21+ Best Nursing Schools In Pennsylvania To Get Into 2022-2023

good nursing schools in Pennsylvania
good nursing schools in Pennsylvania

Nursing Schools In Pennsylvania: If you’re looking for the best accredited nursing programs in PA or good nursing schools in Pennsylvania, then this guide is for you.

If you live in Penn and want to care for others by becoming a nurse, then we have some vital information to share with you.

Skilled and educated nurses are in high demand. Health facilities and Hospitals in Pennsylvania are finding it difficult to fill their nursing vacancies. 

With 180,000 employed nurses in 2017, this number is long enough to accommodate the healthcare needs of patients in Pennsylvania.

In that regard, there are staffing shortages statewide. Following the records of BLS, the need for nurses will scale by 25% in 2022. 

Now more than ever before the need for nurses escalates, hence the need for you to attend any of the best, approved, and accredited nursing schools if you choose to study in Pennsylvania.

If you want to study in other regions, check out the Best Nursing Schools in California and Best Nursing Schools in Georgia.

With so many different nursing opportunities, how do you choose the right one for you?

Here in this guide, you will find information on the various nursing programs offered in Pennsylvania that best suits your professional goals and academic needs. Also, we have stated without reservation all you need to know to apply and get a license after graduation.

To help you know what to look for in a quality nursing school, we have let you know the three of the best nursing degree programs available in Pennsylvania. 

This selection we made was based on accreditation, affordability, flexibility, and curriculum comprehensiveness.

If this information is what you hope to find then you just had a one-stop destination at your fingertips.

Welcome Aboard Scholar!!!

Table of Content

Studying in Pennsylvania

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as it’s officially referred to is a U.S. state in the Mid-Atlantic, Northeastern, and Appalachian regions.

The state is best known for its industrial and agricultural outputs and center for coal, steel, and railroads.

It also houses some of the best schools which are a big attraction to international students as well as local residents.

Quick Facts About Accredited Nursing Schools in Pennsylvania.

A little specific about studying in Pennsylvania. I’m sure you want to know about the best nursing schools in Penn.

Nursing is a thriving course and one of the most applied courses in Pennsylvania. The country has a track record in this field of study.

In Pennsylvania, there are 147 schools with nursing accredited programs. 84 of these colleges offer associate’s degrees or certificates in nursing (ADN Programs). 63 offer bachelor’s degrees in nursing (BSN programs) and 42 offer master’s or advanced degrees in nursing (MSN programs) 

Most of the nursing schools in Penn rank high in various University rankings. This prowess can be traced to the quality and practical educational experience student nurses get in the schools.

In 2018, 3 schools ranked in Kiplinger’s Best Values in Public Colleges and 5 ranked in the Princeton Review’s Great Schools for Nursing Majors.

Also in 2018, 13 ranked in US News Best Nursing Schools for Master’s programs and 8 ranked for US News Best Nursing Schools for Doctor of Nursing Practice programs.

This acknowledgment in ranks shows that a decision to study nursing in Pennsylvania is one that requires a thumbs up.

What’s The Job Outlook For the Nursing Career in Pennsylvania?

One of the reasons for studying nursing is to get a job that gives you ample opportunity to practice after graduation.

Nursing graduates from Pennsylvania do not have the option of looking for a job. This is so because Hospitals throughout Pennsylvania are finding it difficult to fill their nursing vacancies.

In 2017, Pennsylvania had approximately 180,000 nurses in its registry. But today, that number is no longer enough. 

The turnover of nurses to attend to the increasingly old and I’ll patients in Pennsylvania has resulted in staffing shortages statewide.

Now more than ever, the job outlook for nurses is promising and chances are that it will escalate by 25% in 2022. 

The state has an approximate annual need for 4,800 nurses. 

What’s the Salary Structure For Nurses in Pennsylvania?

Getting a job in Penn as a nurse after attending one of the best accredited nursing schools in Pennsylvania is a good idea. 

However, keep in mind that although nurses in Pennsylvania have many employment opportunities, their salary structure is low compared to the national average.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that the average annual salary for a registered nurse in Penn is $71,410.

Nurses in hospitals in the metropolitan Philadelphia area and Lancaster County often earn in six-figures.

What’s the Cost of Nursing Schools in Pennsylvania?

How much you get to pay for nursing school at Penn will depend on the school, your program of choice, and the mode of study.

What this suggests is that there is no one size fits it all for the tuition cost at Penn. 

However, what we do know is that the tuition for the MSN program at Chatham University is estimated at $798 per credit hour.

While the BSN tuition at the UPenn School of Nursing is approximately $53,166.

Full-time ADN programs at the Reading Area Community College costs of $2,910 per semester.

What Kind of Nursing Programs Are Offered in Pennsylvania?

Most nursing schools in Penn offer programs such as;

  • BSN Programs
  • MSN Programs
  • ADN Programs 
  • LPN to RN Programs
  • Accelerated Nursing Programs

Once you’ve made a choice of institution, visit the school’s website for details of their program and duration of the study.

Best Nursing Schools In Pennsylvania To Get Into.

Out of the 147 accredited nursing schools in PA, we have put together a list of the best colleges with programs that are internationally recognized.

Keep in mind that these schools offer different programs such as Baccalaureate and Graduate degree programs in nursing.

Here is the list of best nursing schools at Penn for Baccalaureate and Graduate degree programs in nursing.

#1. University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing.

  • Founded: 1939
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 64%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 3500 Victoria St, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, United States.

Ranked in the U.S. News & World Report, National Institutes of Health (NIH), and “College Choice, we can see that the UP School of Nursing is one of the best schools with great nursing programs in Pennsylvania.

This college goes beyond teaching you skills of the profession, it also guides you to administer care through compassion using the latest evidence-based training technique.

Student nurses are exposed to learning situations in health care facilities, trauma centers, community hospitals, clinics, and rehabilitation centers. 

#2. M. Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing: Villanova University.

  • Founded: 1842
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 31%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 800 Lancaster Ave, Villanova, PA 19085, United States.  

If you are looking for private nursing schools in PA, M. Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing at Villanova has accredited programs that are good for consideration.

This college is best for independent and critical thinkers who can adapt to the rapid evolution of healthcare delivery. 

Student nurses learn in laboratories and high-tech simulation centers and have their clinical rotations at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania etc.

To foster healthcare, the school is associated with community health initiatives like the Center for Global & Public Health and the MacDonald Center for Obesity Prevention and Education.

#3. Duquesne University School of Nursing 

  • Founded: 1937
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 77%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 600 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15282, United States.

Duquesne University School of Nursing offers accredited programs in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Student nurses study in simulation centers designed to help them learn experientially. Also, here you find computerized mannequins that exhibit some human physiologic responses.

Also, students go on to clinical placements in hospitals, health facilities, and community clinics in Pittsburgh. 

#4. University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.

  • Founded: 1740
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 9%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 418 Curie Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19104, United States.

The sad news about applying to the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing is that chances are that you won’t get accepted.

The acceptance rate at the UPenn School of Nursing is incredibly low. This can be traced to the quality of education that keeps at the top spot of Elsevier’s QS World University ratings for nursing for 3 years in a row.

Students learn in 5 highly regarded health research initiatives. Also, the school has a virtual learning environment and goes for clinical placements in Pittsburgh.

#5. Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions.

  • Founded: 1891
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 77%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 1601 Cherry St, Philadelphia, PA 19102, United States.

Next on our list of best and accredited schools of nursing in Pennsylvania is the Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions.

Here at Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions students are exposed to experiential learning and access to 10 simulation suites. 

Another great attraction is that students learn alongside student physician assistants, physical therapists, or behavioral health therapists.

#6. Penn State Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing

  • Founded: 1855
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: Not Specified
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: Penn State University, Nursing Sciences Building, University Park, PA 16802, United States. 

Penn State Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing focuses on preparing nursing students to become professionals. 

Most Penn State Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing graduates can tackle issues on med/Surg or in critical care units. 

In the Clinical Simulation Center students get the chance to perfect bedside skills and practice interdisciplinary collaboration.

#7. Jefferson College of Nursing

  • Founded: 1825
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 66%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 26 E Red Bank Ave, Woodbury, NJ 08096, United States. 

Nursing programs at Thomas Jefferson University are one of the best you can get in Pennsylvania.

Though it was first founded as a medical school, in 1891, the school initiated a nursing program to train auxiliary medical personnel for its teaching hospital.

Basically, at Jefferson College of Nursing, student nurses learn the transdisciplinary skills of the 21st-century health care environment.

Also, they have their clinical rotations at Jefferson Health, a Philadelphia health care system.

#8. The University of Scranton

  • Founded: 1888
  • School Status: Private.
  • Acceptance Rate: 79%
  • Available Financial Aid: McLean Scholarship for Nursing and Physician Assistant Majors. 
  • Location: 800 Linden St, Scranton, PA 18510, United States. 

One reason why a nursing program at The University of Scranton is a great idea is that its programs are accredited by the Pennsylvania nursing board.

Another weird reason many love the University of Scranton is that it requires its students to 40 hours of service to others as a condition of graduation. 

Classes are small and coursework aims at standards and the latest trends in the delivery of healthcare. Little wonder it is one of the accredited nursing schools in PA. 

Also, student nurses are exposed to challenging scenarios in simulated hospital and outpatient environments. 

#9. School of Nursing, Widener University

  • Founded: 1821
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 75%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: Founders Hall, University Pl, Chester, PA 19013, United States.

Another private school in our list of good accredited nursing schools in Pennsylvania is the School of Nursing, Widener University.

Going to Widener University school of nursing is like going to the military. Here you’re trained to war against and lead the charge toward tomorrow’s health care.

At Widener, there is a balance between classrooms and experiential learning that happens in laboratories and real-world settings. 

Peculiar to this college is the option of evening and weekend classes.

#10. Robert Morris University

  • Founded: 1921
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 86%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 6001 University Blvd, Moon Twp, PA 15108, United States. 

If you’re from an underrepresented country or region, Robert Morris University may just be the nursing school for you.

It has undergraduate and graduates nursing programs that are focused on teaching students how to be excellent communicators and expert clinicians. 

Once students have gained mastery of the clinical skills, they’re assigned to clinical rotations at hospitals, ambulatory care centers, and community health agencies throughout western Pennsylvania.

Best Nursing Schools in Pennsylvania Offering associate degree programs in nursing (ADN).

#11. Northampton County Area Community College 

  • Founded: 1967
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: Scholarships 
  • Location: 3835 Green Pond Rd, Bethlehem, PA 18020, United States. 

Community Colleges such as Northampton County Area Community College affords students a high chance of getting admission.

Nursing programs in Northampton County Area Community College equips students to become RNs with skills and knowledge to kick start their nursing career.

In four semesters, student nurses graduate with a degree. Also, there is an option for evening/weekend classes.

#12. Pennsylvania College of Technology

  • Founded: 1914
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 1 College Ave, Williamsport, PA 17701, United States. 

At Pennsylvania College of Technology student, nurses can earn an RN degree. With the way the curriculum at Penn College of Technology is structured, upon graduation, students can work as entry-level nurses.

You can count on specialized training in clinical settings, home health agencies, and health, and long-term care facilities. 

Before applying for this nursing program, keep in mind that Pennsylvania College of Technology is one of the accredited nursing schools that is open to non-nursing students and LPNs.

#13. Community College of Allegheny County 

  • Founded: 1966
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 800 Allegheny Ave #1804, Pittsburgh, PA 15233, United States. 

If you are looking to study and become a registered nurse in two years, then you should add Community College of Allegheny County to your list of nursing schools in Pennsylvania.

This college offers nursing programs such as Registered Nursing, associate degree in nursing, LPN bridge programs.

For LPNs, you need to complete 68 credits in liberal arts, sciences, and nursing to earn your degree. 

Another interesting feature of the Community College of Allegheny County is that you can easily transfer to a four-year college for a BSN degree.

#14. Mount Aloysius College 

  • Founded: 1853
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 95%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 7373 Admiral Peary Hwy, Cresson, PA 16630, United States. 

Although Mount Aloysius College is an agelong college in Pennsylvania, its quality nursing education is revered among others in Penn.

Basically, Mount Aloysius College offers an ADN program that lasts for two years. Upon graduation, graduates can write the licensure exam and get a job if they pass to work as entry-level nurses.

#15. Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences

  • Founded: 1903
  • School Status: Private
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 850 Greenfield Rd, Lancaster, PA 17601, United States. 

Here is a private school for nursing that guarantees you 100% admission on application. 

At Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences, you can register for registered nursing which has two-year, three-year, and weekend/evening options.

Also, LPNs who are non-nursing students can apply for ASN to BSN.

#16. Community College of Beaver County 

  • Founded: 1966
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 1 Campus Dr, Monaca, PA 15061, United States. 

Community College of Beaver County was set up to meet the increase in demand for registered nurses in Pennsylvania.

ADN programs at Community College of Beaver County require 70-credit which takes 5 semesters to earn a degree. 

Also, students are allowed to have clinical experience in healthcare organizations in Allegheny, Lawrence, and Beaver county areas.

#17. Community College of Philadelphia 

  • Founded: 1965
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. 

Next on our list of accredited nursing schools in PA is the Community College of Philadelphia. 

This college offers a 64-credit A.A.S. degree in Nursing and it comes with three admission options: traditional, post-baccalaureate accelerated, and advanced placement.

Besides the intensive classroom lectures, students get the opportunity to work under the guidance of experts at healthcare facilities in the Philadelphia region.

Another interesting fact you should note about Community College of Philadelphia is that graduates can work as patient-care providers or transfer and pursue a BSN.

#18. Montgomery County Community College 

  • Founded: 1964
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 340 Dekalb Pike, Blue Bell, PA 19422, United States. 

In the list of accredited nursing schools in PA, Montgomery County Community College is one of the best in Pennsylvania. 

You can apply to study and become a registered nurse. The good thing is that you can apply for part-time and full-time programs.

Full-time nursing programs at Montgomery County Community College last for five semesters, while part-time takes nine semesters. 

All programs offer classroom and practical exposure.

#19. Harrisburg Area Community College 

  • Founded: 1964
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 1 HACC Dr, Harrisburg, PA 17110, United States. 

If you’re looking to do ADN programs then Harrisburg Area Community College is one of the best-accredited nursing schools in pa.

Graduations at Harrisburg Area Community College mean students have been professionally trained in the skills and knowledge.

ADN programs require 68-credit and can be full-time or part-time. The full-time program lasts four semesters, while the part-time last eight semesters.

#20. Butler County Community College 

  • Founded: 1965
  • School Status: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 100%
  • Available Financial Aid: None 
  • Location: 107 College Dr, Butler, PA 16002, United States. 

Butler County Community College offers an associate degree program with the latest techniques and technology.

ADN programs require 70-credit which can be split into 2 or 3 years. The 2 years option is open to students who have at least 12 college-level credits while the  3 years option is for students with less than 12 college-level credits.

Other Accredited Nursing Schools in PA with Good programs

  • Messiah College
  • La Salle University 
  • Temple University 
  • Moravian College
  • Holy Family University
  • West Chester University
  • York College of Pennsylvania
  • Gwynedd Mercy University 
  • Indiana University of Pennsylvania
good nursing schools in Pennsylvania
Medical school professor using model to teach nursing students

Frequently Asked Questions About Accredited Nursing Schools in PA.

What is the #1 Nursing School in PA?

The number one nursing school as recognized by various University rankings is the University of Pennsylvania.

Also, UPenn School of Nursing is acknowledged as number 1 in Pennsylvania because it has received the most NIH research funding including over $11 million in 2019.

What is the best Penn State Campus For Nursing?

Penn State has a lot of campus extensions, however, the best campus for nursing is the Penn State University Park.

Penn State University Park is the best for nursing because it has a track record of handing out 132 bachelor’s degrees in nursing. 

How Hard Is It To Get into Penn State Nursing?

Penn State University School of nursing is competitive. 

Out of 3,000 applications from the 2018-19 academic year, only 410 students were admitted from University Park and across the other campuses where the B.S.N. program is offered.

How Do I Get a Pennsylvania Nursing License?

To get a nursing license in Pennsylvania, you need to follow the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing regulations for exams and endorsement.

Regulations for exams require you to have the following documents;

  • Registration for NCLEX exam 
  • Criminal History Records Check
  • Education verification is sent directly from your school to the state Board.

For license and endorsement you need to provide the following documents;

  • Verification of Licensure
  • Criminal History Records Check
  • Official transcripts are sent directly to the Board via the school

Provision of all these will get you a nursing license to practice in Pennsylvania.

I believe at this point you can carefully make a choice of accredited nursing schools in pa that suits your professional and academic needs in Pennsylvania.

You can also consider the Best Nursing Schools in New York City as well as the Best Nursing Schools in Dallas, Texas.

If you ever consider doing Medicine, check out the What Is A Good MCAT Score? |See The Breakdown On How to Get It and Medical Schools That Don’t Require MCAT| Complete Guide 2022.

Also, enrolling in the Easiest Nursing Schools to Get Into will need to secure some of the Nursing Scholarships for International Students

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