Do you like to take care of people? Are you able to work long hours, sometimes while standing for long periods of time? If you answered yes to both questions, then you might be thinking about becoming a Registered Nurse (RN) in Georgia.
Nursing careers are currently in high demand as there is a shortage of them across the United States. The nursing field of work is currently experiencing a national growth rate of 12.3 percent.
Continue reading to learn more about the nursing profession and accelerated nursing programs in Georgia that can help give your career as a Registered Nurse a boost to your career.
Requirements to become an RN in Georgia
To become an RN in Georgia you must:
- Complete one year of nursing training at a school approved by the Georgia Board of Nursing.
- After you have completed an educational program, you can apply for a practical nursing license through the Board.
You must also take and pass the National Council for Practical Nurses Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN).
There is an application fee and an exam fee to be paid, so take note.
In Georgia, the NCLEX can be taken in Albany, Atlanta, Augusta, Macon, and Savannah. You must renew your license every two years by paying a renewal fee and showing proof of completion of 20 hours of continuing education.
You may apply for the license by endorsement if you are licensed to practice nursing in another state. Albeit, you will need to pay a fee and show proof of prior employment and license as an RN in the state in which you are licensed.
Job Outlook and Salary for RNs in Georgia
According to data provided by the Projections Managing Partnership (PMP), 26,370 LPNs were hired in Georgia in 2016. The number of LPNs working in this state is expected to increase by 11.3 percent by the year 2026, a rate slightly below the expected national average.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that LPNs in the state earned an hourly average of $19.54 in 2017. The annual average in the state for this profession was $40,650. Top earners stood at an annual average of $52,100.
Working as a Licensed Registered Nurse in Georgia
RNs typically work in places that provide long-term care for chronically ill patients, such as nursing homes and home health agencies. However, they can also work in private clinics and practices, hospitals, and even schools. You can stay at a practical nursing level or continue your training and pursue a license as a registered nurse.
With a steady growth rate in the state, there are employment opportunities for nurses throughout Georgia. However, the cities with the highest employment rates are Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Decatur, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, and Savannah. The highest-paying cities in the state are Athens, Atlanta, Roswell, and Sandy Springs.
The List of Accelerated Nursing Programs in Georgia
- Emory University Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing 1520 Clifton Road Atlanta, GA 30322 800-222-3879
Emory University‘s Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing for second-graders, and a Bachelor of Science for Master’s degrees. There are also accelerated programs for bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
The Emory University accelerated nursing program is designed to help you earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing within 2 years.
Through this program, you’ll be able to explore and develop your career path while earning credits that can be applied to your bachelor’s degree. You’ll also be able to take advantage of the many resources available at Emory University, including the Center for Nursing Education, which provides support for students during their clinical rotations.
The accelerated nursing program consists of four semesters of coursework and two semesters of clinical rotations. During your first year, you will complete general education courses such as English composition and psychology that will prepare you for nursing school and give you a solid foundation for an academic career.
During your second year, you will take courses that focus on nursing skills like pharmacology and obstetrics/gynecology. You will also attend clinical rotations where you’ll have the opportunity to apply what you’ve learned in the classroom in real-world settings.
You can apply directly from high school or after completing some college credits at another school; however, it is recommended that applicants have completed at least 60 semester hours of college coursework before applying to ensure they are prepared academically for a rigorous academic environment.
The cost of tuition to study in the program is $28,560 per semester.
Georgia State University
- Georgia State University Byrdine F. Lewis School of Nursing PO Box 4019 Atlanta, GA 30302 (404) 423-1200
Georgia State University offers a traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing and an accelerated program called Achieving Curriculum Expedited, or ACE, Bachelor of Science in Nursing for students who have completed the core curriculum and are able to attend full-time.
The university also offers a transfer track for students transferring from other nursing programs. Georgia State also offers a master’s of science in nursing, a post-master’s certificate in nursing, a registered nurse (RN) to earn a master’s degree, and a doctorate.
The Accelerated Nursing program at Georgia State University is the perfect option for people who want to pursue their nursing career, but don’t want to spend a lot of time in school.
The program is designed for people who already hold an associate’s degree in another field, and who want to get their bachelor’s degree in less than two years.
If you’re interested in this program, you’ll need to submit a general application and have your transcripts sent directly from your current institution. The next step is an interview with an academic advisor who will help you determine if you meet the requirements necessary to be accepted into the program.
The cost of tuition at GSU varies, but you should expect to pay within the range of $20,000 to $35,000 per year for its accelerated nursing program.
Kennesaw State University
- Kennesaw State University WellStar School of Nursing 1000 Chastain Road Kennesaw, GA 30144 770-499-3211
Kennesaw State University offers a traditional and accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Registered Nurse (RN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing Bridge program. The school also offers a Master of Science degree in primary nursing care, advanced care management, and leadership, with leadership in nursing education and health policy. Kennesaw also offers a doctorate in nursing.
The Accelerated Nursing Program at Kennesaw State University is a unique opportunity for those who want to become nurses. The program allows you to complete all of your required coursework in just three semesters.
The Accelerated Nursing Program at Kennesaw State University provides students with an opportunity to complete their undergraduate degree in nursing within three years.
This accelerated program will enable you to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing, providing you with the credentials necessary to enter the field of nursing, while also giving you the flexibility to complete your degree while working full-time.
The program costs $170/credit for in-district students; $270/credit for in-state students; $965/credit for international students.
- Brenau University School of Health and Science, Department of Nursing 500 Washington St. SE Gainesville, GA 30501 770-534-6251
Brenau University offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing as well as a bridging program for RNs who wish to pursue a BSN degree. Brenau University also offers a Master of Science in Nursing and an RN to MSN Bridge Program.
Brenau University’s accelerated nursing program is designed to enable students who have already completed their undergraduate degree to get into the nursing field in as little as 16 months. The program is designed for students who already have a bachelor’s degree in any field.
The accelerated nursing program at Brenau University includes a strong emphasis on clinical experience, which allows students to gain hands-on experience in real-world settings before they graduate. Students will also be able to take advantage of Brenau’s location in Georgia, which offers excellent opportunities for clinical study abroad programs in countries like Costa Rica and Tanzania.
Because this program is designed for students with prior degrees other than nursing, it is ideal for those who want to quickly start earning money as a nurse after graduation.
Cost of tuition: $811/credit hour.
Medical College of Georgia – Augusta University
- Georgia School of Nursing College of Medicine 1120 15th Street Augusta, GA 30912 706-721-3278
Medical College of Georgia offers Bachelor and Master of Science programs in Nursing and BSN to MSN and RN to MSN Bridge. The school also offers a doctorate of nursing practice and a Ph.D. in nursing.
The accelerated nursing program at MCG-AU provides students with a broad range of clinical opportunities that prepare them for their future careers as nurses. Students will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience working with patients, performing bedside procedures, and participating in large-scale events such as hospital-wide code blue simulations.
The program also offers many opportunities for students to participate in research projects alongside faculty members at MCG-AU. These research projects provide an additional benefit to graduating nurses by helping them develop critical thinking skills that will help them make better decisions when caring for patients.
The cost of tuition is $14,463 for in-state students and $28,925 for out-of-state students intending to enroll in the program.
West Georgia University
- University of West Georgia School of Nursing 1601 Maple St Carrollton, GA 30118 678-839-6552
The University of West Georgia offers two tracks; the traditional Bachelor of Nursing program, as well as the RN to BSN bridge program. The University also offers a part-time BSN program at Newnan and a Master of Science in Nursing at the main campus.
The accelerated nursing program at West Georgia University is designed to give you a strong foundation in the sciences, as well as the clinical skills needed to succeed in the healthcare field.
You’ll learn from experienced professors who will provide practical training and help prepare you for real-world situations with hands-on experience and clinical rotations.
Valdosta State University
- Valdosta State University College of Nursing 1500 North Patterson Street Valdosta, GA 31698 229-333-5959
Valdosta State University offers a traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing as well as an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing for second-grade students. The school also offers a master of science in nursing and RN to BSN and RN to MSN or bridge programs.
The accelerated nursing program at Valdosta University is a great option for students who want to enter the nursing field and get a head start on their careers.
The program includes both online and in-person components, allowing you to take classes that fit your schedule and lifestyle. You’ll be able to choose from a wide range of electives, including:
- Nutrition and Food Safety
- First Aid & CPR
By completing this program, you’ll have an edge over other applicants when you’re applying for jobs—and get started on your career sooner than expected.
- Mercer University Georgia Baptist College of Nursing 3001 Mercer University Drive Atlanta, GA 30341 -678-547-6000
Mercer University offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with a pre-licensure track and an accelerated RN to BSN track. The University also offers a Master of Science in Nursing with Clinical Nurse Specialists and Nurse Educator programs. Mercer University also offers a Ph.D. in nursing.
The Accelerated Nursing Program at Mercer University is designed to give you the training you need to begin your career as a registered nurse in just 12 months.
The program provides students with an intensive, hands-on experience that ensures they’ll be ready to apply their knowledge and skills to real-life situations. Furthermore, they’ll spend their first year learning how to care for patients in an acute care setting, and then move on to more specialized training in maternal child health, emergency room care, mental health nursing, or pediatric nursing.
The total cost of the accelerated nursing program at Mercer University is $59,685.
Georgia Southern University
- Georgia Southern University School of Nursing PO Box 8158 Statesboro, GA 30460 912-478-5391
Georgia Southern University offers a Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) program, a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Nursing, and a post-MSN certificate. Georgia Southern University also offers an RN to BSN and BSN to MSN bridge program. The school additionally offers a doctorate in nursing practice.
Georgian Southern University offers accelerated nursing programs in a variety of formats, including traditional on-campus and online. The accelerated nursing program is designed for students who are currently working in the field, who are seeking to enter the industry, or who have already entered the industry and want to advance their careers.
The program is designed to help nurses gain the skills and knowledge they need to excel in their careers while also allowing them to earn an advanced degree that will give them the competitive edge they need.
The cost of tuition to study in an accelerated nursing program at GSU may be as high as $57,000. However, international students intending to study in these programs may be required to pay double, or close – which is quite expensive without aid.
Clayton State University
- Clayton State University School of Nursing 2000 Clayton State Boulevard Morrow, GA 30260 678-466-4900
Clayton State University offers a traditional bachelor’s degree in nursing and an accelerated RN to BSN tracker nursing program. Clayton State also offers a Master of Science in Nursing and an RN to MSN Tracking Program.
Clayton State University’s accelerated nursing program is a great way to get your degree in just a few years.
The program combines classroom and clinical experience, so you’ll graduate with real-world skills that prepare you for the job market. You’ll learn both the technical and interpersonal skills needed to excel in the medical field, and you’ll also have an opportunity to network with other students, professionals, and employers through their career services department.
FAQs About Accelerated Nursing Programs in Georgia
What is an accelerated nursing program?
A: Accelerated nursing programs offer a condensed version of the traditional nursing program, allowing students to get their degree in less time than if they were to complete a traditional program.
Accelerated nursing programs typically take 12 months or more to complete.
Who should apply to an accelerated nursing program?
A: Anyone who wants to move through their nursing education as quickly as possible while still getting the same quality education they would receive in a traditional program.
How do I know which accelerated nursing program is right for me?
A: There are many factors that go into choosing an accelerated nursing program, including how much money you want to spend on tuition and whether or not you’re interested in pursuing further education after earning your degree.
How do I apply to an accelerated nursing program?
A: The application process varies by school and whether or not you already hold an undergraduate degree.
Most accelerated nursing programs require that applicants submit transcripts from all previous colleges attended, letters of recommendation from professors or employers, proof of immunizations, and more.
Why should I choose an accelerated nursing program?
There are many reasons to consider an accelerated nursing program. The most obvious is that it will save you time and money.
The average cost of accelerated nursing programs in Georgia is about $30,000 per year, and the average time to complete it is two years—but if you get an accelerated BSN, you can finish in just one year. That’s like saving $15,000 and nearly two years.
But there are other advantages to accelerated nursing programs in Georgia too:
- Accelerated programs are designed for busy people who want to return to the workforce as soon as possible.
- You’ll learn more in less time, which means you’ll have more opportunities in your career.
- You’ll have a head start on colleagues who took regular programs (and maybe get hired before them).
- You’ll be able to take advantage of financial aid options that only apply to full-time students.
Wrapping It Up
Preparation is key when seeking nursing licensure so that you ensure that you have the best chances of becoming a nurse.
For many, an accelerated nursing program is a right path to take as it will streamline your coursework and allow you to hit the ground running with your career due to the hands-on experience you will gain.
You can do more research to discover more accelerated nursing programs in Georgia that suit you. Good luck.