Best Nursing Schools in Iowa

Best in Iowa: This guide shows you the best nursing schools in the US and the best that are located in Iowa.

Iowa is a good employer of labor in the nursing field. This is good news for new RNs and BSN grads looking for a job in the state.

To enjoy this, you have to enroll in any of the best private or public schools in the state to study and then earn a license in Iowa. We'll also see become a nurse in Iowa, .

Ready?

Let's get the ball rolling!!!

READ ALSO: Top 10 Rated Nursing Programs in America

What Is The Job Outlook For Nurses In Iowa?

The nursing profession in Iowa: Hawkeye State is projected to grow by more than 15% in the next 10 years.

What Are The Application Requirements To Apply To Nursing Schools In Iowa?

When applying to nursing schools in Iowa, there are basic requirements you need to apply if you're to get admission, here is a list of some of them;

  • ACT and/or SAT scores
  • College entrance essay(s)
  • Letter(s) of recommendation
  • High school transcript (GPA).

READ ALSO: Best Nursing Schools in Delaware 2023 | A Detailed Guide 

List Of Important Factors To Consider When Choosing A Nursing School In Iowa 

When considering a nursing school to go to in Iowa ensure this checklist below guides your choice;

  • NCLEX pass rate
  • Program outcomes
  • Cost of living on-campus or in the area
  • Type of program (BSN or associate degree)
  • Distance from hospitals for clinical practice 
  • School and nursing program acceptance rate
  • Annual tuition and total nursing program cost
  • aid, , and offered
  • School accreditation (regional and national).

ALSO READ: Best Nursing Schools in Indiana 2023 | A Detailed Guide 

Top 10 Best Nursing Schools in Iowa Today

Best Nursing Schools in Iowa

Without further ado, let's take a look at the with the best nursing programs in the US that will train you on how to become a nurse in the state.

The best nursing schools in Iowa include the following:

1. University of Dubuque

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 100%
  • Location: Dubuque, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $35,060 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (No), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (No)

The University of Dubuque is a private university founded on Presbyterian principles. It is one of the best nursing schools in Iowa, USA.

Besides teaching students to earn a degree, the University of Dubuque promotes studies in the total well-being of the mind, body, and spirit.

As a basic, this also applies to its professional full-time nursing program which is an on-campus study. The University of Dubuque school of nursing does not offer online, accelerated, or bridge nursing programs.

Its BSN program has a track record of its students doing well in NCLEX and admits just 17 students which makes it highly competitive. 

APPLY TO UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE NURSING PROGRAM 

READ ALSO: 15 Highest Paid Nursing Homes In Springfield, Missouri

2. Allen College UnityPoint Health

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 99%
  • Location: Waterloo, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $19,052 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (Yes), Accelerated (Yes), and Bridge (Yes)

Allen College UnityPoint Health has one of the best nursing programs in the US and is one of the best nursing schools in Iowa.

Its small size offers a small school college experience that encourages one-on-one learning and teaching. 

For its nursing program, Allen College UnityPoint Health has plenty of study options for nurses which include an accelerated BSN, an online RN-BSN bridge program, and the traditional BSN program which graduates 109 students. 

APPLY TO ALLEN COLLEGE UNITYPOINT HEALTH NURSING PROGRAM 

3. Dordt University

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: N/A
  • Location: Sioux Center, Iowa
  • Tuition Per Year: $31,770 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (No), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (No)

If you're looking for a private school to study nursing, Dordt College school of nursing is a great option. They are one of the best nursing schools in Iowa, USA.

Dordt College has a student population of just 1,500 students which facilitates one-on-one learning.

The nursing program offered at Dordt College is the traditional four-year BSN in which its graduates get within and outside Iowa. 

One reason to enroll in the Dordt College nursing program is the 100% career outcome rate and ease at which graduates go on to gain an MSN.

APPLY TO DORDT COLLEGE NURSING PROGRAM

4. St. Ambrose University

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 88%
  • Location: Davenport, Iowa 
  • Tuition Per Year: $31,532 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (Yes), Accelerated (Yes), and Bridge (Yes)

Next on our list of best nursing schools in Iowa state is St. Ambrose University which is a private school with a total undergraduate student population of 2,310. 

St. Ambrose University offers a wide range of nursing program options such as the traditional BSN, accelerated BSN, and online RN-BSN bridge program.

By applying to St. Ambrose University, you have a high chance of getting admission as the school accepts more nursing students than most Iowa schools. 

APPLY TO ST AMBROSE UNIVERSITY NURSING PROGRAM 

READ ALSO: Best Nursing Schools in Louisiana Today 

5. Mount Mercy University

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 95%
  • Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $35,506 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (Yes), Accelerated (Yes), and Bridge (Yes)

Mount Mercy University nursing school is preferably called the Martin-Herold College of Nursing and Health. 

One outstanding feature of the Mount Mercy University nursing program is that current high school students can apply for the school's BSN early admission. 

Also, current RNs have 3 options for the RN-BSN bridge programs:

  1. Traditional,
  2. Online,
  3. Accelerated.

Either of which lasts for five weeks. 

APPLY TO MMU MARTIN-HEROLD COLLEGE OF NURSING AND HEALTH 

6. Luther College

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 97%
  • Location: Decorah, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $45,000 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (No), Online (Yes), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (Yes)

Luther College is more of a musical school as about 2,050 students participate in musical programs that are nearly half of the school.

However, the nursing program is not relegated to the shadows hence why it is one of the best nursing programs in the US.

Its major nursing program is the traditional BSN which comes with an extra option of studying abroad in England, Malta, Italy, or Germany. 

The not-so-good news about the Luther College nursing program is the cost of tuition. But, they are one of the best nursing schools in Iowa, USA.

APPLY TO LUTHER COLLEGE NURSING PROGRAM 

7. Northwestern College

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 87%
  • Location: Orange City, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $32,100 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (Yes), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (Yes)

Northwestern College is a small private Christian school in Orange City with a little over 1,000 undergraduate students.

Its nursing program is acknowledged as exceptional making it one of the best nursing schools in the US.

Its program includes an online RN-BSN and a traditional BSN which takes students to cities such as Iowa City, Sioux Falls, SD, and Normal, IL. 

APPLY TO NORTHWESTERN COLLEGE NURSING PROGRAM 

READ ALSO: Top 10 Best Nursing Schools in Maryland 

8. Coe College

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 90%
  • Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $46,870 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (No), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (No)

Coe College is an elite school although small in terms of population. Its prominence earns its title as one of the best nursing schools in the US.

As a custodian of one of the top nursing programs in Iowa, Coe College has a selective admission policy for nurses and is known for educating outstanding nurses.

Nursing students at Coe College have options of studying abroad in Korea, England, or Tanzania and a 100% chance of getting employed or getting into graduate school within 12 months of graduation. 

APPLY TO COE COLLEGE NURSING PROGRAM 

9. Morningside College 

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 88%
  • Location: Sioux City, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $32,720 (All Nursing Students) 
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (Yes), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (No)

Morningside College BSN students complete their degrees and clinical in Sioux City.

The school offers online graduate nursing degrees which makes it a good option if you want to earn an MSN or doctoral degree.

Also, Morningside College is affordable for full-time undergraduate students. 

APPLY TO MORNINGSIDE COLLEGE NURSING PROGRAM 

10. University of Iowa

  • NCLEX Pass Rate: 96%
  • Location: Iowa City, Iowa.
  • Tuition Per Year: $9,830 (In-state), $31,793 (Out-of-State)
  • Mode of Nursing Program Offered: Traditional (Yes), Online (Yes), Accelerated (No), and Bridge (Yes)

The University of Iowa is one of the top public research institutions in the US that houses one of the best nursing programs in the US, for students at every level.

Its major nursing program is the 3+1 RN-BSN online bridge option which allows students to complete a three-year degree through an Iowa community college and then finishes their BSN through the University of Iowa. 

One reason to enroll in the University of Iowa is its affordability.

APPLY TO UIOWA NURSING PROGRAM 

ALSO READ: Best Nursing Schools in Illinois 2023 | A Detailed Guide 

FAQs on The Best Nursing Schools In Iowa 

How Many Nurses Are Working In Iowa State?

Iowa employs 33,770 nurses currently employed. So, do you want to know how to become a nurse in Iowa?

Which Nursing Schools in Iowa Offer ADN Programs?

Here is a list of the best schools to pursue an associate degree program in nursing in Iowa;

– St Luke's College – Sioux City
– Northeast Iowa Community College – Peosta
– Southwestern Community College – Creston
– Kirkwood Community College – Cedar Rapids
– Iowa Central Community College – Fort Dodge
– Des Moines Area Community College – Ankeny
– North Iowa Area Community College – Mason City
– Marshalltown Community College – Marshalltown
– Southeastern Community College – West Burlington
– Eastern Iowa Community College District – Davenport

What Is The Salary Structure Of Nurses In Iowa?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), RNs in Iowa earn 59,130 annually which is lower than the national mean wage of $75,510.

However, state data shows that all RNs in Iowa and nurses with a BSN can earn depending on their level of experience, exposure and degree.

How Do I Get a License To Practice Nursing in Iowa?

After completing your BSN, the next step is to get your license.

Currently, Iowa is a member of the Enhanced Nursing Licensure Compact (eNLC) which means your nursing license can be used anywhere in the state.

To get your nursing license, here are the steps to take;

– Study at a state board-approved program
– Take and pass the NCLEX-RN.
– Submit electronic fingerprints and pass a criminal background check.
– Pay an application fee and complete an application through the Iowa Board of Nursing.

What Are The Official Accreditation Bodies Of Nursing Schools In Iowa?

The two nursing accreditation organizations to look for when choosing a nursing school in Iowa are;

– Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
– Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)

If a school is accredited by one of these institutions, then its nursing program adheres to strict national standards.

READ ALSO: Best Nursing Schools in Alabama 2023 | A Detailed Guide 

Conclusion

There you have it, the top 10 best nursing schools in Iowa, USA. It's now up to you to good use of this information and select from the best colleges for nurses in Iowa, USA.

References

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