Being one of the smallest states in the Union, Vermont is not typically at the top of the list of states with the most schools for a given path in higher education. That said, there are several nursing schools in Vermont and related licensing requirements for anyone who wants to go into nursing, just like any other state. Because there are fewer nursing schools in Vermont, folks who definitely want to study there find it easier to compare the learning paths and student offerings of each school.
Vermont follows the general pattern of providing a robust platform of basic training through technical schools and junior colleges to make it easy to find entry points into the nursing field. For those who show aptitude to go further than basic practical nursing, the state then formalizes advanced patterns through four-year universities as well as various graduate school programs offering specialization in everything from administration & management to radiology.
All of the approved nursing schools in the state expect basic experience, competency, and clinical time to be completed in addition to theory and textbook training. This hands-on criterion is considered essential for the nursing field as well as a good opportunity for networking and career contact building. Though Vermont doesn’t house a robust number of individual schools offering nursing programs, those that do offer nursing education often have several different courses available.
The bachelor’s degree program at the University of Vermont keeps its nursing coursework fairly standard, but the graduate level nursing programs are chock full of variety. The school prides itself on being responsive to the demand for nurses as it grows exponentially throughout the country and responsive to the need for more advanced nursing training.
The University of Vermont has a strong reputation and skill-building reference. On average, UofV nursing graduates are earning almost 3 percent more than their counterparts trained at other schools in the state. Since the University is located in a major city, students have the chance to deal with real big-city medical issues that can be found throughout the nation.
In terms of acceptance, prospective students are urged to put some study effort into their standardized testing prior to applying. This is because the students accepted into the University of Vermont’s nursing program typically score at least a 28 on the ACT or around 1200 on the SAT.
Castleton’s nursing program has a long history of training, research and academic performance among nursing schools in Vermont and nationwide. The school is a public university institution, but the demand for the school’s prestigious name tends to maintain a higher cost. Nursing students can expect direct exposure to simulated practical nursing environments via the school’s Simulation Center, interdisciplinary team training, and traditional theory/textbook learning. Most students take the traditional four-year bachelor’s degree track. However, Castleton offers an expedited three-year track, as well as a two-year RN-to-BSN track for those who have already completed their practical nursing track and are currently working. This last path gives transfer capability and credit for the nursing license that’s already been achieved. Finally, Castleton also provides a two-year track for entry-level students seeking to get into nursing fast, but it’ll offer stronger training than that provided at a junior college or trade school.
When it comes to earning power, Norwich University has a strong reputation for its graduates realizing a higher income level than their peers that graduated from different nursing schools in Vermont. Based on relatively recent reviews, Norwich graduates earn approximately 10 percent more than their peers. In addition, just about every first-year nursing student at Norwich received a scholarship assistance, averaging as much as $22,250. More interesting is the fact that graduates of the nursing program and the school overall have a very high degree of career success and ability to pay off related student loans from their studies.
Norwich as a learning institution fits the classic mold of a small town college choice. Northfield, Vermont sits away from the urban centers and allows students to focus far more on their studies due to its geographic isolation.
Understood as a career ladder pathway for those wanting to start into nursing and advance in the field at their own pace, Vermont Technical College provides a well-accepted 1 + 1 + 2 stacked credential pathway to the BSN degree. The progressive curriculum which includes a first-year practical nursing certificate, second-year associate’s degree in nursing, and the third and fourth years leading to an online bachelor’s degree in nursing, gives students the flexibility to enter and exit at any level, plus earn nursing credentials along the path and start working in the field sooner than with a traditional four-year BSN program. The school system also has a re-entry program option for nurses who had a prior license that lapsed and would like to reinstate their license in a low-cost way as they strive to again meet Vermont requirements.
The practical nursing program and associate degree program are offered at eleven locations (Bennington, Brattleboro, Lyndon, Middlebury, Morrisville, Newport, Randolph Center, Rutland, St. Albans, White River Junction and Williston) using both face to face and videoconferencing technology to deliver the programs. Most notably, Vermont Technical College retains a 100 percent placement rate for its graduates versus the national average of 86 percent in other schools.
While there are a number of online schools, colleges and universities that provide nursing training and can be accessed by the Internet, only three online nursing schools in Vermont are certified by the state’s nursing board to provide nursing training and education. Those three schools are also accredited as in-person schools as well and have been discussed above, including:
Studying for a nursing degree in Vermont is just as challenging as any other state. The test exams and licensing meet national standards and include larger hurdles students have to successfully pass. However, Vermont continues to support and provide lots of entry points for prospective nursing students as they respond to the high demand expected for new nurses and related healthcare candidates over the next decade.
The above schools have been rated first on their program scale and scope, depth of training and quality, and then by cost. Because Vermont doesn’t have a large population of nursing schools, the list is short and easy to rank simply by program scope. But nobody should assume any of the schools listed train less than the other in terms of expected nursing standards. All of the institutions above provide solid education paths, some even better than the same training found in other states nationwide.
If you want more information about a specific Vermont nursing school or have questions about one of the schools listed, contact us.