Nursing Schools in Kentucky – KY | Colleges | Degree | Education

Nursing Schools in Kentucky – KY

Those considering nursing careers in Kentucky have something to celebrate: Kentucky is expected to see an increase in the employment of registered nurses (RNs), according to data from the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration. Also, a report by the Kentucky Center for Statistics predicts that 30,350 total openings for RNs may be available to aspiring nurses during this same period. Employment trends for qualified nurses in Kentucky therefore appear to be promising.

To begin a nursing career in Kentucky, you may first need to get the necessary educational qualifications. Several Kentucky nursing schools have exciting nursing degree programs available. For guidance on nursing qualifications and careers, you can read Nursing Education, Schools and Career Overview.

For those who want to explore nursing schools in Kentucky, this summary of nursing degree programs, financial aid programs, licensure and certification in Kentucky may prove useful.

What nursing schools are there in Kentucky?

You can find a wide choice of nursing schools in Kentucky at which to begin your nursing career. Most schools are accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and their nursing degree programs are generally approved by the Kentucky Board of Nursing. A few of the nursing schools in Kentucky include:

  • Bellarmine University
  • Galen College of Nursing Louisville
  • Spalding University
  • University of Kentucky
  • University of Louisville

We have compiled the following overview of nursing degree programs in Kentucky for you to refer to.

  • A two-year Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) degree in nursing from a school such as Galen College of Nursing Louisville can give you a good start in your nursing career as an RN.
  • To learn the foundational skills of patient care and to prepare for graduate study, you could complete a four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program from schools such as Spalding University, Bellarmine University, University of Kentucky, and University of Louisville.
  • Some schools such as Galen College of Nursing Louisville, Spalding University, Bellarmine University and University of Kentucky offer accelerated BSN degree programs for non-nursing baccalaureates. These programs generally take 12-36 months to complete.
  • The online RN to BSN degree program at Galen College of Nursing Louisville, Spalding University, University of Kentucky, and University of Louisville can be completed in one to two years.
  • Licensed practical nurses (LPNs) who want to advance in their careers can pursue either the LPN-to-ADN bridge program in 15-18 months from Galen College of Nursing, or the LPN-to-BSN degree program in 20-22 months from University of Kentucky.
  • Schools such as Galen College of Nursing, Spalding University, Bellarmine University, University of Kentucky, and University of Louisville offer Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree programs in varying specialties and in online or hybrid formats.
  • A Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree is a terminal qualification in nursing practice that aims to prepare nurse leaders. You could explore online MSN-DNP degree programs for MSN degree holders from schools such as Spalding University, Bellarmine University, University of Kentucky, and University of Louisville.
  • The goal of a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree program is to prepare students to conduct clinical research related to nursing science and serve in various advanced roles. Schools such as University of Kentucky and University of Louisville may have MSN to PhD degree program in nursing for MSN degree holders as well as a BSN to PhD degree program for BSN graduates.

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

Kentucky nursing students can apply for various financial aid programs such as federal and state loans, grants, or work-study programs. Scholarships alsomay be available to students who meet their eligibility criteria. Some nursing scholarships in Kentucky are:

  • Nursing Incentive Scholarship Fund — for Kentucky residents admitted to approved prelicensure or graduate nursing programs. Applicants with financial need, LPNs pursuing RN education, and RNs pursuing BSN and graduate nursing education may be preferred.
  • Kentucky Coalition of Nurse Practitioners and Nurse-Midwives Scholarship — for students who are either Kentucky residents or are enrolled in a Kentucky nursing program, and who are current members of the Kentucky Coalition of Nurse Practitioners and Nurse-Midwives.
  • Nursing Excellence Scholarship and Mildred Metz Scholarship — for students enrolled in an accredited pre-licensure ADN or BSN program within the Commonwealth and who have completed one semester of nursing coursework.

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

You may apply for certification as an advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) before being granted a license. An APRN may be designated by the Kentucky Board of Nursing as a certified nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, certified registered nurse anesthetist, or clinical nurse specialist. Nursing certification in Kentucky is usually approved by the board provided it is granted by one the following board-recognized national certifying organizations:

  • American Association of Critical-Care Nurses
  • National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists
  • American Association of Nurse Practitioners
  • American Midwifery Certification Board
  • American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • National Certification Corporation
  • Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation
  • Pediatric Nursing Certification Board

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

You may need a nursing license to practice nursing in Kentucky. The Kentucky Board of Nursing may grant RN licenses to qualified candidates who have passed the National Council of State Boards of Nursing Licensing Examination (NCLEX). To apply for a license by examination, you typically need to:

  • Submit an examination application and fee
  • Include a Kentucky criminal background report
  • Submit a fingerprint card and fee payable to the Kentucky State Police
  • Complete the online Kentucky Jurisprudence Exam
  • Submit an official transcript of the approved nursing program with degree and date degree posted
  • Register for the NCLEX with Pearson Vue along with your Social Security number
  • Schedule and appear for the examination once you receive an authorization to test (ATT) by email

Eligible applicants may be awarded provisional licenses, which are valid for six months, allowing them to practice nursing under supervision.

Nurses in Kentucky renew their licenses by the end of October every year. According to Kentucky Nursing Laws, RNs need to complete 14 contact hours of continuing education or their equivalent to be eligible to renew their nursing licenses in Kentucky. An APRN's current national certification along with the completion of five contact hours in pharmacology may satisfy CE requirements.

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

Armed with a suitable nursing degree and licensure, you can be qualified for different nursing jobs in Kentucky. Nursing salaries in Kentucky are substantial and job prospects in the state appear to be positive. In fact, the Huntington-Ashland metropolitan area spanning West Virginia, Kentucky and Ohio ranks among the top metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of RN jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You could explore various nursing roles in places such as Clarksville, Fort Knox or Cincinnati.

Let's see details of a few nursing careers in Kentucky based on projected job growth, salaries and employment rates.

CareerTotal EmploymentStatewide Projected Job Growth Rate
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses9,7907.6%
Nurse AnesthetistsN/A14.3%
Nurse Midwives7020%
Nurse Practitioners3,62032.7%
Nursing Assistants22,2808.1%
Registered Nurses43,84012.2%
2019 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2018-28 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

CareerAnnual Mean WageBottom 10% Annual WageTop 10% Annual Wage
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses$42,740$32,660$54,300
Nurse Anesthetists$167,400$120,680>$208,000
Nurse Midwives$105,890$85,930$141,720
Nurse Practitioners$99,560$68,510$133,610
Nursing Assistants$27,280$20,850$35,430
Registered Nurses$63,750$44,660$83,060
2019 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2018-28 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Sources:

  • Bellarmine University, Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing, on the Internet at https://www.bellarmine.edu/health-professions/second-degree-programs/accelerated-bachelor-of-science-in-nursing/(accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Bellarmine University, Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Online, on the Internet at https://www.bellarmine.edu/health-professions/graduate/doctor-of-nursing-practice/ (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Bellarmine University, Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Online, on the Internet at https://www.bellarmine.edu/health-professions/graduate/master-of-science-in-nursing/ (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Galen College of Nursing, Associate Degree in Nursing, on the Internet at https://galencollege.edu/nursing-programs/associate-degree-nursing (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Galen College of Nursing, 3-Year Bachelor of Science in Nursing, on the Internet at https://galencollege.edu/nursing-programs/3-year-bachelor-science-nursing-bsn (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Galen College of Nursing, Online MSN, Nurse Educator Track, on the Internet at https://galencollege.edu/nursing-programs/online-msn-nurse-educator-track (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Kentucky Association of Nurse Practitioners and Nurse-Midwives, Kentucky Coalition of Nurse Practitioners and Nurse-Midwives Scholarship, Scholarship Rules, on the Internet at https://www.kcnpnm.org/page/schol_rules (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Kentucky Board of Nursing, Licensure by Examination, on the Internet at https://kbn.ky.gov/apply/Pages/Examination/examination.aspx (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Kentucky Board of Nursing, Nursing Incentive Scholarship Fund, on the Internet at https://kbn.ky.gov/nisf/Pages/default.aspx (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Kentucky Center for Statistics, "Kentucky Occupational Outlook to 2026", published September 2018, on the Internet at https://kystats.ky.gov/Content/Reports/2016-2026%20KY%20Occupational%20Outlook.pdf (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Kentucky General Assembly, Kentucky Revised Statutes, Chapter 314, 314.042 License to practice as an advanced practice registered nurse -- Application -- Renewal -- Reinstatement -- Use of "APRN" -- Prescriptive authority under CAPA-NS and CAPA-CS -- Exemption from CAPA-NS requirement -- Administrative regulations, on the Internet at https://apps.legislature.ky.gov/law/statutes/statute.aspx?id=48249 (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Kentucky Nurses Association, Scholarships, on the Internet at https://kentucky-nurses.nursingnetwork.com/page/93188-scholarships (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Projections Central - State Occupational Projections, Long Term, Occupational Projections (2016-2026), on the Internet at https://projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Spalding University, Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), on the Internet at https://www.spalding.edu/nursing/bachelor-of-science-in-nursing/ (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • Spalding University, Doctor of Nursing Practice Online, on the Internet at https://www.spalding.edu/nursing/doctor-of-nursing-practice/ (accessed on 31 October, 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 31 October, 2019)
  • University of Kentucky, Master of Science in Nursing, on the Internet at https://www.uky.edu/nursing/academic-programs-ce/graduate/master-science-nursing (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • University of Kentucky, Doctor of Nursing Practice, on the Internet at https://www.uky.edu/nursing/academic-programs-ce/graduate/doctor-nursing-practice (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • University of Louisville, Academic Catalogs 2019-2020, Nursing, on the Internet athttps://catalog.louisville.edu/undergraduate/majors/nursing-pre-licensure-program-bsn/ (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • University of Louisville, Academic Catalogs 2019-2020, Nursing Practice (DNP), on the Internet at https://catalog.louisville.edu/graduate/programs-study/doctor-nursing-practice/#text (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
  • University of Louisville, Academic Catalogs 2019-2020, on the Internet at https://catalog.louisville.edu/graduate/programs-study/doctor-philosophy-nursing/#text (accessed on 31 October, 2019)
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