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Online Nursing Degrees and Careers

Jobs in nursing are expected to grow 16% by 2024 — quicker than the average for any other occupation.

Earning Your Nursing Degree Online

Considering a degree program in nursing, but can’t find the time for all of the in-person classes? Online nursing programs are on the rise. In fact, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, online nursing programs have grown by more than 30% in the last two years.

And it’s no wonder: jobs in nursing are expected to grow 16% by 2024 — quicker than the average for any other occupation. As people are living longer, and there are higher instances of chronic health problems, nurses are in high demand. Experienced registered nurses can expect a median salary of $68,450.

In online nursing programs, a combination of traditional lecture-style courses and online seminars allow busy adults to increase their earning potential and advance their career, all while balancing other work and family obligations. Students complete the same curriculum, but with a more flexible schedule. Even online nursing programs that include an in-person clinical component have flexible terms, allowing students to complete clinicals through labs on campus, at local hospitals, or at their hospital of employment.

Costs vary depending on which institution you choose, but online nursing programs are typically cheaper than their in-person counterparts, as students are not required to pay fees for on-campus facilities or technology costs.

The Best Online Nursing Programs

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1

Allen College

9 to 1 79% 100% N/A 32% 81% 2%

Allen College in Waterloo, Iowa, offers fully online and hybrid programs geared toward distance learners and working professionals, including one of the nation’s best online RN to BSN programs. The 124-credit RN to BSN program provides top-quality instruction at a reasonable price and can be completed full-time or part-time. Coursework is delivered through Blackboard and covers topics such as professional writing, nursing informatics, and nursing leadership.

The curricula includes 30 BSN credits and general education requirements, and transfer credits are accepted. Allen College maintains partnerships with regional institutions, including Northeast Iowa Community College, to streamline credit transfers. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA.

N/A
1990 Heath St
Waterloo, Iowa 50703-1999
Program Page
2

Mount Carmel College of Nursing

12 to 1 71% 88% 74% 62% 52% 3%

Mount Carmel has campuses in Columbus and Lancaster and offers online programs tailored to distance learners and working professionals. Mount Carmel's fully online RN to BSN degree completion program includes coursework in the humanities and sciences.

Most full-time students complete the program in about a year and a half, and part-time students may require up to two and a half years. Of the required 128 credits, students must take 44 through Mount Carmel. Classes cover topics like transcultural concepts, nursing informatics, and applied humanities. Unlike other degree completion programs, Mount Carmel's RN to BSN program requires students to complete general education courses through Mount Carmel. Online coursework is delivered through Canvas. Applicants must have a 2.0 GPA, and those from ACEN-accredited pre-licensure programs receive preference.

N/A
127 So. Davis Ave
Columbus, Ohio 43222-1504
Program Page
3

Jefferson College of Health Sciences

9 to 1 21% 73% N/A 89% 78% 5%

Located in Roanoke, Virginia, Jefferson offers quality online instruction for distance learners on a budget. A standout among RN to BSN online programs, Jefferson’s RN to BSN program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The 122-credit program offers flexibility for working professionals and may be completed on a full-time or part-time basis. Courses cover a variety of topics, including research applications of healthcare, writing in professional nursing, and social and behavioral science. Students work closely with advisors to customize their degree. Online coursework is delivered through Blackboard. Students must complete at least 32 credits through Jefferson and must complete the program within five years. Jefferson offers credit for prior learning.

N/A
101 Elm Avenue SE
Roanoke, Virginia 24013
Program Page
4

Wilson College

9 to 1 36% 79% 31% 46% 63% 7%

With a historic campus based in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, Wilson is a national leader in liberal arts education. Wilson offers one of the best online RN to BSN programs in the country. The program is accredited by the National League for Nursing Commission for Nursing Education Accreditation.

Wilson's 120-credit RN to BSN program blends a liberal arts education with nursing requirements. Students take classes in family and community structures, economic policy, and global interdependence. Core requirements in role transitions, research, and evidence-based practice reflect the program’s holistic approach. Online coursework is delivered through Canvas, and full-time students complete the program in about two years. Applicants must have at least a 2.7 GPA.

N/A
1015 Philadelphia Ave
Chambersburg, Pennsylvania 17201-1285
Program Page
5

Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences

12 to 1 N/A 100% 42% 80% 62% 2%

Founded in Lancaster in 1903, PA College offers an online RN to BSN program that is ideal for working professionals. The 120-credit program is accredited by the Commision on Collegiate Nursing Education and is a flexible, affordable option for busy students.

PA College's RN to BSN program is offered in an accelerated format; full-time students typically complete the program in less than two years. Students explore conceptual foundations of nursing practice, nursing in a global society, and ethical issues in healthcare. Students customize their degree with electives and complete coursework using Blackboard. Applicants must have at least a 2.0 GPA and must work in a healthcare occupation for at least eight hours per week.

N/A
410 N Lime Street
Lancaster, Pennsylvania 17602
Program Page
6

George Washington University

12 to 1 74% 93% 44% 29% 40% 1%

Founded in 1821 in the District of Columbia, GWU offers one of the most respected online RN to BSN programs in the country. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and is designed for working professionals on a budget.

Distance learners study part time and graduate in 15 months. Students may bring transfer credits, but they must complete at least 21 credits through GWU. The program requires 120 credits, including a 15-credit professional portfolio. Coursework covers topics like population health, nursing leadership, and teaching with technology. Online coursework is delivered asynchronously through Blackboard, and graduates can apply much of the program's curriculum toward a graduate degree.

N/A
2121 I Street, NW
Washington, District of Columbia 20052
Program Page
7

Mount Mercy University

14 to 1 45% 81% 57% 34% 74% 4%

Founded in 1928 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Mount Mercy offers distance education programs designed for working professionals, including one of the best accelerated RN to BSN programs available. Mount Mercy’s program is recognized among accredited RN to BSN online programs as one of the best in the country.

The accelerated program requires 123 credits, which most students complete in two years. Core requirements include classes in population-based nursing, pharmacotherapeutics, and pathophysiology. Online courses are delivered asynchronously through the Brightspace management system. Applicants must have at least a 3.0 GPA and must work part time in a healthcare setting. Students must maintain a 2.0 GPA in all nursing classes.

N/A
1330 Elmhurst Dr NE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52402-4797
Program Page
8

Baptist Memorial College of Health Sciences

12 to 1 60% 73% 54% 42% 83% 8%

Founded in Memphis in 1912, Baptist College offers degrees in highly specialized areas, such as nuclear medicine. The college's RN to BSN program is available in fully online and blended formats and is accredited by the Tennessee Board of Nursing.

Baptist College's degree is unique among online RN to BSN programs for its adaptability to various experience levels. Students may receive up to 41 credits for prior learning and general education credit for CLEP exams. Full-time students complete four trimesters in about two years, and part-time students complete seven trimesters in about four years. Coursework covers topics such as pathophysiology, pharmacology, and U.S. healthcare systems. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA.

N/A
1003 Monroe Ave
Memphis, Tennessee 38104
Program Page
9

Maryville University of Saint Louis

13 to 1 52% 86% 72% 37% 66% 5%

Founded in 1872 in St. Louis, Missouri, Maryville offers a variety of fully online programs, including one of the most respected online RN to BSN programs in the state. Maryville’s RN to BSN program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and approved by the Missouri State Board of Nursing.

The 128-credit program instructs students in topics such as psychosocial nursing care, nursing care of children, and pathophysiology for nursing practice. The curriculum culminates in a capstone project on public health. Online courses are delivered through Canvas and utilize synchronous and asynchronous learning methods. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA, and applicants for whom English is a second language must have a TOEFL score of 85.

N/A
650 Maryville University Drive
Saint Louis, Missouri 63141-7299
Program Page
10

University of St Francis

11 to 1 34% 81% 51% 28% 69% 4%

Founded in 1920 in Joliet, Illinois, USF provides a liberal arts education rooted in the Catholic tradition. The school offers one of the most affordable online RN to BSN programs available.

Full-time students complete the 128 required credits in two and a half years. Students work with faculty advisors to transfer credits and customize their degree. Courses cover a variety of topics, including principles of management in healthcare, ethical and legal issues for healthcare, and pharmacology. Online courses are delivered asynchronously through Blackboard. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA, and students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 in nursing courses.

N/A
500 N Wilcox St
Joliet, Illinois 60435-6188
Program Page
11

Nebraska Methodist College of Nursing & Allied Health

12 to 1 67% 70% 83% 50% 84% 3%

Located in Omaha, NMC offers online versions of its respected nursing and allied health degrees. Among the college's distance programs is an RN to BSN program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The 126-credit, asynchronous program is ideal for working professionals. Each course lasts five weeks, and full-time students typically complete the program within seven semesters. Required courses include community health nursing, principles of research, and the sociology of culture. The curriculum emphasizes community-centered practice. Students in the Omaha area may declare a minor. NMC offers credit for prior learning, and applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA.

N/A
720 North 87th Street
Omaha, Nebraska 68114-2852
Program Page
12

Rowan University

17 to 1 49% 84% 44% 44% 57% 5%

Founded in 1923 in Glassboro, New Jersey, Rowan University offers diverse distance education programs, including an affordable online RN to BSN program. The program requires 121 credits and is ideal for busy students with personal or professional commitments.

Students can complete the program part or full time, and an accelerated format is available. Coursework covers community health nursing, nursing informatics, and nursing care delivery systems. The curriculum prepares students for diverse career paths. Graduates can apply many of their earned credits toward a master's of science in nursing. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA and must submit a professional résumé.

N/A
201 Mullica Hill Road
Glassboro, New Jersey 8028
Program Page
13

Villanova University

12 to 1 85% 94% 49% 22% 43% 2%

Founded in 1842 outside Philadelphia, VU provides on-campus and online programs rooted in the Catholic tradition, including an online RN to BSN program. The 122-credit RN to BSN program is one of only three programs in the nation to be consecutively designated a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League for Nursing.

Courses explore topics such as imperatives for global and public health, cultural influences on health beliefs and practices, and principles for nutrition. Online courses are delivered through Blackboard and utilize both asynchronous and synchronous learning methods. The program’s curriculum does not include general education courses, which applicants must have completed previously. Applicants must have at least a 2.75 GPA.

N/A
800 Lancaster Avenue
Villanova, Pennsylvania 19085-1699
Program Page
14

Chatham University

9 to 1 51% 77% 52% 32% 49% 3%

Founded in 1869 in Pittsburgh, Chatham offers an online RN to BSN program tailored to working professionals with busy schedules. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and is available in an accelerated format, which students can complete within a year.

Coursework covers topics including nursing communication and quality improvement, women’s health nursing, and health policy and finance. The curriculum emphasizes critical thinking skills and the liberal arts. Students complete three self-directed practice exercises and may pursue a minor in business or psychology. Applicants must have at least a 2.0 GPA, and students must maintain a 2.0 GPA in order to graduate. Transfer students may bring up to 90 of the 120 required credits.

N/A
Woodland Rd
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15232
Program Page
15

William Jewell College

10 to 1 61% 77% 63% 30% 64% 5%

Founded in 1849 in Liberty, Missouri, Jewell's online offerings include an RN to BSN program that is ideal for students balancing school with work or family commitments. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Students may complete the 124-credit program on a full- or part-time basis. Required courses include community health nursing, critical care nursing, and healthcare and its role in society. The curriculum includes practice experience and in-person direct and indirect care components. Applicants must have a 2.7 GPA and must submit two references and a written profile of relevant experience. Applicants must have completed 62 to 66 credits of previous coursework.

N/A
500 College Hill
Liberty, Missouri 64068-1896
Program Page
16

Eastern Mennonite University

10 to 1 45% 75% 60% 24% 73% 3%

Founded in 1917, EMU's main campus is in Harrisonburg, Virginia. The university also offers courses at its Lancaster, Pennsylvania, campus and online. EMU's online RN to BSN program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and is regarded as one of the best online RN to BSN programs available.

The 124-credit program takes 20 months to complete and is ideal for working professionals with tight schedules. The curriculum includes coursework in effective communication, global trends in health, and nursing management. The program culminates in an evidence-based practice project. Applicants must have a minimum 2.0 GPA, must have completed 60 credits of general education coursework, and must submit a writing sample.

N/A
1200 Park Rd
Harrisonburg, Virginia 22802-2462
Program Page
17

Mercy College of Ohio

6 to 1 42% 57% 57% 55% 73% 7%

Founded in 1917 in Toledo, Ohio, Mercy is an innovator in online health sciences programs, such as its online RN to BSN program. The 123-credit program is available in fully online and hybrid formats. Applicants with a GPA of at least 3.0 may elect to complete the program in an accelerated format.

The curriculum covers transcultural nursing, health assessment and promotion, and statistics for nursing. The program culminates in hands-on clinical work, and flexible scheduling accommodates working professionals. Students can earn credit for CLEP exams and NLN work. Applicants should have a 2.75 GPA, though applicants with GPAs of at least 2.5 may be considered.

N/A
2221 Madison Avenue
Toledo, Ohio 43604-1132
Program Page
18

King University

11 to 1 43% 76% 57% 35% 69% 8%

Founded in 1867 in Bristol, Tennessee, faith-based King University offers an online RN to BSN program approved by of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing and accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

King's program is one of the best accelerated RN to BSN programs; students complete the 124 required credits in about 16 months. Coursework covers topics such as evidence-based practice, introduction to healthcare information, and writing for health professions. Though the majority of requirements may be completed online, the curriculum culminates in a community service project. Applicants must have a 2.2 GPA and must have completed 30 credits of general education prerequisites.

N/A
1350 King College Rd
Bristol, Tennessee 37620-2699
Program Page
19

University of Wisconsin-Madison

18 to 1 53% 95% 57% 43% 36% 2%

Founded in 1848, UW–Madison offers an flexible online RN to BSN program. The degree completion program is ideal for working professionals with busy schedules. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Students may complete the program on a full-time and part-time basis and must bring at least 60 credits from previous coursework. Most students complete the program in one to three years. The curriculum covers topics such as chronic care management, evidence-based practice, and information management. Online courses are delivered asynchronously through the Desire2Learn platform. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA.

N/A
500 Lincoln Dr
Madison, Wisconsin 53706-1380
Program Page
20

Clemson University

16 to 1 57% 92% 52% 32% 43% 3%

Founded in 1889, Clemson University offers innovative online programs, including a respected RN to BSN program, which is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The affordable program is one of only 35 programs in the nation to be recognized as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education by the National League of Nursing since 2004. Students may apply up to six credits toward a master’s degree in nursing. The curriculum covers topics such as the nursing care of children, mental health nursing, and leadership and management in nursing. Applicants must have at least a 3.0 GPA, and students must maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5 in all nursing coursework.

N/A
201 Sikes Hall
Clemson, South Carolina 29634
Program Page
21

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale

12 to 1 44% 75% 49% 68% 69% 18%

Keiser offers programs at a dozen campuses throughout Florida and online. Keiser's online RN to BSN program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education. The 120-credit program is designed for working professionals and is available in fully online and hybrid formats.

Students must earn 60 upper division credits through Keiser, and applicants must have previously completed 60 general education credits. The curriculum emphasizes critical thinking, communication, and leadership and includes courses such as nursing informatics, crisis intervention, and research writing. Students must maintain at least a 2.0 GPA. Keiser offers tuition assistance for veterans and their families, and U.S. military families receive unlimited access to online tutoring services.

N/A
1500 NW 49th St.
Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33309
Program Page
22

Sacred Heart University

15 to 1 58% 82% 57% 27% 62% 4%

Founded in 1963 in Fairfield, Connecticut, the Catholic university of SHU offers an online RN to BSN program, which is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The 120-credit program may be completed on a part- or full-time basis. Most students complete the degree one and a half to three years. Students must take at least 30 credits through SHU. The holistic curriculum includes coursework in evidence-based practice and global health. Online courses are delivered asynchronously through Blackboard. Applicants must have at least a 2.5 GPA and must submit a résumé, two letters of recommendation, and a personal statement.

N/A
5151 Park Ave
Fairfield, Connecticut 06825-1000
Program Page
23

Northwestern College

13 to 1 53% 77% 78% 32% 69% 2%

Founded in 1851, Northwestern's historic campus is located in Evanston, Illinois. Northwestern's fully online RN to BSN program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and is one of the most highly regarded RN to BSN online programs in the country.

Students complete the program in one and half to three years and must take at least 30 credits through Northwestern. Courses cover topics such as nursing science, lifespan health assessment, and community health nursing. Northwestern's online courses are delivered asynchronously through Blackboard, and students receive credit for prior experience. Students have access to free online tutoring. Applicants must have at least a 2.7 GPA.

N/A
101 Seventh St SW
Orange City, Iowa 51041
Program Page
24

Quinnipiac University

13 to 1 71% 85% 66% 11% 61% 2%

Located in North Haven, Connecticut, Quinnipiac offers one of the most respected accredited online RN to BSN programs in the country. The program is designed for students with busy lifestyles and working professionals on tight deadlines.

Students must complete only 32 credits through Quinnipiac. Coursework covers topics such as nursing science and information literacy, contemporary issues and roles in nursing practice, and principles of ethical theory in nursing. The program culminates in three self-directed practice experiences, which students must arrange. Online courses are delivered asynchronously through Blackboard. Discounts are available for active military members and veterans. Applicants must have a 2.7 GPA.

N/A
Mt Carmel Ave
Hamden, Connecticut 6518
Program Page
25

Misericordia University

13 to 1 54% 80% 71% 31% 72% 6%

Founded in 1924 in Dallas, Pennsylvania, Misericordia offers an array of online programs, including an online RN to BSN program. The competitive program is available in part-time and accelerated formats and is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The 126-credit program is ideal for working professionals on a budget. The curriculum includes courses in health assessment; care of aggregates, communities, and populations; and professional nursing concepts. The program emphasizes a holistic approach to the theory and practice of nursing. Students can pursue a concentration in nursing leadership. Applicants must have a cumulative GPA of at least 2.75.

N/A
301 Lake St
Dallas, Pennsylvania 18612-1098
Program Page

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Job Outlook for Nursing Graduates

Graduates from any type of college degree program usually have one thing on their minds: will I be able to find a job? Luckily for those who have completed nursing degrees from accredited online nurse practitioner programs, job placement rates for recent graduates at every level of nursing are considerably higher than other fields.

These rates will vary slightly based on the graduate’s institution, but where the applicant resides in the U.S. does have significant bearing on their job future. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) found that for those graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from the West have a 41% job placement rate after graduation, compared with their counterparts from the South at 70%. Job placement rates also go up significantly with the attainment of advanced degrees.

The AACN also found that employers show preference to nursing candidates who have at least a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Research has shown that nurses with this degree provide better care, causing lower death rates and increased patient outcomes. One AACN study surveyed 582 nursing schools, and found that while only 47.4% of them require new nursing hires to have at least a bachelor’s degree, 83.5% of employers at said nursing schools have at least a preference for hiring nursing candidates who have a bachelor-level education.

A 2014 study by the National Association of Colleges found that of the nearly 44,000 students surveyed in all majors, only 29.3% had job offers at the time of their graduation. For those graduating with an online degree in nursing, however, prospects are much higher.

Job Placement % After Graduation Job Placement % 4-6 months After Graduation Average Salary After Graduation Average Salary with 5 Years Experience
Bachelor of Science in Nursing 61% 90% $51,896 $75,072
Master of Science in Nursing 73% 94% $86,056 $90,625

Types of Nursing Careers

Geriatric

Geriatric nurses work with elderly patients, as they are often in need of acute, frequent care. Geriatric nurses receive a general education in nursing, but also have the added expertise of caring for older populations and those who are at greater risk of illness and injury. Typically, nurses in this field help with administering medication, pain management, and assisting with rehabilitation after a patient is injured.

Geriatric staff nurses earn an average annual salary of $66,295.

Midwifery

Nurse midwives can be trained through online family nurse practitioner programs to provide care during childbirth, and at the prenatal and postpartum stages of pregnancy. They track development of the fetus, perform gynecological exams, and work with expectant mothers on proper nutrition and care for themselves and the baby.

Nurse midwives earn an annual average salary of $107,460.

Oncological

Nurses in oncology work with both patients who have been diagnosed with cancer as well as those at risk of the disease. They prescribe medication, perform chemotherapy, and administer other treatments. Oncology nurses track patient care, maintain lab and pathology results, and advocate for patients to help them better understand their diagnoses.

Oncology nurse practitioners can earn an annual average salary of $101,672.

Neonatal

Neonatal nurses work with newborns who have health issues or problems, including those having experienced a premature birth or suffering from a congenital defect. The neonatal period is defined as the first four weeks of life, but since some of these issues last longer than a month, neonatal nurses may care for babies for much longer. Nurses monitor babies using specialized equipment like incubators and ventilators, administer medication and specialized feedings, and provide support and education to the baby’s family.

Neonatal nurse practitioners earn a median annual average salary of $95,106.

Pediatric

Nurses in pediatrics work with children all the way through young adulthood. Pediatric nurses perform developmental screenings, and check vitals and growth during wellness visits. They often administer immunizations and vaccinations, and examine symptoms to help diagnose potential illnesses in young patients.

Pediatric nurse practitioners earn an annual average salary of $89,792.

Types of Nursing Degrees

Depending on the type of nursing job you are looking to pursue, there are various levels of nursing degrees. When selecting the online degree that’s right for you, consider your individual career aspirations and the time commitment it requires.

Degree Level Definition Possible Concentrations Median Annual Salary
Associate ASNs focus on technical skills in two year program. Students take courses in nursing, anatomy, and biology, and are required to complete a clinical component. Paramedic ASN, Registered nurse $59,540
RN to BSN This is a two-year bridge-program for RNs that want to become BSNs, allowing previous courses and work experience as credit toward the program. Staff nurse, Nurse midwife $68,450
Bachelor’s 3-4 year program that includes both general education requirements and nursing science classes. Nursing Manager, Nursing specialists: ICU, emergency room, operating room $61,765
Master’s The MSN takes 18-24 months, and allows students to specialize in an area of nursing interest, such as pediatrics or psychiatry. Nurse administrator, Nurse educator $72,829

Nursing Certifications and Licensing

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For nurses, a license is more than just a piece of paper that allows you to practice: it’s a confirmation to yourself and to your patients that you have mastered the coursework and training necessary to provide excellent nursing care. Each state, as required by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, mandates that graduating nurses take one of two licensing exams.

Licensure requirements vary from state to state, but are generally comprised of nursing education, a passing score on the licensing exam, and the character of the applicant. These requirements are evaluated by the Nursing State Board in the state in which you will be practicing.

For LVNs (Licensed Vocational Nurses) and LPNs (Licensed Practical Nurses), states require completion of an accredited educational program, most of which are about a year in length, and include coursework in biology, nursing, and pharmacology. From there, candidates for licensure have to take the NCLEX exam, an online test that evaluates competency in safe and effective care, health promotion and maintenance, psychosocial integrity, and physiological integrity. Full licensure, in addition to passing the NCLEX exam, includes successful background checks and character references for the nursing candidate.

Licenses must be renewed every few years; renewal requires a small fee and confirmation that any out-of-state licensees are in good standing.

Nursing Scholarships

The Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce predicts 1.6 million new jobs for nurses through the year 2020. As the need for nurses continues to grow, and many organizations and hospitals have taken note, there is an increasing number of scholarship opportunities to help potential nursing students with the cost of their education.

Foundations like the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation have created initiatives and funds to support future nurses, citing that “nurses should achieve higher levels of education and training through an improved education system that promotes seamless academic progression.” Even the US Health Resources and Services Administration has joined in the efforts, offering scholarships for tuition and fees through their NURSE Corps Scholarship Program. Below are just some of the scholarships available to those interested in pursuing or advancing their career in nursing:

Geraldine 'Polly' Bednash Scholarship

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This scholarship is awarded to students enrolled in a bachelor’s or advanced degree nursing program at any American Association of Colleges of Nursing school affiliated with Castle Branch. Students must have a 3.2 GPA in current school or last school attended in order to qualify.

  • Amount: $5,000
  • Deadline: January 31, April 30, July 31, and October 31
Hurst Review Services

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In partnership with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, the scholarship is awarded to students pursuing professional nursing degrees. Students must attend an AACN school to be eligible for the award.

  • Amount: $2,500
  • Deadline: January 15 and July 15
American Association of Occupational Health Nurses Professional Development Scholarship

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The scholarship supports students in order to advance health professionals who want to enhance their leadership skills. Applicants must be a licensed nurse interested in professional development to qualify.

  • Amount: $1,500
  • Deadline: December 1
NURSE Corps Scholarship Program

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This scholarship promotes learning for students enrolled in an accredited nursing program at any level, who do not have federal liens or federal debt.

  • Amount: Varied, including tuition, fees, learning costs, and monthly stipend
  • Deadline: May 2017
National Black Nurses Association Scholarship

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This scholarship is awarded to multiple nurses who wish to advance their careers through continuing education. Applicants must be a member of NBNA in a local chapter, enrolled and in good standing in a nursing program, and with at least one year of school left.

  • Amount: $1,000-$6,000
  • Deadline: Varies

Professional Organizations

Joining a professional organization is like hanging out with a group of your friends who can relate to you and who have your back. They all understand the latest nursing lingo and have relatable on-the-job stories. Professional organizations are great for nurses at every level, whether they are still in school or ten years into the job. They can help members find jobs, connect with mentors, and offer opportunities for professional development. These organizations are also great for students enrolled in online nurse practitioner programs and online nursing programs, bringing networking opportunities to students from all over the country. Professional organizations keep their members informed of changes and updates in the field, and encourage continuing education and certification opportunities.

Fees and membership dues vary for professional organizations, but most offer discounted rates for students and young professionals. Some organizations even offer scholarship awards to college students studying in the field. There are a variety of professional organizations out there to fit the specific needs of its members, including this sample selection below:

Open Courseware

Open Courseware is a convenient and worthwhile resource for both beginners just entering the field and seasoned professionals alike. Classes are available online, for free, and provide high-level, institution-designed information for all to view.

If you’re switching careers or coming into nursing as a newbie, nursing-related Open Courseware can help you get your feet wet, learn some of the terms and jargon, and get you prepared for official coursework once your college classes start.

If you’re a nursing veteran, Open Courseware can help you brush up on your skills. In an ever-changing health field, continuing education for nurses is critical. It’s important to constantly refresh your knowledge of the basics and essentials of patient care and to learn new medical standards and research. Those in the medical profession also have to contend with frequent updates to technology and industry protocols. Time constraints and limited financial resources can prohibit nurses from keeping up to date on these changes, and can limit their ability to take additional classes. Open Courseware is a flexible alternative to stay up to date on industry standards and on top of your game. Below are a few options for available courses:

Nursing for Beginners

Specialized Care

The Business of Nursing

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