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Best Nursing Schools in the U.S.

by Adren Setian
April 27, 2023
7 min read
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Obtaining an undergraduate degree in nursing is an exciting and important step in the process of becoming a nurse. Nursing is one of the most popular majors in the United States, and there are many nursing schools throughout the country where you can choose to study. You can get a nursing degree at schools all over the country, and choosing the right school can seem like an impossible task.

Aside from school rankings when choosing a nursing school, there are many factors to consider, but it is important to be informed about the most prestigious nursing schools. This article has compiled a list of the top nursing schools in the US.

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Top 15 Nursing Schools in the US for 2023

New York University

New York, NY

Tuition: $45,417

Acceptance rate: 21%

New York University hosts a nursing program focusing on the patient's perspective in healthcare systems.

Duke University

Durham, NC

Tuition: $26,932

Acceptance rate: 8%

Duke University is home to some of the most highly-ranked nursing programs in the country.

Georgetown University

Washington, DC

Tuition: $93,500

Acceptance rate: 17%

Georgetown University offers opportunities for nursing students to obtain their bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctoral degree.

Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD

Tuition: $25,241

Acceptance rate: 11%

Johns Hopkins University is one of the most well-known universities in the United States for studying health sciences and healthcare-related fields.

University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

Tuition: $24,167

Acceptance rate: 9%

University of Pennsylvania is home to Penn Nursing, ranked as the best nursing school in the world. The School of Nursing focuses on holistic education, including research, education, practice, and policy in their programs.

University of Michigan Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI

Tuition: $17,832

Acceptance rate: 26%

University of Michigan Ann Arbor hosts the University of Michigan School of Nursing. The school's program emphasizes high-impact research and creating nurses ready to address healthcare's biggest challenges.

University of California Los Angeles

Los Angeles, CA

Tuition: $16,474

Acceptance rate: 14%

The University of California Los Angeles is one of the top public universities in the nation and has an excellent nursing school to match their prestige. The UCLA School of Nursing offers opportunities to complete a bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor of nursing practice degree program.

University of Washington

Seattle, WA

Tuition: $9,661

Acceptance rate: 56%

The University of Washington hosts one of the top nursing schools among public institutions and has been rated number one for its Doctor of nursing practice and Master's Degree program.

Emory University

Atlanta, GA

Tuition: $25,672

Acceptance rate: 19%

Emory University is home to the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing. The Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing is ranked second among undergraduate nursing schools.

University of Maryland Baltimore

Baltimore, MD

Tuition: $10,446

Acceptance rate: 69%

The University of Maryland Baltimore has highly ranked programs among nursing schools. It has the third-ranked Bachelor of Science in Nursing program.

Check out these scholarships in Maryland to increase your financial aid!

nursing schools to apply for

Villanova University

Villanova, PA

Tuition: $38,303

Acceptance rate: 31%

Villanova University is home to the M Louise Fitzpatrick College of Nursing. This nursing school is dedicated to building nursing science that informs practice.

University of Rochester

Rochester, NY

Tuition: $36,254

Acceptance rate: 35%

University of Rochester's School of Nursing is a national leader in nursing, seeking to continue its tradition of blending education, research, and practice for its nursing students. Their graduate programs are highly ranked nationally.

University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA

Tuition: $19,043

Acceptance rate: 23%

The University of Virginia has one of the best nursing schools in the country. It provides undergraduate students with many opportunities and has graduate programs and opportunities for continuing education.

University of Miami

Coral Gables, FL

Tuition: $31,726

Acceptance rate: 33%

The University of Miami's School of Nursing and Health Studies is ranked among the best nursing schools in the nation. The school of nursing provides diverse opportunities to undergraduate students.

Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA

Tuition: $30,192

Acceptance rate: 26%

Boston College is home to the Connell School of Nursing. The school seeks to transform health care in hospitals, community clinics, research labs, and classrooms.

Additional Noteworthy Schools

Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH

Tuition: $36,002

Acceptance rate: 30%

Thomas Jefferson University

Philadelphia, PA

Tuition: $29,255

Acceptance rate: 70%

Columbia University

New York, NY

Tuition: $22,126

Acceptance rate: 7%

Ohio State University

Columbus, OH

Tuition: $18,884

Acceptance rate: 68%

nursing schools to consider

Nursing School Scholarships on has many nursing school scholarships that are available for nursing students to apply to. Below are some examples of the hundreds of opportunities you can find at

Create a profile and use the scholarship search feature to access hundreds of exclusive scholarships.

Dashanna K. McNeil Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $1,220; 1st winner: $408, 2nd winner: $406, 3rd winner: $406

For: High school, associate's, bachelor's, or master's students who are planning to attend an accredited nursing institution to pursue nursing or a related field as a career

Deadline: July 1, 2023

This scholarship aims to honor the life of Dashanna K. McNeil by encouraging those who share her commitment to healing to continue in their Nursing studies.

Rosalia A. Dupont (Young) Nursing Scholarship

Amount: $1,250

For: High school seniors, undergraduate, or graduate students who are studying Nursing

Deadline: July 15, 2023

This scholarship seeks to honor the memory of Rosalie A. Dupont (Young) by supporting students pursuing vital careers in nursing.

Dr. Ifeoma Ezebuiro Ezeobele Africans in Nursing Scholarship

Amount: $1,000

For: Undergraduate or graduate students who are Black/African American and are studying Nursing

Deadline: October 16, 2023

This scholarship aims to honor the legacy of Dr. Ifeoma Ezebuiro Ezeobel by supporting African American students passionate about nursing.

Sara Jane Memorial Scholarship

Amount: $2,000

For: High school seniors or undergraduate students who have experience volunteering and are planning to become a registered nurse (RN) or a licensed practical nurse (LPN)

Deadline: August 15, 2023

This scholarship will support a high school senior or undergraduate student pursuing a nursing career.

Kate Szuberla Jauch Scholarship

Amount: $13,540; 2 winners: $6,770 each

For: High school seniors or undergraduate students who are from Maryland and are studying Nursing

Deadline: September 15, 2023

This scholarship seeks to honor the memory of Kate Szuberla Jauch by supporting future nurses as they complete their education.


If nursing doesn't seem like the right career path for you, but you are still interested in healthcare, there are other disciplines you can study. Some of the most popular related courses of study include:

Medical Assisting

Medical assistants work in similar settings to nurses, often working alongside doctors. Unlike nurses, they usually have a mix of clinical and administrative duties when it comes to caring for patients and often provide more basic types of care. Medical assistants need to get a certificate or attend an associate degree program.

Health Sciences

If you are more interested in less hands-on and more behind-the-scenes work, the health sciences is an excellent alternative major to nursing. Career outcomes for health science majors include medical researchers, health educators, and dietitians.

Respiratory Therapy

Respiratory therapists care for people with breathing conditions, such as asthma, emphysema, bronchitis, and other similar conditions. This is a great option if you want to specialize in a specific area in the medical field. You can get started by attending an associate's degree program in respiratory care.

Occupational Therapy Assisting

Occupational therapy assistants (OTAs) are similar to nurses, taking care of patients, but have a different set of duties to perform. OTAs provide care that helps patients develop skills and motor functions to overcome any condition they have which is disrupting their day-to-day functioning.


If you are more interested in research and lab work and staying behind the scenes instead of being hands-on with patients, histology might be your field of study. Histology majors can pursue a postsecondary certificate or associate degree program.

schools for nursing

Frequently asked questions about Nursing Schools

What are the biggest challenges for nursing students?

Due to the workload of nursing students, some of their biggest challenges are time management and avoiding burnout. Balancing coursework with clinical work can be difficult for students. The National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) is a huge pressure source throughout a nursing student's career.

What courses do nursing students take at nursing schools?

Nursing majors will take chemistry, psychology, anatomy, and physiology courses and work in hospitals, nursing homes, doctor's offices, and government health departments in their time as nursing students.

What questions should I ask before I choose a school of nursing?

Choosing which nursing school to attend often includes contacting multiple schools and asking about their specific nursing program. Some good questions to ask are:

  • Is the program accredited? What is accreditation?
  • What is the NCLEX pass rate?
  • How much of the program is online versus hand on?
  • How many clinical hours do students experience?

Is it worth majoring in nursing?

While nursing can be a difficult major, it is a worthwhile career path. Not only can it be a fulfilling career of helping people, but senior-level nurses also are highly paid and have great job security.

Is nursing a stressful major and career?

While nursing is a fulfilling career, it can also be stressful. Studying to be a nurse has the pressure of a high workload and attempting to pass the NCLEX. Despite this, if you love nursing, it is worth it as a career choice.

What is the number one nursing school in the US?

In 2023 US News rated University of Pennsylvania's Penn Nursing as the number one nursing school in the US. More of the best nursing schools include Duke University, Emory University, and Johns Hopkins University.

Create a profile and use the scholarship search feature to access exclusive nursing scholarships.

The process is easy, and hundreds of scholarships are available to help aid students like yourself. There are scholarships on available for many different majors and need-based and merit-based scholarships, among many other categories. You can also read the blog for more articles like this one.

Adren Setian

About Adren

Adren has always loved writing both fiction and nonfiction, always with the intention to help other people. At, she loves being a specialist who works to help students reduce their student debt and make financially wise decisions about the future of their education. 

Past experience that informs Adren’s expertise includes working with the Education and Employment Team of Catholic Social Services Refugee Assistance and Immigration Services. Being a research assistant analyzing data for research projects at the University of Alaska Anchorage. Several years as the Assistant Manager of an Equine Education program where responsibilities included creating and developing curriculums. Time spent volunteering as the Vice President and Senior Graphic Designer for the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Psychology Club and Psi Chi Honor Society chapter with the goal of furthering students’ professional skills and knowledge of the field of Psychology and building a sense of community.

Adren would like to end her introduction with a land acknowledgement relevant to Anchorage, Alaska, her hometown and place of residence: “Dena'inaq ełnen'aq' gheshtnu ch'q'u yeshdu. (Dena'ina)” [I live and work on the land of the Dena’ina. (English)] — Translated by Joel Isaak and Sondra Stuart

Adren is no longer with the Writing Team, but we continue to value and appreciate her contributions.

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