Becoming an RN in Minnesota
There are more registered nurses than there are practitioners in any other health field. The reason is simple: Highly educated nurses are crucial to healthcare. Because the numbers — and the need — are both so great, there are a lot of educational choices for those seeking licensing. As of 2010, the Minnesota Board listed 18 BSN programs and 23 ADN programs. Some are mobility programs, designed exclusively for students who already have some type of nursing license. Still, whatever stage you are in your career, you are bound to find a lot of options. First time students who have some time to devote to their education will find a number of special programs, from local internships to study abroad. There are also flexible options for working professionals.
- Grand Canyon University - Accredited Degrees in Nursing
- Capella University - Earn your RN-to-BSN online from Capella University
- Purdue University Global - Graduate and Undergraduate Degrees and Postgraduate Certificates in Nursing
- Liberty University - Bachelor of Science in Nursing for the Registered Nurse
- Walden University - Online Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral Nursing Programs and Certificates
After graduation, a candidate will need authorization to take the NCLEX licensing exam. Minnesota, like other states, monitors programs to make sure that they maintain adequate pass rates.
Minnesota is not a nurse compact state, but does have border state recognition. This means that, in many cases, a nurse who hold a license in Iowa, Wisconsin, North Dakota, or South Dakota is eligible to practice in Minnesota. Nurses may check the site of the Minnesota Board for details.
An Educational Pathway for You
Career mobility programs help licensed practical nurses and paramedics transition to professional nursing roles. In Minnesota, a practical nurse can choose whether to pursue an ADN or BSN degree. The state has two types of programs for LPNs. Some LPN to RN bridge programs have curriculum that is designed especially for this population. Other RN programs award advanced placement to LPNs; in some cases, this advanced placement is actually mandated by law. Minnesota has an articulation agreement in place that makes it easier for students to move credits from institution to institution.
Minnesota schools also value prior education in other fields. Candidates with previous bachelor’s degrees have two additional options: an accelerated second bachelor’s or a direct entry master’s.
Registered Nursing Career Outlook in Minnesota
Demand for RNs is increasing at a rate much above the average growth rate for all jobs. In 2008, it was predicted that the occupation would see 22% growth in Minnesota; this rate was identical to the national average. The recession has caused some decline in hiring for new graduates. However, they are still faring better than graduates in many other fields. The AACN further reports that BSN graduates have done better than ADN candidates during the economic downturn. A 2010 survey of college deans found that 80% of Minnesota’s BSN and entry level master’s nurses did have job offers within four to six months after graduation.
The National Student Nurses Association and the National League for Nursing have jointly published an article of tips for new graduates. They suggest staying in contact with a mentor. The mentor can possibly do more than just review your resume. Some may even provide career enhancing opportunities like research. Mission work and volunteering are other possible career-enhancers.
The Application Process
Competition can be stiff, especially for higher degrees and more advanced programs. The University of Minnesota requires a 2.8 for admission to the BSN track, but notes that selected candidates tend to have higher averages. Academic record encompasses more than just one figure; repeating courses or withdrawing from them can make a candidate less competitive. On the other hand, there are a range of life experiences that can make a candidate more competitive. These include research experience, leadership ability, and prior healthcare experience as a CNA or volunteer. Diversity is also valued.
Entrance requirements tend to be a little lower at the ADN level. However, programs are still competitive. Some community colleges maintain a wait list of candidates who meet requirements, but that there aren’t seats for.
Minnesota State Board of Nursing ADN Programs
|Alexandria Technical College|
Associate Degree Nursing Program
(Admits LPNs only)
1601 Jefferson Street
Alexandria, MN 56308
Anoka-Ramsey Community College
Central Lakes College
College of St. Catherine
Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College
Hibbing Community College
Inver Hills-Century Colleges
Minneapolis Community and Technical College
Lake Superior College
Minnesota State College – Southeast Technical
Minnesota State Community and Technical College
Minnesota West Community and Technical College
Normandale Community College Nursing Program
North Hennepin Community College
Northland Community and Technical College
Northwest Technical College, Bemidji
Riverland Community College
Rochester Community and Technical College
South Central College
Minnesota State Board of Nursing Approved BSN Programs
National American University
This Pre-Licensure BSN program is approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing and qualifies graduates to sit for the NCLEX-RN exam.
Programs Offered: Nursing BSN
Bemidji State University
College of St. Benedict/St. John’s University Department of Nursing
College of St. Catherine
College of St. Scholastica
Concordia College Nursing Program
Globe University/Minnesota School of Business
Gustavus Adolphus and St. Olaf Colleges
Metropolitan State University College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University Moorhead
Presentation College Baccalaureate Nursing Program
St. Cloud State University
University of Minnesota
Winona State University
Minnesota State Board of Nursing Approved (Pre-Licensure) Direct Entry Masters in Nursing Programs
University of Minnesota School of Nursing