area of nursing can help to increase the likelihood that a nursing school graduate will find employment.

The University of Michigan–Ann Arbor has several program options for students seeking to earn a nursing degree. Undergraduate nursing programs include a traditional four-year Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing Program A 16-month accelerated second career BSN program allows those who have already earned a bachelor’s degree in another field to change to a nursing career.

For those seeking an advanced degree, the university offers several master’s degree programs. The Acute, Critical, and Long-Term Care degree offers programs in the gerontology acute care and acute pediatric nurse practitioner and nurse specialist field. The Master’s in Health Promotion and Risk Reduction program offers specialties in nurse midwifery, family primary care, and pediatric primary care. The Master’s in Nursing Business and Health Systems degree offers specials in nursing business and health systems, business administration, health services administration, and information systems.

Doctorate degrees are available in several specializations as well. Students can earn a PhD in health promotion and risk reduction, bio-behavior, nursing systems, and women’s health. A Post-Master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice degree is also available.

The University of Michigan also offers certificates in clinical research management, post-master’s nursing, and nursing education. These certificate programs are perfect for registered nurses who would like to continue their education. Certificate programs also offer the opportunity to specialize in a high-demand area of nursing.

For students pursuing a degree in nursing, the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor offers a state-of-the-art education. The amazing architecture and cutting edge technology of the newly constructed 75,000 square foot School of Nursing offers hands-on patient simulation labs. In addition, the school collaborates with the National Institutes of Health and the World Health Organization to offer nursing students opportunities to engage in and learn from high quality research from some of the world’s leading experts in the medical field. With a research budget of over $1 billion and a 1.2 million square foot research facility, the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor is able to train nurses to become experts in their field, able to handle all of the challenges of a quickly advancing medical field.

14. University of Minnesota-Twin Cities — Minneapolis, MN

University of Minnesota

Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum

When you’re looking for the best in nursing programs, not just any school will do. The University of Minnesota School of Nursing, located in Minneapolis, has been a leading nursing school since its founding in 1909. When it opened, it was the first “continuously operated” school of nursing that was based at a university.

Today the school offers nursing degrees at the bachelors, masters and doctoral level. It also offers post-graduate certificate programs for professionals who want to gain extra knowledge in a given field. Its approximately 350 students are served by 80 faculty members, 72% of which are full-time. About 91% of the students are female. Classes are held at the urban Minneapolis campus, with a satellite location at UM Rochester. Their degree programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The job market is challenging almost everywhere, but nursing is still considered a growing field. In Minnesota, health care is one of the fastest growing occupations, along with education and information technology. According to projected numbers from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, Registered Nurses are among the fastest growing occupations in the state between 2009 and 2019 and among the top three occupations in terms of adding the most jobs within that time frame. While no one can be certain of employment, getting a degree from one of the top nursing schools will certainly provide you with a solid step in that direction.

If you’re starting out as an undergraduate looking to get a nursing degree at UM-Twin Cities, you will enroll in their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program, a full-time four-year program that includes one year of prerequisite classes followed by three years of sequenced classes. This degree focuses on basic nursing skills, and students are expected to do clinical rotations during their course of study. The school is fortunate to have, as clinical sites for students, both the University of Minnesota Medical Center in Fairview, considered one of the top hospitals in the country, and the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, which is respected all over the world.

The Master of Nursing degree (MN) is a full-time 16 month program for those who hold at least a Bachelor’s degree in another field. It incorporates the basic studies of the BSN and other graduate work. The core courses are science-based and the coursework is then further supplemented by supervised clinical practice in hospitals, clinics, schools or other healthcare facilities. Both the BSN and the MN degrees are provided in traditional classrooms, but the school utilizes interactive and web-based components to enhance the curriculum.

The PhD program offers traditional and web-based options for study in a variety of leadership skills and research, helping to prepare professionals for jobs in academia, business, research and other types of health care work. The program recently celebrated its 30th anniversary. Focused less on research and more on clinical practice is the Doctor of Nursing Practice program (DNP) which offers advanced doctoral work for those who hold either the BSN or MN degree. Students are able to participate in clinical practice at over 250 different sites under the mentorship of a variety of respected professionals. This DNP is one of the largest programs of its kind in the U.S. It was also the first such program to offer DNP degrees in Midwifery, Nurse Anesthetist, Nursing Informatics and Health Innovation and Leadership.

Whether you decide to pursue an undergraduate or graduate degree in nursing at UM, you can be assured of a quality education in one of the best nursing schools. You will benefit from its affiliation with seven specific centers of study in a variety of fields, including nursing leadership, gerontology, adolescent nursing and child and family health. You will glean wisdom from a top-notch faculty, 23 of whom have become fellows in the American Academy of Nursing. The preparation provided by their nursing programs will also give you a good chance at passing the RN certification exam the first time you take it, as 93% of their BSN graduates and 97% of their MN graduates are able to do so.

You can also be assured of the school’s excellent reputation. It was ranked 21st out of over 400 nursing graduate programs by U.S. News and World Report, with its graduate programs in midwifery and public health nursing ranked especially high, at numbers six and four respectively. You’ll also enjoy the opportunity to work within their brand new Bentson Center, which provides a cutting-edge learning environment. This 11,000 square foot center provides a simulation environment for students and teaching to learn via high-class technology. Simulation activities are provided in a variety of areas of nursing practice including surgical, critical and home care. The Center collaborates within the local community to provide ongoing training and research opportunities for the staff of local hospitals.

As one of the top nursing schools in the country, the University of Minnesota School of Nursing can provide you with the skills and know-how you need to provide excellent care to patients and stay abreast of changing skills in the field.

15. University of Texas at Austin — Austin, TX

University of Texas

University of Texas Tower

The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing is one of the leading full curriculum nursing schools in the nation. Founded in 1883, the university first opened the School of Nursing in 1960. Doctoral degrees were initially conferred in 1974. Over five decades under a succession of nationally acclaimed deans, the school has established a tradition of excellence, offering undergraduate and graduate programs known for award winning academic achievement, leading-edge medical research, and community service. Students choose the UT School of nursing for:

  • An excellent faculty to student ratio and full range of nursing curricula
  • Innovative research focused on healthy lifestyle behaviors and lifetime wellness
  • Community-based clinics that put students
  • Collaborative educational and research partnerships
  • Outstanding student life opportunities in a world class university environment

The School of Nursing enrolled over 1100 students with a faculty and staff totaling 250 – an excellent student to staff ratio of 1:5. Approximately 60 percent of students are undergraduates, and doctoral candidates make up roughly four percent of students. Minority students make up approximately 40 percent of the student body and one in ten nursing students are male.

The nursing faculty at the University of Texas are actively involved in research programs to promote wellness and disease prevention in underserved Central Texas communities. Specific grants for research focus on children’s and women’s health, improving quality of life for persons with disabilities, and research combining physiological and technological advances to advance nursing disciplines.

Accredited by the Commission on Colleges, adjunct to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, the UT School of Nursing offers BSN and MSN degrees, and doctorates in philosophy (PhD) in Nursing. Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Bachelor of Science in Nursing
The BSN program offers nursing students a curriculum that is both theoretical and practical. This regimen prepares graduates work opportunities in a wide variety of clinical settings and provides a platform for advanced master of science and doctoral degrees in nursing. BSN program graduates will gain the knowledge and practical skills to be qualified for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

Associate Degree in Nursing to Bachelor of Science in Nursing
Registered nurses with an associate degree or diploma in nursing (ADN) who wish to advance in the nursing profession are offered the comprehensive ADN-BSN curriculum to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing – the gateway to advanced education and practical nursing roles.

Alternate Entry Master of Science in Nursing
The AE MSN program is designed for students seeking a Registered Nurse (RN) License and Master of Science in Nursing degree, but whose baccalaureate or graduate degrees are in disciplines other than nursing. AE MSN graduates are prepared for numerous nursing positions and typically advance rapidly in their nursing careers as they acquire practical experience.

Master of Science in Nursing
The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program offers advanced study in ten select areas of nursing science. MSN graduates are prepared for leadership roles in professional foundations, research and science clinics, and academia. Students must be currently licensed as a Registered Nurse and have either a BSN degree, or a baccalaureate degree in another discipline plus an ADN degree or Nursing Diploma.

Alternate Entry Doctor of Philosophy
The alternate entry PhD program at the University of Texas prepares graduate students with degrees in fields other than nursing to assume leadership roles in medical research, in nursing, and in other fields of healthcare delivery. This PhD program employs innovate conceptual approaches, stimulating and challenging interactions, and partnerships with active researchers development structured around an individually customized plan of coursework.

Doctor of Philosophy
The doctoral program at the University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing prepares qualified graduate students for advanced leadership roles in all fields of healthcare. Each doctoral student confers with faculty advisors to design a specific course of study based on their nursing background, interests, and goals. The program offers opportunities for research funding and prepares doctoral candidates for a lifelong career in their chosen field of nursing science.

Not only is the School of Nursing a major center of nursing education, it is part of one of the most dynamic and vibrant universities in the world. The American Assembly for Men in Nursing (AAMN) awarded UT the “Best School or College of Nursing for Men Award” in 2005, and the School of Nursing MSN degree program is ranked among the top 20 programs in the nation according to the US News and World Report. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) places UT as a top university in research funding with research and training grants of more than $18 million and state funding of $7.5 million. But, as a nursing student at the University of Texas in Austin, there is much more than just a college education.

  • The University of Texas is located in Austin, Texas – the seat of government for the State of Texas and an acknowledged world center for high technology, research, and academic excellence.
  • The University currently has more than 50,000 students from all over the world and a full time staff of more than 15,000 and more than 3000 tenured and accredited professors.
  • The athletic programs at the University of Texas have produced national championships in football, baseball, basketball, track and field, golf and swimming, among others.
  • The University of Texas campus at Austin is considered to be one of the most beautiful in America. The colonial Texas architecture of the original 40 Acres is paired with award winning contemporary buildings to produce an exhilarating academic environment.
  • A wide variety of financial assistance programs are available for students with more than ten scholarship categories specifically awarded to nursing students.

When it comes to a nursing degree, there are many choices, but for the student who strives for excellence, for the person who seeks the very best education available, there is only one choice – the University of Texas at Austin. When 50,000 students rise and sing “The Eyes of Texas Are Upon You” there’s a sense of pride no other university can deliver. Hook ‘em Horns!

16. Ohio State University — Columbus, OH

Ohio State University

Cunz Hall

The University of Ohio College of Nursing sits in the midst of the expansive Ohio State University campus. The main campus of the university can be found in Columbus, the capitol city of Ohio.

The Ohio State University school of nursing was founded in 1914 as a three year nursing program. In 1922 the nursing school was relocated to the university’s College of Medicine, and renamed as the Starling-Lovell Hospital. Throughout the following years, the nursing program went through several changes in degree length, and in 1941 the traditional 4 year program, Bachelor of Science in Nursing was officially established.

In 1966, building began on the new nursing school named, Mildred E. Newton PhD, after the school’s director from 1951 thru 1968. Until 1984, the nursing college continued to be under the administration of the College of Medicine when it was given status as an independent school and became The Ohio State University College of Nursing.

As part of a large public university, a wide variety of degrees and certificates are awarded. With both a Bachelor and Master of Science offered, along with Doctor of Philosophy, and Doctor of Nursing, it is no surprise that the nursing college is one of the finest.

A key part in obtaining any degree is in having excellent instructors. The faculty at Ohio State are some of the best educators in their field. The ratio of students to teachers is also important and with 117 faculty members and an administrative staff totaling 45, the student body (1756) is well served.

Ohio, like most of states is experiencing a rise in the need for qualified nurses. A nursing degree, also can open the way for other employment opportunities such as administrative work and in the field of education. Salaries vary, with the average low end of the pay scale averaging at around fifteen dollars per hour.

Unlike some degrees in other fields of study, a degree in nursing does require in class attendance. For either the Undergraduate program or for the Master’s program, a student’s prerequisite classes may be taken online. student’s required courses though must be taken in the classroom or in a clinic setting.

The Ohio State University College of Nursing is one of the top nursing schools in the country. The Ohio State University was founded in 1870, and elected into the Association of American Universities in 1916.

Choosing a school includes more than just being the best nursing school. Strolling through the campus at The Ohio State University, students marvel at the stately oaks throughout the campus. Plenty of lush green lawns dot the campus for students use, and squirrels play along the paths. New students always stop to make a wish in Mirror Lake nestled on the campus, hoping for a good year.

With a beautiful campus is also a large research community. The Ohio State University is ranked 7th among public universities and 11th overall in the nation. Ohio State University is also ranked in the top three for private research. Some of these world class research facilities include the Aeronautical/Astronautical Research Laboratory, and the Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The Ohio State University with it’s large ethnically diverse student body has received world recognition. Ranked 111th in world universities, The Ohio State University’s multicultural programs have received world wide recognition. The Ohio State’s Middle Eastern Studies Center and East Asian Studies Centers have also won recognition world wide. In 2009, U.S. News and World Report ranked the graduate program in the Design college 5th in the nation.

There is also an honors program for high ability students. The honors program is open to students in all of the majors, and the scholars program is open to those only in the following fields

  • Architecture Studies
  • Media Scholars
  • Biological Scholars
  • International Affairs
  • Politics
  • Business Affairs

The Ohio State University also offers other types of academic and athletic scholarships.

With all that The Ohio State University has to offer, it is easy to see why it remains one of the top universities in the world. The campus life is full of energy. There are over 150 different school orginizations to join. Conviently located in downtown Columbus, there is always something for any student to do. Full of school spirit, athletics, and students from around the world, it is a university that truly is for everyone. Visit Columbus and see for yourself how great The University of Ohio State is.

17. University of Wisconsin-Madison — Madison, WI

University of Wisconsin

Health Sciences Learning Center

Nursing is a field that continues to grow, with qualified nurses more in demand every year. Students interested in becoming part of this demanding occupation may want to earn their nursing degrees at the University of Wisconsin – Madison School of Nursing, one of the top nursing schools in the nation.

The University of Wisconsin – Madison School of Nursing, located in the state’s capital city, is one of 13 schools and colleges to make up the University of Wisconsin –Madison campus, which consists of 936 acres. The University of Wisconsin – Madison is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The university has more than 2,000 faculty members and offers a student-to-faculty ratio of 17:1. Established in 1924, the UW – Madison School of Nursing is known for its variety of nursing programs and its reputation as one of the state’s top research institutions. UW – Madison School of Nursing is a 4-year, public school with a student enrollment of more than 500 students and a wide array of nursing degree programs; 81% of the nursing students in 2013 were from Wisconsin.

Although Wisconsin licenses more than 3,000 each year and ranks 13th in the nation in terms of RNs per population, Wisconsin is still predicted to have a shortage of registered nursing, according to the Wisconsin Center for Nursing. Consequently, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development reports that registered nurses in Wisconsin should see an employment growth of 23.9% between from 2010-2020. While many nurses find employment in hospitals and physicians’ offices, the largest employment growth for RNs is expected to be in outpatient care centers. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that there were 54,640 registered nursing employed in Wisconsin as of May 2012, and they earned a mean annual wage of $64,000. The BLS also reported that registered nurses nationwide could expect to see an employment growth of 26% between 2010 and 2020.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing offers students various degree programs. Students can choose from the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), Bachelor of Science (BS) in Nursing to Master of Public Health (MPH), the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) and the Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD). Interested candidates can also complete postdoctoral training at the UW School of Nursing in Madison. The university offers an Early Entry PhD option for undergraduate students interested in careers in research. Successful graduates of this program earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Doctor of Philosophy.

The school offers two school nurse certificate programs; one is an on-campus program and one is an online program. The RN to BSN program can be taken as a full-time on-campus program or a part-time online program. Nursing students who have high academic achievements may pursue an Honors Degree with the help of a mentor; successful candidates earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with Honors. Students can perform research and complete clinical rotations at world-renowned facilities in and near Madison. Students may work at the American Family Children’s Hospital, the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics and UW Carbone Cancer Center, as well as nursing homes, daycare centers and public health facilities. There are about 100 clinical sites available.

In the fall of 2013, the School of Nursing started a new program called the Nursing Freshman Entry Option which allows students to begin their prerequisite and nursing courses in the first year rather than wait until their sophomore year to start their nursing courses. This program admits 20-25 academically eligible students each year, with Wisconsin students receiving first priority.

The renowned faculty members and wide array of nursing programs offered are not the only things that make the University of Wisconsin – Madison stand out as a top university. UW – Madison is acknowledged year after year for its excellence both nationally and globally. In 2013, UW-Madison was ranked 10th among the best public universities by U.S. News & World Report. Kiplinger’s ranked UW-Madison 13th among the 100 best values in public colleges in 2013. In 2011, the university ranked 4th for total research expenditures among public universities and 4th as a top producer of Fortune 500 CEOs. Additionally, the UW-Madison College of Nursing was ranked 21st in the U.S. News & World Report 2013 Best Grad School Rankings. This ranking was based on the school’s curriculum, scholarship and quality of its nursing graduate school. These are just a few of the many awards and recognitions UW-Madison has earned through the years.

Students enrolling in the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Nursing have the opportunity to learn at the Signe Skott Cooper Hall, a $53 million, 5-story state-of-the-art facility that offers the country’s largest collaborative classroom. Special features of this facility are interactive classrooms that utilize wireless instructional technology and offer audio/video capabilities. Of special interest is the Center for Technology-Enhanced Nursing, an instructional and research facility with simulation labs. Cooper Hall, which is scheduled to open in the fall of 2014, will have a 300-seat auditorium, exercise rooms, research project offices and additional features that will contribute to making it one of the most advanced and innovative research and teaching schools for nursing in the nation.

Students attending the School of Nursing are taught by world-class faculty members who are teachers, scholars, clinicians and board-certified practitioners. Of special interest is that 34 Pulitzer Prizes and 19 Nobel Prizes have been awarded to alumni or faculty of UW-Madison. Additionally, more than 1,050 UW alumni now serve as CEOs. The UW-Madison School of Nursing works with well-known researchers and scientists across the globe and has become a vital part of the state’s healthcare center. The university offers several resources to help prepare students for employment and possible find work after graduation. These may include on-campus interviewing, career fairs and on-campus recruiting.

18. Indiana University — Indianapolis, IN

Indiana University

Maxwell Hall

If you are looking for one of the best nursing schools in Indiana and beyond, you are in luck. The Indiana University School of Nursing is located in the town of Indianapolis on the IUPUI Campus, it houses one of the top nursing schools in the state. Founded in 1914, the School of Nursing at Indiana University is home to one of the largest nursing education programs in the United States. The School of Nursing at Indiana University, a 4-year public university with a faculty-to-student ratio of 18:1, grants bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in nursing and research.

The School of Nursing at Indiana University gained accreditation with the following professional bodies:

  • National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission
  • Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Indiana State Board of Nursing
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation
  • The Higher Learning Commission (A Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools)

If I Go to the School of Nursing at IU, Will I Find Work In Nursing When I Graduate?
Your chances look good. The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects employment for nurses in the United States to increase faster than other occupations through the year 2020. In central Indiana, you can expect to earn about $45,000 a year, depending on your level of experience and where you choose to work.

What is the BSN program at IU’s School of Nursing Like? How Do I Gain Admission
If you are a seeking a bachelor’s of nursing degree at IU, rest assured that you will get an extensive and exhaustive education in the humanities and sciences that will prepare you for a successful nursing career. But before you don those scrubs, you must first get admitted to the School of Nursing. To do so, you must present a formal application that highlights your performance in science, math and other prerequisite courses at IU. You must also take the TEAS V (Test of Essential Academic Skills), an examination that tests your ability to excel in areas that you will encounter in your nursing education. Admission to the School of Nursing at IU is competitive, so have an alternative course of study if you fail to gain entry after multiple applications.

I Am Already A Registered Nurse. Is There An RN to BSN Program at the School of Nursing at IU?
Yes. If you are able to provide evidence of nurse licensure from the U.S. state in which you practice, you can enroll in IU’s RN to BSN program. The program is 100 percent online, so you do not have to be an Indiana resident to enroll. However, nurses who do not reside in Indiana should note that the out-of-state fees make tuition higher than it would be for in-state residents.

What Makes The School of Nursing Stand Out From Other Nursing Programs in the State of Indiana?
There are many reasons why the School of Nursing at IU stands out as one of the top nursing programs. Some of the stellar features of the School of Nursing at IU include:

Shadowing experience: As a nursing student at IU, you have the opportunity to observe nurses and other health professionals in action at the IU Health Bloomington Hospital.

Scholarships: If you need help financing your nursing degree, The School of Nursing can be an affordable option as it gives over $700,000 in scholarships to nursing students each year. The average grant ranges from $1,000 to $2,500.

Nursing Honors Program: As a nursing student at IU, you have the opportunity to apply to the Nursing Honors Program. If you have interest in conducting nursing research, consider this option.

Simulation Lab: IU’s nursing school hosts a top of the line simulation lab that mimics many of the real life situations you will encounter as a registered nurse. The simulation lab features two inpatient rooms, a Labor and Delivery space, as well as an ICU (Intensive Care Unit). Throughout your time at IU’s nursing program, you will use high fidelity manikins, “SIM” moms, newborns and children in order to learn complex medical procedures. There is a full time simulation lab technician that helps faculty create curriculum and learning exercises.

Awards: The National League for Nursing recognized the Indiana University School of Nursing as a “Center of Excellence in Nursing Education” for the years 2012-2017. This is the school’s third designation by this organization.

NCLEX pass rate: The May 2012 graduating class passed the NCLEX (National Council Licensure Examination) with a rate of 100 percent.

Rankings: Indiana University’s School of Nursing is rated 9th out of the 80 schools receiving funds from the National Institutes of Health. Meanwhile, U.S. News and World Report ranked IU’s School of Nursing #15 on their list of the best graduate programs in nursing.

The School of Nursing at Indiana University boasts award winning faculty, facilities and the larger educational community and resources of IUPUI. If you enroll in any of IU’s nursing programs, you will gain a world-class nursing education that makes you an asset in any health care environment in Indiana and beyond. 40 percent of Indiana nurses graduated from Indiana University’s School of Nursing. You can not argue with that type of loyalty and dedication to an institution of nursing education in the state of Indiana.

19. University of Iowa — Iowa City, IA

University of Iowa

The Advanced Technologies Laboratory

For the comprehensive nursing education in the Midwest, the University of Iowa College of Nursing offers a nationally recognized program in advanced clinical training and nursing leadership.

The University’s well recognized faculty ranks the College of Nursing as one of the best research institutions in the nation. Founded in 1898, the UI College of Nursing is a leader in the professional field of nursing. Our campus is a resource for practitioners, researchers and scientists.

Part of the Big 10 research campus, the UI College of Nursing is a clinical partner institution to the UI Hospitals and Clinics. The campus is also the first Magnet tertiary care hospital in the state. The campus maintains research partnerships with a number of prominent nonprofit institutes and federal administration in the healthcare and science fields toward the encouragement of interdisciplinary exchange and evidence based research reporting.

In 2013, the UI College of Nursing faculty and postdoctoral fellows were endowed with research and training funds, totaling approximately $38,001,506 in budgetary allocations, and $94,800,816 in investigative funds. Of those funds, nearly half are National Institute for Health (NIH) research grants, with the remainder funded by non-federal organizations and industry sponsors.

The robust economic position of the college translates into substantial opportunity for students. The College of Nursing is well-recognized for innovative best practices knowledge development and dissemination of researched findings in the nursing discipline.
The University is committed to advancing medical science and nursing care delivery through evidence based practice research in an effort to contribute to continuous improvement of health outcomes.

The University of Iowa is notable for its performance in educational excellence. The UI College of Nursing mission is to prepare the next generation of nursing leaders in the discovery of new medical information and dissemination and application of nursing knowledge in-process.

The dedication of UI College of Nursing to its community of nursing scholars is founded on meeting the health care needs of an increasingly global society. Training nursing practitioner for international employment is part of the goal to fulfill the vast nursing shortage worldwide.

The training students receive at UI College of Nursing is based on the operationalization of theory through diagnosis, treatment intervention and evaluation of patient outcomes. The nurse-patient relationship stands at the center of this objective, and extends the notion of ‘synergy’ to the establishment of collaborative medical decision and universal prevention of healthcare issues that may impact the health of patients, their families, communities, and the surrounding population.

BSN
The BSN program at the UI College of Nursing is part of the University’s premier undergraduate education. Students train in academic nursing theory combined with in-depth practice and extensive patient interaction. The BSN program allows for students to work toward their degree while participating in internship at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics (UIHC). BSN students have access to the University’s Nursing Clinical Education Center, offering training in clinical laboratory experimentation and testing required for complex medical specialty and clinical roles.

RN-BSN
The University of Iowa’s RN-BSN program is a blended option offered to students already employed as registered nurses. The RN-BSN program can be completed almost entirely online. The degree requires one practicum/clinical course with completion of face-to-face components for matriculation. On enrollment, the program places students at a practicum site in the State of Iowa, normally near the student’s residence. completion of a community and public health practicum course requires a valid Iowa nursing license.

The course was designed for associate degree level and diploma holding RNs who would like to proceed to graduate study. The program also benefits nursing practitioners through skill enhancement. The UI College of Nursing program is part of the school’s agenda to increase the number of BSN prepared nurses in the State of Iowa and nationwide by 2020.

MSN: CNL
The Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) program designed in coordination with American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) guidelines is a lead Master’s level nursing program that applies both academic and practice training. While the emphasis is on practice, the professional development of nurse leaders is an interdisciplinary process that requires collaboration of clinical, practice and managerial components.

CNL students can focus on development of professional clinical expertise in the interest of a career in quality care patient systems planning and oversight. The importance of the CNL role within healthcare institutions has made this program highly sought after. Performance analysis of demonstrated nursing effectiveness is continuous within the program. Students work toward improvement of personal and team outcomes during training.

DNP
The addition to the College of Nursing degree programs, the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program is a professional practice program instituted to advance skilled nursing experts in attaining personal and organizational goals. A preparatory program meant to educate clinicians with the latest in knowledge and skills in the field, the DNP is an executive degree that offers high-skills training for supervision of healthcare institution delivery. The program also provides a tract in ethics and policy development for governance of complex organizations.

PhD
The school also offers a PhD research degree to students considering training at the doctoral level. For more information, contact the College of Nursing.

The University of Iowa College of Nursing is an elite institution. UI graduates are more sought after than other skilled professionals in the healthcare sector. Nursing students can expect employment prior to degree completion. Professional affiliation ensures continued alumni support after matriculation.

If you are interested in application to one of the top nursing schools in the U.S., University of Iowa College of Nursing is one of the best nursing schools in the country. Accredited and licensed to provide comprehensive nursing programs, come to UI for your BSN, RN-BSN, MSN-CNL, Phd or DNP nursing degree.

Contact The University of Iowa College of Nursing to enroll in a nursing program. The international nursing field awaits.

20. University of Arizona — Tucson, AZ

Anthropologie

Poetry Center

For those looking to pursue a degree in nursing, the University of Arizona has been ranked as one of the top nursing schools in the country. Their main campus in Tucson, Arizona provides a convenient location for those seeking a nursing degree. With plenty of job opportunities, it’s no wonder why so many students choose the University of Arizona. As a public research institution, the University of Arizona is dedicated to providing its’ students with a superior education.

Founded in 1885, the University of Arizona is widely acclaimed for its nursing programs. With a low student to faculty ratio, prospective students can rest easy knowing they will receive an interactive education. The National Science Foundation ranked the University of Arizona #19 among all public universities. With more than 300 undergraduate and graduate degree programs, the University of Arizona continues to be a top pick when it comes to public institutions.

Students that attend the University of Arizona are in the company of some of the finest faculty available. From Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners to world-renowned experts, the University of Arizona has exceptional faculty that provide excellence in education.

The great part about choosing the nursing degree program is that the job outlook is fantastic! According to nursingjobs.org, “Arizona will have plenty of nursing jobs in the years to come. The growing population, along with a lack of nursing schools and a large number of people leaving the profession, has resulted in a critical nursing shortage in the state.” This is great news for anyone looking to pursue nursing in the state of Arizona! A shortage in nurses means hospitals are offering incentives for nurses. These incentives include financial bonuses as a means to attract more nurses.

The University of Arizona’s main campus in Tucson is located near numerous medical facilities. Tucson needs nurses to supply the city’s expanding population. Luckily, the University of Arizona offers both online and traditional nursing programs in order to make attaining a degree possible for everyone.

Sometimes, life gets in the way. Finding the time to make education a priority is a top issue amongst students. Whether they’re a single parent, full-time worker, or lack reliable transportation, many of our students opt for an online education. Online learning is the wave of the future because it offers a technologically advanced way to obtain a nursing degree.

On the other hand, a traditional nursing program offers plenty of advantages as well. With a stimulating environment that allows for face-to-face interaction, students can expect a more hand-on approach to their learning. Attending a classroom setting can also help to establish friendships amongst peers. In addition, a campus setting provides invaluable resources such as the library.

Students looking to pursue nursing should feel confident in choosing either option. Both online and traditional nursing programs will provide students with the education and training they need to succeed. Employers in Arizona seek job candidates who have completed their education; whether it be online or in a classroom setting. The most important aspect is whether or not the student has demonstrated the dedication that comes with completing their degree.

The University of Arizona’s cutting edge technology sets it apart from other four-year universities. As a college that centers itself on research, the University of Arizona features some of the best technology available. With world-class facilities that offer advanced mechanics, students have the ability to produce groundbreaking research. This offers opportunities that are unique to the University of Arizona.

The campus itself is 387 acres of beautiful scenery and architecture. Located in central Tucson, there are plenty of bars, restaurants, and shopping centers nearby. The eco-friendly campus offers magnificent landscaping that compliments the surrounding community.

Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, the University of Arizona has received recognition for its state of the art learning facilities. The University of Arizona is ranked #1 in the U.S and #2 in the world for Environmental Research. In 2013, U.S News and World Report ranked the university as #1 in geology graduate programs. In addition, they also ranked the University of Arizona as #1 for Management Information Systems among public graduate programs.

For the 2013-2014 calendar year, the tuition rate is $10,391 for in-state residents. For out-of-state residents, it’s $27,073. If these numbers do not seem affordable, do keep in mind that many students utilize some form of financial aid or scholarship fund. Speaking with a financial advisor is highly recommended for prospective students.

The University of Arizona’s College of Nursing offers numerous scholarship opportunities available within this program. Students are encouraged to fill out a general scholarship application. This application covers all scholarship opportunities.

In order to be eligible for the College of Nursing Awards, students must be a declared nursing major. In addition, students must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Lastly, students who wish to be considered must register through Scholarship Universe. Through Scholarship Universe, students can access other scholarship opportunities that are available outside of the University of Arizona.

The application deadline for the fall quarter is May 1. All paperwork, including test scores and personal essays, must be submitted by this date. In addition, there is a $50 non-refundable application fee. With an acceptance rate of 76.9%, admission can be rather competitive at times. Make sure to apply as early as possible to ensure all paperwork is submitted on time.

To speak with a College of Nursing representative, call (520)626-6154. To submit an application, visit http://admissions.arizona.edu/freshmen/steps-to-apply.

Get your career on the right path by applying to the nursing program at the University of Arizona!

21. Oregon Health and Science University — Portland, OR

Oregon Health and Science University

Peter O Kohler Pavilion

Oregon Health and Science University, located in beautiful Portland, Oregon, has been around since 1887. OHSU is a public university that has made a name for itself for being one of the leading research schools in the nation.

Investing in a nursing degree is Oregon is a sure investment in your future. There is currently a nursing shortage in Oregon and all over the US, and nurses are in very high demand. In addition to the several metropolitan hospitals in Portland and Salem, Oregon boasts many hospitals in more rural settings, surrounded by breathtaking scenery. The state capital, Salem, is home to Oregon State Hospital, highlighted by the popular book and movie One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.

OHSU offers a plethora of nursing programs both in residence and through distance learning. This top nursing school has five regional campuses throughout Oregon, and has a virtual classroom for students as well.

OHSU offers several nursing degree programs at its various facilities. For undergraduates, in addition to the Bachelors in Nursing, an accelerated Bachelors in Nursing is available. This program is completed in three years. Bachelor’s Degree programs are extremely competitive, with the average prerequisite GPA required for admission is a 3.89.

Graduate students have many options for continuing education at OHSU. Among the Masters programs offered are an accelerated Bachelors to Masters in either Midwifery or Psychiatric Mental Health. OHSU also offers a Family Nurse Practitioner’s Masters degree, Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Masters degree, Nurse Anesthesia, a Masters in Health Systems and Organization and a Nursing Education Masters Degree. OHSU also offers a Masters of Public Health and a Graduate Certificate in Public Health.

For nurses interested in Doctoral programs, OHSU offers a post Masters Doctorate of Nursing Practice, the highest degree offered in nursing. A Ph.D. in Nursing is also available at OHSU, it was the 28th such degree program offered in the US, and only the sixth program in the West. Approximately 40 Ph.D. students are enrolled in this research intensive Ph.D. program.

OHSU employs a highly qualified faculty and staff that are renowned in their fields of study. According to US News and World Report, Oregon Health Science University is consistently one of the best nursing schools in the nation. As of 2011, OHSU Nursing school was ranked seventh in the nation for overall nursing school performance. OHSU was ranked number one in Nurse Midwifery, fourth for Gerontological Nursing Programs and seventh for their Family Nurse Practitioner Program.

OHSU’s main nursing campus in Portland, Oregon is located on the 116 acre Marquam Hill area overlooking picturesque downtown Portland. The well known Marquam Hill is home to not only OHSU Nursing School, but also Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, Shriner’s Hospital, and the Portland VA Medical Center and OHSU’s Main Hospital. Each of these medical centers is well respected in their specialty community and it is a benefit that OHSU Nursing students have the opportunity to learn in an area of not only excellence, but medical practice diversity.

OHSU Nursing school is home to many well respected medical researchers. OHSU is in the top two percent of funding from the National Institutes of Health, (NIH) for nursing research grants, meaning that as a student there will be several more opportunities for involvement in nationally recognized research. Currently, OHSU Nursing school has over 45 active research grants from various institutions including the NIH and the American Cancer Society. Research topics at OHSU are vast, and researchers are making great discoveries in fields such as mechanisms and management of cancer related treatment and symptoms to breastfeeding following a Cesarean Section.

The Nursing school at OHSU is part of a brand new Interprofessional Initiatives program (IPI) that is revolutionizing patient care. The IPI program at OHSU is not limited to the Nursing School, but is Medical School wide and the focus is on creating team based, patient centered care for all OHSU patients. With this program, nursing students will learn what other health care professionals do in a unique way, and how to best work together to promote healing and client well being.

OHSU Nursing school is unique in that it offers many community partnerships, linking up students and hospitals all over the state of Oregon for their mutual benefit. This allows a nursing student to see many aspects of the profession before committing to a specific area or specialty, and allows them to decide upon the setting in which they prefer to work, be it metropolitan or rural, or somewhere in between.

OHSU medical community is well known for investing in local, underserved areas. Annually, OHSU School of Midwifery provide care for over 350 low income women and families during pregnancy and delivery. Additionally, the Nursing School developed a program called the Health Network for Rural Schools in Union County that serves families in five school districts, providing health care services to over 2,000 Oregon families. The Oregon State Department of Education is monitoring this program in hopes of replicating it in other rural areas. OHSU is clearly the leader is philanthropic effort to meet the needs of the entire population, not just those who are close to the main campus and can afford health care.

Oregon Health Sciences University is a great place to invest in your education. Not only is it consistently a top ranked medical university, but it is also known for working with students to accomplish their individual career goals. With locations throughout Oregon, OHSU is not only a great place for your education, but a great fit for your lifestyle as well.

22. University of Pittsburgh — Pittsburgh, PA

University of Pittsburgh

Cathedral of Learning

Technological advances and the ongoing demand for quality healthcare ensure that nursing is a job with a future. To give yourself the best possible start on a career in the nursing field, you’ll want to choose a quality school for your nursing degree. The University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing consistently ranks among the best.

Founded in 1939, the school’s first dean, Ruth Kuehn, was the first such dean to hold a doctorate. Located in the Oakland section of downtown Pittsburgh, the school has resided in the four-story Victoria building since 1978. Residential students live in a dormitory across from the building. With the university tucked into the heart of the vibrant city, students can avail themselves of numerous cultural and educational opportunities in Pittsburgh.

As one of the top nursing schools in the country, almost half of the full-time faculty at Pitt holds national organization leadership roles, ensuring vigorous scholarship and effective mentoring. The school holds national accreditation for its Bachelor of Nursing (BSN), Master of Nursing (MSN), and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degrees via the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, with the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Education Programs accrediting the graduate and doctoral programs in Nurse Anesthesia.

Across the country, the general job outlook for nursing is strong, with employment for RNs expected to grow at a faster than average rate through 2020, partly due to the aging of the baby boomer generation. With many experienced nurses retiring later, it can be challenging for newer nurses to get a foot in the door, though having at least an associate’s degree and keeping up with pertinent certifications in your specific field often improves your job outlook. The good news is that nursing care is always needed somewhere, and there is a diversity of job opportunities in hospitals as well as other kinds of healthcare facilities. According to Health Education Solutions, there were over 10,000 new hires in Pennsylvania nursing in the first quarter of 2011. University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing holds an annual career fair, each November, where those nearing graduation can meet potential employers and submit resumes.

Three academic departments make up the University of Pittsburgh Nursing School: Acute/Tertiary Care, Health and Community Systems and Health Promotion and Development. Undergraduate and graduate courses are offered in the various areas leading to several potential degrees. The school grants the BSN, MSN, DNP and PhD degrees. In addition to the traditional four year BSN, there is an accelerated 2nd degree BSN for those who already hold a bachelor’s degree in another area but wish to study nursing. Entrance into the undergraduate program is challenging, since 56 percent of the freshmen students come from the top ten percent of their high school graduating classes. But 94% of those who graduate with a BSN pass their licensing exam the first time through, so the rigor of the program is worth it.

The DNP program works to prepare nurses for either a clinical or systems (administration) focus. For nurses interested in entering academics, there are tracks that will allow students to work from both the BSN and MSN degrees up through a PhD.

The school is also accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education for professional nurses in the local area who want to keep up their credentials and stay abreast of current learning.

An acclaimed faculty is one of the things that sets University of Pittsburgh apart as one of the best nursing schools. Almost a full quarter of the faculty are Fellows within the American Academy of Nursing, and 93% are “doctorally prepared,” according to the school’s website. Ranked 7th in U.S. News and World Report’s listing of best graduate schools in the country, they also hold the distinction of ranking 9th in that magazine’s list of best online learning opportunities.

Another important distinction for Pitt is the fact that it ranks 3rd in research dollars from the National Institutes of Health. The school is considered an innovative research institution and has received the designation of a “Research Intensive Environment” from the National Institute of Nursing Research.

One of the exciting annual events sponsored by the school is the Cameo of Caring Program and Awards benefit. This program was established to recognize nurses within western Pennsylvania and commend them for their excellence and professionalism. Over 60 healthcare institutions participated in the last program, and almost 700 nurses have been awarded since the program was first established. The program has also raised funds and given out scholarships to 180 deserving students so far.

Academic rigor, research innovation and ongoing recognition of the value of nurses all contribute to the enriching environment of University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing. All of this is packaged in an exciting and culturally vigorous urban environment.

23. Yale University — New Haven, CT

Yale University

Health Services Center

The Yale School of Nursing was founded in 1923 and was a ground breaking model in the field of medical education because it focused on providing direct education to nursing students. Prior to the foundation of the Yale School of Nursing, the field of nursing required nursing candidates to complete an apprenticeship program.

Since it’s inception Yale’s nursing school has grown into one of the top nursing schools in operation today. At Yale nurses would learn how to provide care in their own ways. Previously, they had been relegated to learning by filling the roles of assistants to already practicing nurses. So if you are in search of the best nursing schools to complete a nursing degree, then be sure to review the nursing programs that are offered at Yale.

Located in Orange, Connecticut, the Yale School of Nursing provides a number of nursing programs to qualified candidates. Both full-time and part-time options are available depending on the desired ends of the student. However, this school is only available for graduate level students and does not offer any courses at undergraduate levels.

The undergraduate programs that the Yale School of Nursing does offer include a PhD program, a Doctorate program, a Masters program, and Graduate Entry Pre-Specialty courses. Certain qualifications will have to be met depending upon the program that an individual wishes to enter into.

The institution of Yale itself was independently founded as a private institution of higher learning in 1701. There are currently 85 faculty members working within the Yale School of Nursing, 15 of whom are tenured. As of today there are a total of 324 students in attendance.

Yale’s nursing school is accredited by the following institutions: Commission of Collegiate Nursing Education, American College of Nurse Midwives, Pediatric Nursing Certification Board, and the Connecticut State Board of Nurse Examiners.

In keeping with today’s increasingly mobile society the Yale School of Nursing offers online and hybrid courses. However these courses are directed towards Registered Nurses who wish to complete a Masters in a Nursing Management, Policy and Leadership. These online courses do require students to make monthly visits to the physical campus of the Nursing School’s location, and are specifically geared towards a specific area of targeted learning.

The Yale School of Nursing is a great place to pursue graduate level programs and should be considered over other schools for a number of reasons. Some of the things that make Yale the best choice over other schools include the teaching staff, the diversity of the student and faculty populations, the quality of the academic programs offered, and the programs themselves.

Yale has a great deal of resources that are available for students, which ensures hands on learning experience that is guided by experts within the field of nursing. The variety of experiences held by the faculty guarantees that students have the opportunities to learn as much as they possibly can throughout as many aspects of the nursing field as they desire.

The facilities under the direction of the Yale School of Nursing include community clinics. Students are assured of the experience and training of those who are teaching them because the faculty itself works in and operates these clinics. In addition to these clinics there are a number of other programs that keep those involved with Yale’s Nursing School involved in the surrounding community and the world at large.

The education courses provided at Yale are kept up to date and current with the latest trends and technologies introduced in today’s medical communities. The combination of tradition and keeping up with modern advancements means that student’s will receive a well rounded experience at Yale. There is a large number of clinical resources available to Yale student’s that other institutions of learning do not or can not offer in one convenient location.

Within the school there are also a number of ongoing and currently funded research projects. The purposes of these research studies help to increase the knowledge of certain areas of medicine, including specific diseases and disorders. These research opportunities have far reaching effects on the worldwide medical community. The education that a student receives at Yale has major implications in regards to the world of medicine.

Yale is a famed and celebrated institution of higher learning. Information regarding history, current activities, and accolades can be found in a number of national and international publications. There is a great deal of publicity and news that has been made available about Yale over the years. Stories and mentions of Yale can be found in reputable news sources such as Time Magazine, as well as a great deal of other publications including magazines, news papers, and books.

If you are considering furthering your education in the field of nursing, be sure to do some research into the Yale School of Nursing. There is no reason to sell yourself short, and to be the best you will want to learn from the best. Yale is one of the places that can truly equip you to experience and live up to your full potential as a medical care provider in the field of Nursing.

To find more information regarding Yale and the courses of study that are offered simply do a web search and you will find everything conveniently located on Yale’s own website.

24. University of Illinois-Chicago — Chicago, IL

UI Chicago

College of Medicine Research Building

Located in the heart of one of the greatest cities in the world, the University of Illinois at Chicago is internationally recognized as one of the major public research universities to offer students a world-class education. First founded in 1913, UIC has quickly grown to become the largest university in the Chicago metropolitan area with more than 27,580 students enrolled in 15 distinct academic colleges, including the nation’s largest medical school. According to the 2014 edition of the U.S. News and World Report survey, UIC is ranked as the 128th best college and 63rd top public school in the nation. The university is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, as well as a member of the prestigious Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU). As a truly diverse and global institution that is among the most diverse in the United States, more than one-third of its student body speaks English as a second language.

The University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing is comprised of three departments, including Biobehavioral Health Science, Health Systems Science, and Women, Children, and Family Health Science. Established in 1951 as an autonomous unit of the university, the College of Nursing became the first public institution in the state of Illinois to offer a nursing program leading to a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing. In 1986, it made history again by becoming the first designated World Health Organization (WHO) Collaborating Center for Nursing and Midwifery Development in the United States. Today, the College enrolls more than 1,300 nursing students each year to add to its already immense alumni network of 11,000 nurses. As a respected member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), the College of Nursing programs are fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics May 2012 records, there are 114,730 jobs for registered nurses in the state of Illinois. In other words, for every 1,000 jobs in the state, 20.34 are in a profession related to nursing or a nursing specialty. As population continues to increase throughout the state’s metropolitan areas, there is expected to be an increasing need for qualified nurses in Illinois. Although employment for registered nurses (RNs) is only expected to rise by 0.9 percent, it is predicted that jobs for nurse practitioners (NPs) will rapidly grow by 2.3 percent and nurse anesthetist jobs will grow even faster at 3.8 percent. In Illinois, registered nurses also enjoy an average annual salary of $66,260, which is equivalent to a mean hourly wage of $31.86.

Whether students are seeking an undergraduate degree to become a registered nurse (RN) or are seeking further career development to become an advanced practice nurse, it is guaranteed that the UIC College of Nursing has an educational program to meet all students’ nursing needs. Through a variety of convenient delivery modes, the nursing programs are all based on a high-quality curriculum of contemporary, evidence-based learning. The following are the different nursing programs that the College of Nursing offers to students at all levels of their career.

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) – The UIC College of Nursing offers two direct routes to completing a BSN degree, depending on past nursing experience. For students who do not hold an RN license, the traditional on-campus BSN program consists of four full-time semesters in a student’s junior and senior years. Students who already hold a valid RN license can enter the fully online RN to BSN program to complete their bachelor’s degree.
  • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) – Designed to help students become an advanced practice nurse (APN), the UIC MSN program if offered in a unique blended format with online courses, video-conferencing across all campuses, and scheduled in-person meetings. Although the program is highly flexible, most students complete the program in two to four years with a specialty concentration.
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) – The DNP program is offered to prepare nursing students for the highest level of clinical nursing practice in direct care roles as nurse practitioners or clinical nurse specialists, as well as health system roles in public health or nurse administration.
  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Nursing – With two specific routes of entry as Post-Baccalaureate and Post-Master’s, the PhD in Nursing program emphasizes strong mentoring relationships as students engage in cutting edge research to prepare a required dissertation research project.

Undoubtedly one of the best nursing schools in the United States, the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing has been ranked as the 11th overall best nursing college. The College’s programs have also been ranked as the 6th in Clinical Nurse Specialist, 16th in Family Nurse Practitioner, 15th in Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, 7th in Nursing Service Administration, and 5th for Nursing Midwifery in the nation. One of the prominent reasons for these tremendous rankings is the award-winning faculty that provides exceptional nursing education. One-third of the faculty members are American Academy of Nursing (AAN) fellows, while six have been designated as AAN Living Legends. Furthermore, 15 faculty members serve on Boards of Directors and 13 serve on International Advisory Boards. With such talented, accomplished instructors, the College is able to continually create preeminent nursing leaders to advance global public health.

Students in the programs offered by the UIC College of Nursing gain unparalleled exposure to excellence in teaching, practice, and research. Students engage in hands-on experience from the on-campus clinics and medical centers that have been designated as Edge-Runners by the American Academy of Nursing. The College is also home for two well-respected research facilities throughout the nation, the Center for Narcolepsy, Sleep, and Health Research and the Center for End-of-Life Transition Research. For students pursuing a specialization to become a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM), the advanced practice nurses gain the unique chance to manage the AVIVA Women’s Health and Midwifery clinic on campus too. In addition, the College of Nursing is consistently named as one of the 10 top nursing schools to receive funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

25. University of Maryland-Baltimore — Baltimore, MD

University of Maryland-Baltimore

Health Sciences & Human Services Library

The University of Maryland School of Nursing (UMSON) is a top-ranking, public accredited nursing program located in downtown Baltimore, MA. The School, which was founded in 1889, enrolls more than 1,700 students and is one of the largest in the nation. According to U.S. News & World Report, “UMSON is ranked 11th among all nursing schools nationally.”

UMSON offers a wide variety of on-campus nursing programs including Baccalaureate, Master of Science and Doctoral programs, as well as 24 Web-based courses relating to a variety of degree options.

It shares a 61-acre campus with six other University of Maryland professional schools: Law, Medicine, Social Work, Pharmacy, Dentistry and the Graduate School. In addition to its downtown Baltimore campus, the school also hosts classes in Rockville, MD, at the University of Maryland regional center at Shady Grove.

As the largest nursing school in Maryland, graduates of UMSON make up 40% of Maryland’s nurse workforce. This means the school plays an active role in placing alumni in the top state nursing jobs, and that recruiters frequently hire from the school’s graduating class. The wide variety of programs offered means that graduates of the nursing school go on to hold all kinds of healthcare positions.

According to the school’s 2013 Annual “State of the School” Report, the nation has seen a 93% growth in the number of Registered Nurse (RN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) programs in the last five years, signifying the growing importance of BSN programs. As a result, UMSON has focused heavily on growing their RN to BSN program, so they can continue to produce high-demand, quality nurses. By 2020, the field expects that 80% of nurses will have a baccalaureate degree or higher, making own UMSON’s baccalaureate program highly desirable and helpful for finding post-graduate employment.

For those seeking to obtain a nursing degree, UMSON offers several options. The undergraduate program confers a BSN degree with two options, one for those who do not have a previous degree and one for those who already have their RN degree and are now looking to obtain their BSN.

Graduate study options are varied and many chances for interdisciplinary and customized areas of study. At the Master’s level, the school offers several specialized Master’s degrees, a degree in Clinical Nurse Leadership (CNL), the RN to MS degree, and several post-graduate options, such as certification in Environmental Health, Global Health, Nursing Informatics, and Teaching in Nursing in Health Professions. At the doctoral level, the school offers a PhD program, a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), and a Post-BSN/Entry Level to DNP tract.

In addition to offering classes on the Maryland campus, the UMSON also offers several online programs in nursing, via the Southern Regional Education Board’s Electronic Campus. Students who enroll in the online program can elect several different tracts. For undergraduates, the school confers an online degree in the RN-BSN Nursing Program. Online studies are also offered for several graduate programs. Students in graduate programs can enroll in certificate programs, practice core classes, and receive additional support for physical, on-campus courses.

What sets UMSON apart from other top nursing schools in the country? For starters, the excellent location. The school’s proximity to Washington, DC and its location in downtown Baltimore means that students are poised to find a variety of clinical placements and opportunities to participate in both cultural and policy-related initiatives. They also have access to an overwhelming amount of cultural opportunities, ethnic foods, and entertainment options.

The region boasts a diverse urban community as well easy access to bucolic vistas and outdoor activities—the surrounding Southern Anne Arundel County features ocean views and fresh seafood, while the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains are only a 2 hour care ride away. Additionally, the beaches of Maryland and Delaware are accessible via a 2.5 hour car ride, and cities such as New York and Philly are easily reached by bus.

The school’s central location means that UMSON is well-connected to other universities and educational programs in the region, and collaborates with other institutions frequently. The school maintains affiliations with “more than 300 hospitals and health care entities throughout Maryland,” and also belongs to baltimorecollegetown.org network, an alliance of regional institutions that provides cultural events, shuttles, and services to students in the Baltimore region. Students can find use the service to find rides to other area universities, attend free lectures, meet other students, and learn about cultural happenings. This means that UMSON students are poised to meet and form friendship (and job prospects) at countless area hospitals, clinics, and universities.

State-of-the-art facilities and cutting edge clinical simulation opportunities illustrate why UMSON has risen to the 11th ranking of U.S. News & World Report’s list of best national nursing schools. The school features a 154,000 square-foot building in Baltimore, and offers 24 clinical stimulation laboratories throughout the various campuses. These labs, known as the Debra L. Spunt Clinical Stimulation Labs, “replicate realistic practice settings, including basic hospital, critical care, surgical/operating room, pediatrics, neonatal maternity, home care, and health assessment settings.” They provide one-of-a-kind, student-tailored teaching.

The school boasts a variety of collaborative outreach initiatives, positioning themselves area as a leading partner in DC/Baltimore-area healthcare. These partnerships range in scope, from hosting visiting lecturers and professional education modules (The Komen Maryland Affiliate Nursing Partnership) to providing clinical sites and practical experience at local area hospitals (MedStar Health). The school also prepares its students for success by staying active in local community service healthcare projects. For example, the Governor’s Wellmobile Program, founded in 1994, is “a model of mobile, nurse-managed primary health care designed to serve uninsured and underserved populations thorough Maryland.” These types of initiatives set UMSON apart from other programs by providing real-world clinical experience and by emphasizing the importance of community service and healthcare in underserved communities nationwide.

UMSON also distinguishes itself as one of the nation’s best nursing schools by focusing on interdisciplinary research opportunities and by collaborating with the six other professional schools on the Baltimore campus. This means that nursing faculty and students interact with the Law, Medicine, Social Work, Pharmacy, Dentistry and Graduate Schools to develop cutting edge, interdisciplinary research initiatives.

26. Case Western Reserve University — Cleveland, OH

Case Western Reserve University

Peter B Lewis Building

Case Western Reserve University, located in Cleveland, Ohio has a long history of distinction as a center for academic research and education. One of the top nursing schools in the country, the school lies in the midst of a 500 acre park, where its 40 educational, cultural, medical and religious institutions are within easy access for students. The Frances Payne School of Nursing was established in 1923, and has held a long history of distinction among nursing schools across the nation ever since.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics performs extensive research in the area of careers in the United States. According to the latest research, career opportunities in the field of nursing are expected to increase by 26 percent during the period of time from 2010 to 2020. This is much higher than the average growth rate expected in other careers. This rate of growth is due to changes in the medical care system that will emphasize preventive care as well as the medical needs of an aging population.

The job outlook for nurses and other medical personnel in the state of Ohio is expected to continue to grow, offering numerous opportunities for employment and advancement for nursing professionals.

Frances Payne School of Nursing offers a four year degree in order to achieve a bachelor of science in nursing degree. The school also offers numerous specialties in its master’s program so students can tailor their educational interests and structure their clinical practice to develop their career path in a specific area of practice. Frances Payne School of Nursing also offers doctoral programs for students seeking advanced degrees.

The Frances Payne School of Nursing has always been a forward-thinking university program, staying on the cutting edge of nursing practice. The school developed the very first practice doctorate in nursing as well as the first program for acute care nurse practitioners. It is also home to the advanced practice flight nurse program, the first in the country.

Case Western Reserve University received a ranking of #38 out of 280 universities in the 2012 ranking done by US News & World Report. It is rated as the best post-high school educational facility in the state of Ohio as well.

The Nursing School at Case Western Reserve University received a ranking of #15 out of over 400 masters programs across the US, making Frances Payne School of Nursing one of the best nursing schools in the country. The specialized area of gerontology was rated #5 in the nation, with nurse anesthesia ranking 11th and nurse midwifery ranking 17th.

For students interested in pursuing a nursing degree, the Frances Payne School of Nursing is a top flight program, recognized internationally for its excellence. The school houses one of only 10 World Health Organization Collaborating Centers in the United States. Its faculty members are leaders in the medical community, with numerous awards and achievements to their credit.

Students have almost instant access to premier medical facilities for their clinical practice coursework and other opportunities. The four medical institutions that are directly involved with the school’s various nursing programs include the renowned University Hospitals Case Medical Center, a leading center of biomedical research. Students will also have the option of working with the Cleveland Clinic, the largest hospital in the state. They will further have access to MetroHealth Medical Center, which features a burn unit and specialty work with spinal cord injury victims as well as the Louis Stokes VA Medical Center.

The nursing school at Frances Payne offers student a very unique opportunity to get intimately involved with patient care from practically the moment they step onto campus. Frances Payne puts students into clinical practice during the third week of school, and students at Frances Payne log almost twice the normal clinical hours of any other students in nursing programs across the US. Experience matters when searching for a job in this competitive field, and students who graduate from Frances Payne have an advanced amount of varied medical experience that will enable them to come to the job market with a desirable set of skills and experience.

Accreditation at Case Western Reserve University includes:

  • Accreditation by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Higher Learning Commission
  • Accreditation by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education for the DNP program
  • Accreditation by the ACNM Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education for the nurse midwifery program
  • Accreditation by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Education Programs for the nurse anesthesia program
  • Accreditation by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc. for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) programs

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
This program prepares students for future careers in the nursing profession in hospital settings, private medical practice settings, nonprofit agencies and more.

Master of Science in Nursing (MSN)
This program prepares future nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, nurses desiring to work in the field of midwifery, and other specialty areas.

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
This program provides a career leadership path for students interested in administration and research, as well as advanced nursing practice.

Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (PhD)
This program prepares students for work as researchers or faculty members at universities and colleges across the United States.
Dual Doctorate DNP/PhD Program; this joint program prepares students for a future as clinical researchers and faculty members at nursing schools. It also prepares students for a career in health care administration.

The school’s mission is to endow students with a world class education by providing tools such as access to cutting edge technology and innovative research opportunities, a vast knowledge base predicated upon extensive clinical experience at local medical facilities, and a mindset of entering the work community with a dedication to improving the quality of nursing care available to individuals in need of medical care.

27. Rush University — Chicago, IL

Rush University

Rush University Medical Center

Situated on a beautiful eight-acre campus on the west side of Chicago in the Illinois Medical District, Rush University is a private institution dedicated solely to the health sciences of Medicine, Nursing, Allied Health, and Biomedical Research. First founded in 1972, the university has quickly expanded to encompass four distinct colleges with more than 2,100 students. It is an academic arm of the Rush University Medical Center, which has ranked 5th among all academic medical centers by the University Health System Consortium and ranked within the top 50 hospitals in the nation by the U.S. News and World Report. Rush University is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Rush University is among the most respected health sciences schools and is considered a prominent supplier of physicians in the Midwest.

The Rush University College of Nursing is uniquely affiliated with a major medical center to focus on the main priority of delivering quality hands-on training in patient care. Established in 1972 with the initiation of the university itself, the College of Nursing has a long legacy of awarding more than 6,000 graduate master’s and doctoral degrees. It currently enrolls 965 total nursing students on all academic levels from 37 states nationwide. In 2009, the Rush College of Nursing was granted the maximum re-accreditation term of 10 years from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). The main mission of the College is to protect overall public health by preparing exceptional future nursing leaders for roles in practice, research, and education.

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics records from May 2012, there are a total of 114,730 jobs for registered nurses in Illinois. For every 1,000 jobs in the state’s borders, 20.34 were in an occupation related to nursing or a nursing specialty. With the current national shortage of nurses and the aging baby boomer population, qualified and trained registered nurses are expected to continue to be in high-demand in Illinois. While the location quotient for the field is currently 1.01, there is expected to be a 0.9 percent increase for Registered Nurses (RNs) from 2010 to 2020. Employment for Nurse Practitioners (NPs) will continue to grow by 2.3 percent and jobs for Certified Nurse Anesthetists (CNAs) is predicted to rapidly grow by 2.8 percent. In Illinois, nurses earn an average yearly salary of $66,260, or a mean hourly wage of $31.86.

As one of the best nursing schools in the nation, the Rush University College of Nursing specializes in offering students advanced practice nursing programs for graduate degrees. The following are the accredited program options that are provided to nursing students by the Rush College of Nursing.

  • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) – Within the two-year MSN degree program, the College offers all courses to be taken online and enables students to fulfill all clinical residency requirements at their local place of employment. Students with an RN or BSN are eligible to enroll in the MSN program on either a Generalist or Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL) career track. Students engage in coursework on advanced physiology, health economics, health assessment, pharmacology, and organizational leadership.
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) – Depending on previous nursing experience, students can enter the DNP program with a BSN or an MSN degree. Enrolled students are required to select a nursing specialty of Acute or Primary Adult Gerontology, Family, Neonatal, Acute or Primary Pediatric, Psychiatric-Mental Health, Nurse Anesthesia, Public Health, or Systems Leadership. After completion, graduates can hold the qualifications of being a NP, CNS, CRNA, or APHN.
  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Nursing Science – As the highest level of achievement in the graduate nursing field, the PhD in Nursing Science program is designed to prepare students for careers in academia or clinical research. The program is only open for BSN and MSN nurses, so non-nurses who hold a graduate degree in another health-related field cannot be considered for acceptance.

Among the 467 nursing colleges in the United States, the 2014 edition of the U.S. News and World Report survey ranks the Rush University College of Nursing as the 15th best in the nation. For the various nursing specialties, the College ranks as 4th for Clinical Nurse Specialist, 7th for Adult Nurse Practitioner, 19th for Family Nurse Practitioner, 7th for Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, 5th for Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, and 3rd for Nurse Anesthetist training. Since Rush is also the only nationally recognized university that is exclusively focused on health sciences, graduates are sought after by prospective employers in the field from the exceptional clinical and nursing leadership education.

The Rush College of Nursing understands that students learn best when they are involved in a dynamic environment with seamlessly integrated teaching, research experience, and clinical practice. More than 75 percent of the faculty members possess a doctoral degree in nursing, participate in current research studies with student assistance, and are fellows of the prestigious American Academy of Nursing. With a small average class size, students also receive the necessary attention and interaction with the award-winning faculty members to prosper learning. As a result, the College boasts significantly higher pass rates for Registered Nurse (RN) licensure and Advanced Practice Nurse (APN) certification examinations than the national average.

Although Rush University is undoubtedly home to one of the top nursing schools, the tuition remains extremely appealing to students seeking a world-class nursing education. The College is committed to keeping the tuition costs down, without compromising on the high-quality of the education being delivered. Since the length of the programs are efficient and can be customized to suit students’ goals, students pay considerably less in tuition than at the other ranked nursing schools. Even better, many of the programs can be completed fully online with the same qualified faculty to accommodate all students and their diverse lifestyles.

28. Vanderbilt University — Nashville, TN

Vanderbilt University

Monroe Carell, Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt

Located in the heart of Music City in downtown Nashville, Tennessee, Vanderbilt University is a private institution comprised of four undergraduate and six graduate schools. First founded in 1873 by Cornelius Vanderbilt, the university has grown to become of the premier universities on the globe offering students a world-class liberal arts education. Vanderbilt is currently ranked as the 17th best college and 11th best value school in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. Although the school is home for 6,796 students, the university has retained a small student to faculty ratio of 8:1, with more than 63 percent of its classes having fewer than 20 students. As an excellent indicator of student satisfaction, the average freshmen retention rate is 96.3 percent. Vanderbilt is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, as well as a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities.

Standing proudly in Godchaux Hall, the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing (VUSN) has a long-lasting reputation for excellence in teaching, practice, informatics, and research with its roots tracing all the way back to 1908. As one of the top nursing schools and pioneers for nursing education paving the way for institutions of higher learning, Vanderbilt was one of the first five schools in the United States to receive funding from the Rockefeller Foundation. VUSN is well-respected for being among the most progressive in the nation with cutting-edge research and breakthrough support technologies. The School of Nursing is fully accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) and approved by the Tennessee Board of Nursing.

According to the May 2012 records from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 55,580 jobs for registered nurses in Tennessee. For every 1,000 jobs in the state, 20.91 jobs were in nursing and nursing specialty professions. As the baby boomer population continues to age and the state endures a shortage of qualified nursing professionals, it is expected that an increased number of jobs will need to be filled by nursing degree holders. Although employment for registered nurses is only predicted to grow by 0.7 percent, jobs for nurse anesthetists is predicted to rapidly grow by 4.3 percent and those for nurse midwives is going to skyrocket by 15.5 percent by 2020. In Tennessee, registered nurses earn an average yearly salary of $55,800, which is equivalent to a mean hourly wage of $26.83.

As the health care industry continues to evolve, advanced practice nurses are quickly becoming more in-demand and vital members of the professional medical team. Therefore, the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing is committed to offering nationally recognized advanced practice nursing programs to help prepare students to become practice-focused nurse scholars who will make an impact in the field. The following are the nursing programs that are available for students who already possess a valid RN license and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).

  • Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) – Designed to prepare skilled and experienced advance practice nurses, the MSN program has multiple entry options for registered nurses and non-nurses, as well as advanced specialties tailored to student interests. Through distributed course delivery, MSN program students can choose from flexible formats and online learning options.
  • Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) – Specially accredited by the Accreditation for Education in Nursing (ACEN), the Doctor of Nursing Practice program is a three-year doctorate program for MSN students who are interested in advancing their care delivery. The program is conducted through a seamless combination of on-campus study and online distance learning.
  • PhD in Nursing Science – Offered to students online, the PhD in Nursing Science is a distance program that is designed to prepare nursing scholars for careers in academia and research. Students in the program conduct hands-on research experience that directly responds to the regional, national, and international priorities in the field to compile a dissertation.
  • Post-Master’s Certificate for MSN – With the post-master’s study program, MSN nurses have the ability to specialize in a specific area of nursing, including nurse practitioner, health systems management, nursing informatics, nurse midwifery, and nurse educator.
  • Postdoctoral Nursing Program – In the two-year Postdoctoral program, fellows have the unique chance to advance their research career by working alongside faculty mentors to participate in seminars, programs, research, special projects, and other nursing activities with the Vanderbilt Medical Center.

Although the Vanderbilt University School of Nursing currently only offers graduate programs, VUSN and Belmont University have recently combined efforts to launch a cohort program for students who are interested in transitioning from an RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree. While the program just began in spring of 2013 and is still undergoing a pilot phase, the objective of the RN to BSN program is to help full-time working students return to school for further achievement in nursing.

The Vanderbilt University School of Nursing is nationally recognized as the 15th best nursing school in the nation by U.S. News and World Report. It is also ranked for numerous nursing specialties, including 9th for clinical nurse specialist, 13th for nurse practitioner, 10th for family nurse practitioner, 8th for nursing service administration, and 3rd for nursing midwifery. VUSN is also renowned for having one of the largest male nursing faculties in the nation, with 35 full and part-time faculty members being male.

With more than 100 years of history serving as a leading institution of nursing education, the VU School of Nursing is renowned for its high-quality programs, stellar expert faculty, scholarly research activity, and clinical experience second to none. Students in all of the graduate nursing programs highly benefit from unparalleled practicum/internship experiences in the Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), a highly-acclaimed teaching hospital that is distinguished for its groundbreaking discoveries in electronic medical records. The VUMC is ranked as the 15th best hospital in America by U.S. News and World Report and one of the 100 best companies to work for by Fortune magazine.

29. Arizona State University — Phoenix, AZ

ASU

Grady Gammage Auditorium

Nursing education is about first class facilities and a great faculty. The College of Nursing and Health Innovation at Arizona State University offers a variety of fully accredited programs staffed by distinguished faculty. Their decades of experience and commitment make ASU a leader in the nursing education field. The College of Nursing and Health Innovation at Arizona State University was founded in 1957 and is one of the best nursing schools in the country. It is part of the ASU downtown Phoenix campus.

The College of Nursing and Health Innovation has grown over the years. Architecturally, the buildings in the new downtown campus are an urban retrofit with campus buildings mixed with commercial and retail buildings. ASU’s downtown campus has integrated the old Phoenix Post Office for reuse as a campus building. The school of Nursing and Health Innovation share the downtown campus with five other colleges under the ASU banner.

ASU is an enormous university. Over 25,000 freshmen gain admission every year, and the student body numbers almost 75,000. Geographically, ASU is spread out over five campuses in the Phoenix community.

The College of Nursing and Health Innovation offers a 4-year program, a Masters program and a Doctorate program and has seen high enrollment lately. The student to faculty ratio is 23 to 1 at ASU. The School of Nursing and Health Innovation has over 160 faculty members. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education grants their accreditation and all programs are approved by the Arizona Board of Nursing.

Any student must ask the obvious question: will there be nursing jobs available in the state when I graduate? Healthcare in Arizona is traditionally a strong sector that many believe will be adding jobs in the future. An aging population in need of healthcare and the prospects that the Affordable Care Act represents makes people optimistic. Universal coverage should lead to more job creation.

In a highly competitive marketplace like healthcare, it is important to get the right degrees and certification that employers are looking for. It’s also important to pursue opportunities to network with health professionals, fellow students and faculty. Many believe they should pursue internships to get a foot in the door of this profession.

Arizona State offers traditional 4-year degrees, graduate degrees, doctoral degrees and a post doctoral programs and is offering hybrid and concurrent online educational programs in the 4-year and graduate nursing degree programs. The online offerings are both part of traditional programs and independent nursing programs. The online features include multi-media presentations, asynchronous discussion boards and live chats. Depending on the program, students may need to travel to a classroom or a face-to-face meeting with faculty may be required.

The ASU commitment to research means that innovative technology and infrastructure will be found on the ASU campus. It has excellent facilities like the Flexible Display Center, the Noble Science Library, the Ross Blakely Library and more. The trophy case at ASU is full. The faculty includes Nobel Laureates, Fulbright Scholars, National Academy members and members of the National Institutes of Health. Arizona State University School of Nursing and Health Innovation’s downtown campus is housed in the impressive downtown campus, with many opportunities to interact with the greater Phoenix community.

Nursing research centers include the Center for Healthy Families Research, the Center for Healthy Outcomes in Aging, the Center for Translational Health Science and the Hartford Center for Gerontological Nursing Excellence. ASU has one of the top nursing schools in the country.

ASU also has intercollegiate centers like the Center for Metabolic and Vascular Biology, the Center for World Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, the Healthcare Transformation Institute and the Office of Clinical Partnerships.

With a tremendous reputation as a research institution, ASU offers students great opportunities to learn and grow. The museums and libraries have impressive collections. ASU has state-of-the-art scientific and technological laboratories and research facilities.

The excellent faculty at the College of Nursing and Health Innovation include many fellows of groups like the American Academy of Nursing, the National Academies of Practice, the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and the NLN Academy of Nursing Education Fellows. The faculty and students have won numerous awards including the Child Immunization Champion Award, Sigma Theta Tau funding for research proposals and many more.

The ASU School of Nursing and Health Innovation is a learner-centered program to educate professional nurses. Students are valued for their individual strengths and diverse viewpoints. The faculty is committed to the student’s experience and growth across disciplines and within the college community. They believe in life-long learning habits. They also value the experience students get in the greater community.

US News & World Report have ranked ASU number two among up and coming universities for making the most promising and innovative changes in the areas of academics, faculty and student life. They also listed the ASU undergraduate programs at 73rd among public universities. Forbes included ASU in its list of “America’s Best College Buys.”

ASU has always been committed to diversity. Insight into Diversity Magazine announced that Arizona State was among the recipients of the 2013 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award. ASU is known for its model campus life. They want to be measured “by those it includes and how they succeed, not by those it excludes.”

ASU’s college level sports offer much entertainment and excitement. The Sun Devils have won numerous national championships across the sports fields. If you’re looking for a large academic institution experience with a great school environment, and a school committed to diversity and high standards, then the ASU College of Nursing and Health Innovation is for you. ASU offers a strong living and learning environment. Because the School of Nursing is located in downtown Phoenix, there are many opportunities for off-campus forays in dining and entertainment.

30. Boston College — Chestnut Hill, MA

Boston College

Gasson Hall

Boston College is a prestigious institution located in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. The college was established in 1859, with a nursing college being added in the mid-1940s. The establishment of the nursing college was a welcome innovation in the community, and the William F. Connell School of Nursing has made innovation and leadership two of its hallmarks ever since.

Initially, the school offered only a baccalaureate degree. By 1958, a master’s level program had been added, while a Ph.D. program was established in 1988. Almost since its founding, the institution has been recognized as one of the top nursing schools in the country. That is still true today, and students from across the nation enroll here for the opportunity to study under renowned leaders in the health care industry and to gain the knowledge and skills that will help them build a successful career.

Boston College is a private Jesuit university that accepts students of all faiths and backgrounds. A spirit of inclusiveness and inspiration animates the campus. Students in one of the nursing degree programs may choose from a variety of learning paths. Those wishing to earn a baccalaureate degree will receive the general nursing knowledge and clinical experience required to obtain employment in the field. In the master’s degree programs, students elect from between seven areas of specialization. The Ph.D. program offers unmatched opportunities to perform research that substantially improves the practice of nursing in local communities and around the world. With accreditation provided by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, students from the Connell School of Nursing receive an education that is respected by potential employers around the world.

A critical shortage of qualified nurses makes this career path an excellent choice for students in the New England area. Many of the nation’s top hospitals and other health care facilities are located in the region. Accordingly, graduates from any of the Connell School of Nursing degree programs are likely to find that their newly acquired knowledge and abilities will be highly sought after by some of the most respected health care facilities operating today.

Students hoping to earn a baccalaureate degree complete a program of study that includes general education requirements along with nursing academic courses and hands on clinical practice. Graduates from the program are prepared to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination and are qualified to take on the role of nurse in a wide variety of settings. The baccalaureate degree requires four years of full time study to complete.

At the graduate level, students choose from seven concentration areas. These concentrations enable the student to enter the nursing field with a specific career goal in mind, such as pediatrics, anesthesia or women’s health. On average, two years of full time study are required to complete a graduate level nursing degree. Boston College offers all nursing programs on campus and has not developed online curriculum.

With hundreds of nursing programs being offered throughout the United States, it can be difficult to sort through which ones offer the best learning opportunities. The Connell School of Nursing has been recognized by U.S. News and World report as being one of the top nursing schools in the country. Thanks to its international learning opportunities, expert faculty, dedication to research, outstanding facilities and connections with some of the top medical institutions in the nation, Boston College graduates can feel assured that they have attended one of the best nursing schools.

Boston College recognizes that understanding the human condition is central to the nursing profession. Because of this, the school offers myriad international learning opportunities to students. Haiti, Ecuador and the Dominican Republic are just a sampling of the locales available for learning about health care in other parts of the world and the impact that cultural perspectives have on the delivery of medicine. This opportunity to study in diverse locations is just one of many reasons that students choose the nursing program at Boston College.

The renowned faculty members also attract many students to the Connell School of Nursing. Among them are several professors who hold Doctor of Nursing degrees. Many teachers specialize in diverse fields of inquiry such as mental health, cancer care, trauma and palliative care. The tremendous depth of knowledge and learning possessed by the faculty affords an unmatched educational experience.

Over the years, the nursing school has developed a strong reputation as a research facility. Students in the nursing program benefit from the insights gained through this research and some are also granted the opportunity to participate in research programs while on campus. A broad range of research projects are always underway at the Office for Nursing Research, representing valuable opportunities for nursing students.

The outstanding on campus facilities are another reason that students choose Boston College. Recognized the world over as a leading example, the library collection is constantly evolving to include the latest texts. Students also benefit from the Nursing Simulation Laboratory, a cutting edge facility where hands on teaching experiences happen on a daily basis. In the laboratory, real world situations are simulated, giving small groups of students a chance to practice their newly acquired skills. State-of-the-art manikins provide an astonishingly realistic learning experience. Students receive even more valuable clinical experience through the college’s connection to many health care facilities in the area. Part of the nursing program includes working at facilities like the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Massachusetts General Hospital and Tufts Medical Center.

With a long and distinguished history, Boston College’s reputation as one of the best nursing schools is well deserved. Its picturesque campus features lovely examples of gothic architecture, and its Chestnut Hill location is conveniently close to Boston. A well developed mass transit system makes it easy for students to attend classes on campus and clinical experiences in health care facilities around the region. Great faculty, state-of-the-art facilities and a diversity of degree programs makes the Connell School of Nursing a top choice.

Conclusion
Cutting-edge nursing programs are those programs that are having a very tangible effect on practical nursing and nursing education. Each program must limit its specializations, and these are the areas where that effect is felt most. For soon-to-be students, this information can be useful by helping them to identify the nursing programs that excel in the area they intend to specialize.

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