America’s Seven Top Nursing Schools

Choosing the right school can make all the difference in your nursing career. Knowledgeable, supportive instructors are the key to any good nursing education, and the stronger a school is in the department you want to specialize in, the easier it will be for you to pursue the nursing field of your dreams. If you’re not sure where to specialize yet, it’s generally better to choose a larger school that will give you exposure to many different fields—and is likely to have a strong department in the field you choose. Following is a list of seven of the most well-respected nursing schools in America.

University of Washington School of Nursing. Consistently ranked the top nursing school in the country, the University of Washington School of Nursing has the largest number of fellows in the American Academy of Nursing, which is a distinct honor. It also has global partnerships and opportunities for nurses to study and work abroad, a cutting-edge research program, and its graduates are among the top qualified graduates in their fields.

UCSF School of Nursing. Located at the University of California—San Francisco, this nursing school places particular emphasis on community outreach. This school also has a strong research program. It received the most research funding from the National Institutes of Health for two years in a row, in 2003 and 2004.

University of Texas School of Nursing. Ranked among the top 10% of graduate schools in U.S. News and World Report’s 2005 survey, the University of Texas School of Nursing continues to get high marks. According to the school, they have one of the most diverse populations of students in any U.S. nursing school—as well as high student achievement and extraordinary faculty dedication.

University of Virginia School of Nursing. Another top-10% school in the U.S. News and World Report, this school’s ratings have gone up consistently every year. Within the school, the Psychiatric/Mental Health and Adult/Medical-Surgical specialties were given particularly high ranks.

University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing. This program was ranked 19th in the country in the U.S. News and World Report for the 2005-2006 year. High-ranking specialties include internal medicine, women’s health, geriatrics and pediatrics, and AIDS care, which was ranked 4th in the nation.

University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing. Located in Philadelphia, this school was founded in 1740 by Ben Franklin and continues to be one of the nation’s top nursing schools. It boasts a low student-to-faculty ratio, lifelong free career support to graduates, and world-class faculty. The school’s website states that 95% of its nursing students pass the boards on the first try.

University of Michigan—Ann Arbor School of Nursing. Another consistently top-ranked school, the University of Michigan’s nursing school has one of the most extensive libraries in the country. It’s located next to the University of Michigan Medical Health Center, with a strong emphasis on clinical application.

Nursing is an exciting, challenging, and rewarding career. The right school can launch you into a successful nursing career, and give you the support you need to succeed along the way. There are thousands of great nursing schools in America—and these seven are among the best of the best.