Nursing Schools in Palm Beach County, FL with Program Overviews

Sep 20, 2018

Essential Information

Students in Palm Beach County, Florida, may choose from nursing programs leading to associate's, bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees. While some programs are designed for individuals new to the field, others are structured to serve the educational needs of currently licensed nurses seeking to advance their careers.

To enter a nursing education program, it's common that applicants undergo a criminal background check, submit health and immunization records and get tuberculosis inoculations. In addition to classroom instruction and lab training, clinical fieldwork is often included in order to allow students to gain experience.

Statewide, there are more than 100 schools that offer degree programs in nursing. Read on to learn about four of the largest schools in Palm Beach County and their program offerings.

School Comparison: At a Glance

School Name School Type & Setting Nursing Degree Programs Offered Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2017-2018)
Academy for Nursing and Health Occupations 2-year, private not-for profit; large suburb Associate Degree in Nursing,
Associate Degree in Practical Nursing,
Occupational Associate Degree in Practical Nursing with critical thinking and IV certification
Practical Nursing: $22,700*
Florida Atlantic University 4-year, public; small city Bachelor of Science in Nursing,
Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing,
Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing,
Master of Science in Nursing,
Doctor of Nursing Practice
$4,831 (in state)*
$17,276 (out-of-state)*
Palm Beach Atlantic University 4-year, private not-for-profit; midsize city Bachelor of Science in Nursing,
Registered Nurse to Bachelor of Science in Nursing,
Master of Science in Nursing in Health Systems Leadership,
Bachelor of Science in Nursing to Doctor of Nursing Practice,
Doctor of Nursing Practice
Palm Beach State College 4-year, primarily associate's, public; large suburb Associate of Science in Nursing,
Bachelor of Science in Nursing
$2,444 (in state)*
$8,732 (out-of-state)*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

Academy for Nursing and Health Occupations

Aspiring nurses in West Palm Beach have multiple options to earn an associate's degree in nursing at the Academy for Nursing and Health Occupations. In the Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) program, students take classes during the day or in the evenings and complete 72 credit hours in courses like the role of the registered nurse, pharmacology and medication administration, as well as nursing specialties like medical/surgical nursing. Clinical or simulation hours are required for students to gain experience and learn how to respond in emergencies.

A second option is the Associate of Science in Practical Nursing, which is also offered in daytime or evening and weekend course formats. This program has a mixture of clinical, classroom theory and laboratory practice focusing on topics like ethics and legal issues in nursing, nursing care skills and mental health concepts. Students may also pursue an additional critical thinking and intravenous (IV) certification.

Florida Atlantic University

Boca Raton-based Florida Atlantic University offers nursing-related degrees at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels. There are three Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree programs: traditional, accelerated, and RN-to-BSN. In the traditional BSN program, students learn about the fundamentals of nursing and pathophysiology, as well as how to care for individuals in various health situations and life stages. Clinical programs begin in a student's second semester and they continue through their senior year, providing experience in a variety of situations.

The accelerated BSN program begins in a summer semester, and required courses include introduction to nursing, decision-making, professional nursing practice, and nursing research. Some courses in the accelerated BSN are offered online. The RN-to-BSN bridge program includes courses in health assessment, nursing leadership, nursing scholarship, and a practicum in nursing leadership. The university also offers a Master of Science in Nursing, post-master's certificates, a Doctor of Nursing Practice, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing.

Palm Beach Atlantic University

In West Palm Beach, Palm Beach Atlantic University offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing through its School of Nursing. Clinical courses begin during the first semester of the junior year. Qualified freshmen may be accepted for guaranteed acceptance. Those accepted to the program began taking nursing classes their freshman year. Students will take courses in health assessments, clinical surgical nursing, and nursing leadership. The curriculum prepares students to take the NCLEX examination, which is required to practice and to receive state licensure.

Additional options for undergraduates include an online degree completion program for RNs seeking a BSN. Prospective graduate students can select from among a health systems leadership Master of Science in Nursing and a BSN-to-Doctor of Nursing Practice. A post-master's DNP is also available to experienced nurse practitioners.

Palm Beach State College

At Lake Worth's Palm Beach State College, students seeking an associate's degree in nursing must complete prerequisites in anatomy and physiology, human growth and development, and chemistry. The core classes include skills labs, clinical sessions, and courses in pharmacology and professional nursing. Graduates are eligible to sit for the NCLEX, which is required to become an RN. Students interested in continuing their education can enroll in the school's degree completion program and earn a BSN.

Career Requirements

According to the Florida Board of Nursing, a prospective registered nurse (RN) or practical nurse (PN) can be licensed via examination or endorsement. To qualify for licensure by examination, a nursing student must graduate from an accredited nursing program and pass the National Council Licensure Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), or the National Council Licensure Exam for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). Registered or practical nurses from another jurisdiction may qualify through endorsement.

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