Minnesota Nurse Programs

Minnesota is ranked one of the healthiest states in the country. In addition to pursuing more active lifestyles, residents also have access to a network of superior health facilities, including the award-winning Mayo Clinic.

Students looking for quality nursing programs will have 56 schools to choose from, including the highly ranked University of Minnesota Medical School. Many programs are offered in brick-and-mortar institutions, and there are several online nursing programs available as well. Technical and two-year colleges like Alexandria and Century can help high school grads become LPNs and beyond. Advanced programs at colleges such as Minnesota State and Bethel can assist RNs in earning BSN degrees. If seeking a Master’s, the state offers those programs as well, at Saint Mary’s, the Mayo Clinic, and more. No matter what level of education you are seeking, you’re covered; however, if clinical research is of particular interest then Minnesota should be at the top of your college search.

Nursing Jobs and Education in MN

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics the field of Healthcare is estimated to grow 33% by the year 2020.  Nurses, in particular, will play a very large role in that percentage, with job growth estimated at 26%.

Minnesota’s unemployment rate of 5.5% is much lower than the national average–meaning jobs are being filled. Job growth is occurring, but at a slower pace than new graduates might hope. The Twin Cities of Minneapolis-Saint Paul will have the largest concentration of jobs—though caregivers specializing in subjects such as Geriatrics and advanced care needs may do well in Greater Minnesota. It is important to note that Minnesota is taking heed of the Institute of Medicine’s report which advises, by 2020, 80% of all RNs should hold Baccalaureate degrees.

So what does this mean for nursing students eyeing an education and possible employment in Minnesota? If planning on doing just the minimum required to become an RN that can be done anywhere. If aiming for advanced education and to ultimately excel in a specialized field or in clinical research, then Minnesota would be a very good choice for both school and work.

Average Salaries for Nursing Jobs in Minnesota

Data from BLS 2011 10th Percentile 25th Percentile 50th Percentile
Registered Nurses $50,250 $60,030 $72,330
Licensed Practical Nurses $31,560 $34,540 $39,570
Nursing Aides/Orderlies $20,590 $22,650 $26,240
Home Health Aides $17,850 $20,280 $22,440

Licensing for Nurses in Minnesota

In order to work in Minnesota Registered Nurses and Practical Nurses must be licensed within the state. To become licensed, LPNS must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN) and RNs must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Minnesota does not adhere to the Nurse Licensure Compact so nurses registered in other states may not practice in the state. However, there are some exceptions when a nurse not licensed in Minnesota may practice in the state if they are:

  • Practicing in Minnesota as part of their formal nursing studies
  • Assisting during an emergency
  • Practicing in a US government agency

For a full list of exceptions and licensing information please refer to the Minnesota Board of Nursing website.

Nursing Programs in South Dakota

Prospective nursing students in South Dakota have a total of 10 accredited schools to choose from, and these schools are spread relatively evenly throughout the state, which improves the chances that a suitable program is near you

Transitional Programs in SD

Nurses who want to become ADN-certified RNs or even achieve their BSN have several options in South Dakota, and perhaps because of the size of the state, many of these programs have online components.

University of South Dakota, for example, has four campuses throughout the state for people to take their in-class curriculum components, but most of their programs also have an e-learning component as well, which cuts down on travel time. Most of the LPN-to-RN programs in South Dakota also allow nurses to continue on to their BSN if they want, which will improve their job prospects.

Graduate Programs for Nurses

The graduate nursing programs in South Dakota are perfectly geared toward the state’s areas of highest employment, which is fortunate for nursing students in the state. In fact, with nurse anesthesia being such an incredibly successful profession in the state, the master’s of nurse anesthesia program available at Mount Marty College in Yankton should be on every potential graduate student’s list,

The most notable universities in the state for graduate programs are Mount Marty College and South Dakota State University — with the former offering the majority of online classes in the state and the latter offering most of the in-class opportunities.

 Job Outlook for Nursing Students in South Dakota

South Dakota’s overall job market is in a state of great health — better than most in the country. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports the unemployment rate to be 4.3%, which rivals the lowest states in the nation. The trends also show that it is still slowly declining over the last year.

In addition to this great news, there are also clues that South Dakota’s nursing industry is benefiting in much the same way that the nursing field has benefited in other rural areas.

The trend is that the nursing field usually experiences a high concentration of jobs in rural areas compared to the rest of the country, and thankfully for South Dakota nursing students, it holds true in this state as well.

Registered nurses and licensed practical nurses are both employed at much higher rates than in other parts of the country, which will help any South Dakota nursing students who are pursuing ASNs or BSNs. But the real benefit of working in a rural area is that these under-served communities usually have an incredibly high demand for MSN-prepared nurses.

Nurse anesthetists, for example, are employed at almost 3 times the rate they usually are, which makes South Dakota a great area for nurses who have pursued their graduate education.

Licensing for Nurses in South Dakota

Like in other states, nurses in South Dakota must have a degree from an accredited institution and must also pass their NCLEX exams before getting a license. South Dakota enforces no other licensing requirements.

Income Data for Nurses in South Dakota

Data from BLS 2012 10th Percentile 50th Percentile 90th Percentile
Nursing Instructors and Teachers
Employment: 210
LQ: 1.20
$42,580 $58,760 $89,240
Registered Nurses
Employment: 11,030
LQ: 1.37
$39,840 $50,420 $71,710
Nurse Anesthetists
Employment: 290
LQ: 2.75
$130,060 $165,210 – *
Nurse Practitioners
Employment: 350
LQ: 1.08
$69,500 $88,200 $112,700
Employment: 2,100
LQ: 0.95
$26,410 $34,160 $43,520

* Double dashes (–) indicate data not available.

Nursing Programs in Oregon

Oregon’s nurses look out on a veritable land of opportunity in employment, including some of the most well-paid positions in the country. The state has set specific goals for increasing the number of nurses it employs, and they’re starting at a respectable 33,000 registered nurses already.

Associate’s degrees are extremely easy to pursue in Oregon, as more than a dozen schools in the region offer some kind of program, which is far more than many other states in the country. Prospective students won’t need to travel far to attend classes for their associate’s degree.

Schools that offer BSN programs are similarly plentiful, although those trying to pursue a nursing as a second degree will only find two schools with accelerated BSN programs, and one program that offers an accelerated MSN degree.

Traditional master’s level nursing students, though, will have a lot of opportunities in Oregon, both for education and for employment. Portland itself offers two schools with well-respected master’s programs, and both now offer doctorates, which are not extremely easy to find in nursing.

Another one of the benefits of nursing in Oregon is the unusually thorough and helpful work of the Oregon State Board of Nursing, which has a website full of information for nurses of all levels – from those beginning practice to experienced nurses looking for further career information.

The OSBN has even published several booklets that lay out relevant information for nurses in the state, such as licensing expectations and the state’s “scope of practice” for nurses, which outlines the expectations and responsibilities of nurses in the state.

Other helpful organizations in the state include the Oregon Center for Nursing, a nonprofit dedicated promoting and developing a robust workforce in the state.

Job Outlook for Nurses in Oregon

Although Oregon hasn’t reached its goals on nursing employment growth, and it’s even a bit behind schedule, Oregon is committed to fostering further growth in the nursing industry, which is not only reassuring but an unheard-of blessing for most other industries. Nurses are also well paid in Oregon, with the average salary hitting $77,220 – a solid margin above the national average.

Nurse practitioners have particularly good prospects in Oregon, as a solid 46% of the current 1,900 licensed nurse practitioners are over age 55. What this means is that over the next few years, many of them will be retiring, which will create hiring gaps that need to be filled. Nurse practitioners also have slightly more freedom in Oregon than in other states, as they can prescribe medication without a collaborate practice agreement with a physician.

Average Salaries for Nurses in Oregon

Nursing salaries in Oregon are among the best in the country, with Portland-area nurses earning even more than nurses in rural parts of the state. Browse below for a table of average salaries for different types of nurses, as well as regional difference information from within the state.

Data from BLS 2011 10th Percentile 50th Percentile 90th Percentile
Registered Nurses (Statewide) $55,580.00 $77,690.00 $96,020.00
Registered Nurses (Medford) $61,380.00 $79,240.00 $93,720.00
Registered Nurses (Eastern Oregon Non-Metropolitan Area) $49,920.00 $66,650.00 $90,240.00
LPNs (Statewide) $36,060.00 $46,740.00 $58,200.00
LPNs (Medford) $34,360.00 $47,130.00 $57,980.00
LPNs (Eastern Oregon Non-Metropolitan Area) $32,020.00 $39,300.00 $46,910.00

Nurse Licensing in Oregon

Licensing in Oregon is the same as in other states in that all nurses must pass the NCLEX.

But prospective nursing students in Oregon can get a leg up by checking with the OSBN’s website, which has a catalog of all the states nursing programs and their various pass rates for the NCLEX.