Nursing Schools in Florida – FL | Colleges | Degree | Education

Nursing Schools in Florida – FL

Florida ranks among the top five states with the highest levels of employment for registered nurses, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. As of 2018, the median age in the state was 42 years and over 20% of the population in the state was above the age of 65. With an aging population, the demand for healthcare facilities and professions such as nurses is likely to be high. Thus, Florida may be an ideal state to start your nursing career.

For a nursing career in Florida, you may first need a nursing qualification that aligns with your career path. Different nursing schools in Florida offer nursing degree programs at various levels -- from associate to doctoral -- and in on-campus, online and hybrid formats. Check out Nursing Education, Schools and Career Overview to find detailed information about the qualifications required for a successful nursing career.

What nursing schools are there in Florida?

Nursing schools in Florida are regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The following are examples of accredited nursing schools in Florida for you to explore.

  • Chipola College
  • Florida Gateway College
  • Jacksonville University
  • University of Florida
  • University of Miami
  • University of South Florida

Below we discuss various nursing degree programs in greater detail.

  • If you are a high school graduate aiming to enter the nursing profession as a registered nurse (RN), an Associate in Science in Nursing (ASN) that may be completed in about 1-2 years from schools such as Florida Gateway College or Chipola College may be a good choice. Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) may qualify as RNs through the LPN-to-RN bridge program from Florida Gateway College.
  • For a sound foundation in nursing skills, you may complete a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program from a school such as University of Florida, University of Miami or Jacksonville University.
  • Candidates with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field can qualify as nurses in around 12-16 months by completing an accelerated BSN. This program may be available at schools such as University of Florida, University of Miami, Jacksonville University and University of South Florida.
  • An exceptional program called the Veteran to Bachelor's (V-CARE) major that leads to a BSN may be available from University of South Florida for medically trained service members and veterans.
  • RNs with an ASN degree may advance their careers by completing an RN-to-BSN degree program in around 18 months to three years. This program may be offered as an online degree program by schools such as University of Florida, University of Miami, Jacksonville University, University of South Florida, Florida Gateway College and Chipola College.
  • A Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree program that helps RNs to qualify as advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) may be offered by schools such as University of Miami, Jacksonville University and University of South Florida. This program may take about 1.5-4 years to complete. Jacksonville University may additionally offer MSN cohort majors taught at local hospitals as well as an online MSN in certain specializations. If you are a practicing RN, you may be able to earn both your BSN and MSN at the same time through the fully online RN to MSN degree program at Jacksonville University.
  • A Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree program that may prepare nurses for specialized advanced practice roles and leadership positions may be available from schools such as University of Florida, University of Miami, Jacksonville University and University of South Florida. These DNP programs may be available in on-campus, online or hybrid formats and may take around 2.5-4 years to complete. These schools may also offer a BSN-to-DNP degree program for BSN graduates.
  • To qualify to conduct research that advances nursing science, you may pursue a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree in nursing from schools such as University of Florida, University of Miami and University of South Florida. Some schools may also have BSN to PhD, MSN to PhD and DNP to PhD pathways.

What financial aid can I get for nursing programs in Florida?

Nursing students in Florida may apply for federal and state financial aid such as grants, loans, work-study programs and scholarships as long as they meet the relevant eligibility criteria. Here are a few examples of nursing scholarships in Florida.

  • Florida Navy Nurse Corps Association Scholarships — for baccalaureate, graduate or APRN students who are Florida residents and either have a military background or are related to military personnel.
  • Florida Nurses Association Scholarships — for nursing students at different levels who have resided in Florida for at least one year.
  • Florida Association of Nurse Anesthetists Student Scholarship Award — may be awarded to a nurse anesthesia student from an accredited program in Florida.
  • Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation Scholarship — for female students with financial need pursuing an undergraduate degree in Florida and other states. The Foundation has a special interest in the medical, nursing and allied health fields.

What do I need to know about certifications in nursing in Florida?

Nursing certification in Florida is generally provided by the Florida Board of Nursing. Registered nurses who have been trained as certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA), certified nurse midwife (CNM), certified nurse practitioner (CNP) or psychiatric nurse may qualify as APRNs. To apply for APRN certification, you may need to first complete a graduate-level nursing program in your preferred specialization. The Board usually accepts APRN candidates with national certification from one of the following agencies:

  • American Academy of Nurse Practitioners
  • American Association of Critical-Care Nurses
  • American College of Nurse Midwives
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • Hospice and Palliative Credentialing Center
  • National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists
  • National Certification Corporation
  • Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation
  • Pediatric Nursing Certification Board

APRNs may also apply to become dispensing practitioners.

Do I need a nursing license in Florida? How do I apply for it?

Aspiring RNs may have to pass the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to be eligible for a nursing license in Florida. Candidates may be required to do the following.

  • Submit an application and the appropriate fees to the Board and begin registration with Pearson VUE, the testing vendor.
  • Undergo electronic fingerprinting.
  • Submit any further information that may be requested.
  • Appear for the licensure examination once approved.

Initial licensure for those who pass the examination may be issued within 7-10 days.

Additionally, in 2016, Florida joined the enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC), an interstate agreement that allows nurses to practice in any of the participating compact states with one license. RNs who hold a valid license in another state may also apply for licensure by additionally requesting the licensing board in their state to send verification of their licenses to the Florida Board of Nursing.

Nursing licenses in Florida may need to be renewed every two years. Practicing RNs may need to complete up to thirty continuing education hours biennially to be eligible for license renewal. APRNs may additionally need to maintain current national certification.

What can I do with a degree in nursing in Florida?

Equipped with the relevant qualifications and licensure, you may be qualified for a number of exciting nursing careers in Florida. You may secure a position as a registered nurse anesthetist at a hospital in Fort Lauderdale, a certified nurse midwife at a nursing home in Tallahassee or a certified nurse practitioner at a clinic in Jacksonville.

Here is an overview of various nursing careers in Florida based on projected job growth, salaries and employment rates.

CareerTotal EmploymentStatewide Projected Job Growth Rate
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses47,54019.1%
Nurse Anesthetists2,18027.2%
Nurse Midwives33025%
Nurse Practitioners10,59044.8%
Nursing Assistants89,86017.4%
Registered Nurses177,60021.4%
2018 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

CareerAnnual Mean WageBottom 10% Annual WageTop 10% Annual Wage
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses$44,400$33,590$57,020
Nurse Anesthetists$177,390$86,000>$208,000
Nurse Midwives$88,060$36,580$122,360
Nurse Practitioners$101,100$67,040$129,970
Nursing Assistants$26,840$20,740$34,800
Registered Nurses$66,210$47,070$88,630
2018 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Sources:

  • American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, 2019 AANA Foundation Scholarship Program, on the Internet at https://www.aana.com/docs/default-source/foundation-aana-com-web-documents-(all)/fy19_list_of_student_scholarships-final-fn-and-merit.pdf?sfvrsn=ba9051b1_2 (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Selected Age Groups by Sex for the United States, States, Counties, and Puerto Rico Commonwealth and Municipios: 2018 Population Estimates, Florida, on the Internet at https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=CF (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Chipola College, Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Program, on the Internet at http://www.chipola.edu/instruct/Health-Sciences/ADN.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Chipola College, The RN to BSN Online Nursing Program Handbook, on the Internet at http://www.chipola.edu/studentservices/cguides/2019-2020/Bachelors/Nursing%20RN%20to%20BSN%20CC.pdf (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Administrative Code & Florida Administrative Register, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) Application, Requirements for Licensure, on the Internet at https://www.flrules.org/Gateway/reference.asp?No=Ref-10299 (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Board of Nursing, Licensing, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse, on the Internet at https://floridasnursing.gov/licensing/advanced-practice-registered-nurse/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Board of Nursing, Licensing, Licensed Practical Nurse & Registered Nurse by Endorsement, on the Internet at https://floridasnursing.gov/licensing/licensed-practical-nurse-registered-nurse-by-endorsement/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Board of Nursing, Licensing, Licensed Practical Nurse & Registered Nurse by Examination, on the Internet at https://floridasnursing.gov/licensing/licensed-practical-nurse-registered-nurse-by-examination/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Board of Nursing, Licensure by Examination FAQs, on the Internet at https://floridasnursing.gov/nursing-faqs/licensure-by-examination/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Board of Nursing, Renewals, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN), on the Internet at https://floridasnursing.gov/renewals/advanced-practice-registered-nurse/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Gateway College, Health Sciences, on the Internet at https://www.fgc.edu/discover/academic-programs/health-sciences/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Gateway College, LPN to RN Bridge: Fast-Track Part-Time, A.S., on the Internet at http://catalog.fgc.edu/preview_program.php?catoid=14&poid=1764&returnto=1048 (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Gateway College, LPN to RN Bridge: Traditional Full-Time, A.S., on the Internet at http://catalog.fgc.edu/preview_program.php?catoid=14&poid=1763&returnto=1048 (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Navy Nurse Corps Association, on the Internet at https://nnca.org/join-nnca-2/local-chapters/fnnca/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Nurses Association, Scholarships & Grants, on the Internet at https://www.floridanurse.org/page/ScholarshipsGrants (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Florida Nurses Association, Scholarship Guidelines, on the Internet at https://cdn.ymaws.com/www.floridanurse.org/resource/resmgr/fnf_scholarshipguidelines_20.pdf (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Second Degree Program, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/undergraduate/second-degree-program.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Doctor of Nursing Practice, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/graduate/doctor-nursing-practice/index.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Keigwin School of Nursing, Programs, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/programs/index.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Master of Science in Nursing, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/graduate/master-science-nursing/index.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Online Master of Science in Nursing, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/graduate/master-science-nursing/online/online-msn.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Online RN BSN, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/undergraduate/online-rn-bsn.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Jacksonville University, Online RN MSN, on the Internet at https://www.ju.edu/nursing/graduate/master-science-nursing/online/online-rn-msn.php (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • Lettie Pate Whitehead Foundation, Scholarship Program, on the Internet at https://lpwhitehead.org/grants-program/scholarship-program/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • The 2017 Florida Statutes, Regulation Of Professions And Occupations, Nursing, Renewal of license or certificate, on the Internet at http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?mode=View%20Statutes&SubMenu=1&App_mode=Display_Statute&Search_String=464.013&URL=0400-0499/0464/Sections/0464.013.html&StatuteYear=2017 (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • United State Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2018, Registered Nurses, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291141.htm (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • United State Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2018 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates, Florida, on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_fl.htm (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • United States Census Bureau, Quick Facts, Florida, on the Internet at https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/FL/AGE775218 (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Florida, Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), on the Internet at https://nursing.ufl.edu/programs/doctor-of-nursing-practice-dnp/#about (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Florida, PhD in Nursing Sciences, on the Internet at https://nursing.ufl.edu/programs/phd-in-nursing-sciences/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Florida, RN to BSN, on the Internet at https://nursing.ufl.edu/programs/bachelor-of-science-bsn/rn-to-bsn/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Florida, Traditional BSN, on the Internet at https://nursing.ufl.edu/programs/bachelor-of-science-bsn/traditional-bsn/ (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Miami, Accelerated BSN, on the Internet at https://acceleratedbsn.sonhs.miami.edu/program-highlights/index.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Miami, BSN-DNP Nurse Anesthesia Track, on the Internet at https://anesthesia.sonhs.miami.edu/index.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Miami, Doctor of Nursing Practice, on the Internet at https://dnp.sonhs.miami.edu/program-highlights/index.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Miami, Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing, on the Internet at https://phd.sonhs.miami.edu/index.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Miami, RN-To-BSN, on the Internet at https://rntobsn.sonhs.miami.edu/program-highlights/index.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of Miami, School of Nursing and Health Studies, Bachelor's Programs, on the Internet at https://www.sonhs.miami.edu/academics/bachelors-programs/index.html (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of South Florida, College of Nursing, Accelerated Second Degree, on the Internet at https://health.usf.edu/nursing/undergraduate/programs/second-degree (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of South Florida, College of Nursing, Veteran to Bachelor's (V-CARE), on the Internet at https://health.usf.edu/nursing/undergraduate/programs/vbsn (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of South Florida, College of Nursing, Graduate Programs, on the Internet at https://health.usf.edu/nursing/graduate/programs (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of South Florida, RN to BS, on the Internet at https://health.usf.edu/nursing/undergraduate/programs/rn-to-bs (accessed on 28 August, 2019)
  • University of South Florida, Master of Science in Nursing, on the Internet at https://health.usf.edu/nursing/graduate/programs/masters (accessed on 28 August, 2019)

Nursing Schools