Top 9 Accelerated Nursing Programs in Wisconsin

This post discusses top accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin for non-nursing degree holders who want to switch careers in any of the state’s renowned institutions. 

Nursing is one of the most sought-after professions out there. There are lots of job opportunities open to nurses as the demand keeps going up. With so many types of nursing degrees available, it is paramount to understand how each one works and know which is more suitable for you.

Also, understand that the more valuable your nursing degree is, the higher you can earn. This is why nurses and others who have bachelor’s degrees in other disciplines, are looking for ways to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)  degree, so they can enter deep into the core nursing roles.

Accelerated nursing programs are programs designed for this purpose. They are one of the quickest routes one can take in obtaining a nursing degree as a non-nursing degree holder. They allow you to transfer credits from your current degree toward a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree.

What this means is that instead of doing a four-year program where you will spend most of your time taking non-nursing courses, you go right into your nursing coursework. These programs are usually very intensive and demanding and require full commitment with no breaks until their completion which is usually between 12 to 18 months. There are also Accelerated Direct Entry MSN programs designed for non-nursing degree holders. These programs cover both BSN and MSN in approximately 2 years.

Not everyone is eligible to enroll in these programs as there are prerequisites that must be met before applying. These prerequisites vary among institutions. However, it is necessary that you have this in mind.

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ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAMS IN WISCONSIN

Wisconsin is a state in the midwestern United States known for beer and cheese production. They have been known as “America’s Dairyland”, being one of the nation’s leading dairy producers. Wisconsin has also gained recognition as one of the states that provide the best education across the United States.

They are greatly invested in providing access to affordable education which will, in turn, empower their citizens to develop solutions to global issues, create and sustain new businesses within the state, as well as bring their expertise in areas that will benefit the state.

Wisconsin is home to some of the top nursing programs in the nation. State residents also get to enjoy low tuition rates.

There are numerous institutions offering accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin. In Choosing the right one for you, you need to put some things into consideration, such as program requirements and eligibility; total program cost; location and cost of living on or off-campus; type of program (online or traditional); program accreditation; etc. These will help you determine the program that meets your needs.

TOP 9 ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAMS IN WISCONSIN

The following are our top 9 schools that offer accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin. More details will be provided on each of the schools to guide you on your selection and application process.

  • University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire Accelerated Nursing Program
  • University of Wisconsin, Madison Accelerated Nursing Program
  • Edgewood College Accelerated Nursing Program
  • University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee Accelerated Nursing Program
  • Bellin College Accelerated Nursing Program
  • University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh Accelerated Nursing Program
  • Marquette University Accelerated Nursing Program
  • Carroll University Accelerated Nursing Program
  • Concordia University Accelerated Nursing Program

1. UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN, EAU CLAIRE ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

The first school on our top 9 list of accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin is the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire. University of Wisconsin Eau Claire is a public university in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, which was established in 1916 as the Eau Claire State Normal School.

UW Eau Claire has four colleges: the College of Business, the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education and Human Sciences, and the College of Nursing.

Choosing to pursue nursing at UW-Eau Claire puts you in a program that has a long-standing reputation of excellence. The institution offers a great learning experience to its students through clinical practices, lab simulations, and cultural immersion experiences. They also learn in high-tech classrooms and state-of-the-art Clinical Simulation Labs.

The nursing programs offered in UW-Eau Claire are Traditional BSN, Accelerated BSN, RN to BSN, MSN, RN to MSN, DNP, and ADN. These degrees are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

BSN COMPLETION PROGRAM AT UW-EAU CLAIRE

UW Eau Claire’s BSN completion program is designed for registered nurses who are currently employed or those who are looking to build on their Associate of Nursing, to earn their Bachelor of Science in Nursing. It offers a hybrid of both online and face-to-face coursework, giving students the flexibility required to keep working while schooling.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS

To be considered for admission into UW-Eau Claire, an applicant must have:

  • Graduated with at least a 2.50 GPA from a nationally accredited Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) program (e.g. NLN, NLNAC, ACEN)
  • Attending final semester ADN Program OR Current WI license
  • Admitted to the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire in good standing
  • Completed 30+ transfer credits (non-nursing) with at least a 2.5 overall GPA
  • Completed required science courses with at least a 2.5 GPA
  • Complete e-form application

Both the UW-Eau Claire application and the BSN Completion Program application must be completed prior to being considered for admission to the BSN Completion Program. For more application details, visit the school site below.

Visit school site

2. UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN, MADISON ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

The University of Wisconsin Madison was the first public university to be established in Wisconsin. Founded in the year 1848, UW Madison continues to be the oldest and largest public university in the state. The UW Madison School of Nursing was founded in 1924 as the first collegiate nursing program in Wisconsin, serving nurses worldwide throughout their careers.

Amongst the universities offering accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin, UW-Madison has the most wholesome requirements. Applicants have to show certain attributes which would be evaluated by the admission committee.

This accelerated BSN program is an in-person program that runs intensively for 12 months with no traditional semester breaks. This prepares students to sit for licensing exams on completion of the program. You are eligible to apply if you already hold a non-nursing degree.

Each Semester, Accelerated BSN students will work under the supervision of clinical experts to provide hands-on care to people and take part in interactive simulation using state-of-the-art technology. By the end of the program, nurses must have been trained to enter deep into the profession.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENT

Applicants are required to submit an online application, participate in a group interview, and submit an in-person writing exercise. These are reviewed by two faculty members. The following factors/attributes are considered:

  • Academic Preparation and Performance (including cumulative and prerequisite course GPAs, the rigor of course work, grade trends, etc.)
  • Leadership
  • Extracurricular Activities and Service
  • Health Care Experience and Professional Goals
  • Diversity in Experience and Background
  • Quality of Application Statements/Essays, Interview, and Writing Exercise.

TUITION RATE

$45,000 for Wisconsin residents and $60,000 for non-residents.

3. EDGEWOOD COLLEGE ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

The next among the schools that offer accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin are Edgewood college, a private Dominican college in Madison, Wisconsin.

Edgewood College offers its students exceptional learning experiences in top-notch theoretical and experimental learning environments. The institution is affiliated with reputable regional hospitals where its students are trained exquisitely to become nurses who can thrive in all health care settings.

Their Post-Baccalaureate Accelerated Nursing Program is a 12 months intensive hands-on program that will equip students to be capable and self-sufficient nurses. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
The new cohort begins every August and January, and Edgewood College will accept 21 candidates each for the completion of the program. Students who graduate with a 3.0 or higher will be automatically accepted into their graduate program.
Eligibility is determined by holistic evaluation of applicants’ transcripts, personal statements, and resume/CV. Afterward, successful candidates are invited to interview on-campus with nursing faculty members.
Eligibility and Requirements
  • Completed a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.75 or higher and a minimum of 2.75 in all required math and science courses.
  • Resume/CV
  • Personal Statement one to two pages in length describing your motivation to pursue nursing
  • Transcripts  from previous institutions
  • Completion of course prerequisites and certifications prior to the program start date.
Course Prerequisites
College-level Statistics, General/Introductory Psychology, Life Span Psychology, Foreign Language (two semesters in college or two years of high school with a C average), 4 credits of college-level, lab-based Chemistry, Anatomy, and Physiology I, Anatomy and Physiology II, Microbiology with Laboratory.
All Math and Science courses must have been completed within the last five years or have been taken while earning a degree that was conferred within the last five years.
Cost
For the 2021-2022 school year, tuition for the accelerated nursing program in Edgewood College was charged as a complete program package cost of $63,400.

4. UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN, MILWAUKEE ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

The University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee or UW-Milwaukee is a public institution in Milwaukee, Wisconsin that was founded in 1956. It is the largest university in the Milwaukee metropolitan area and the second-largest university in Wisconsin.

The accelerated nursing program in UW-Milwaukee is a direct entry Master of Nursing (MN) program designed for students who hold a non-nursing bachelor’s degree and wish to pursue an advanced degree in nursing.

This program option admits students as a cohort, and after 16 months, students are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN examination, this allows them to work as registered nurses while completing the remaining MN credits.

If you are interested in obtaining a master’s degree and becoming a clinical nurse leader, then this program is for you. After graduation, you become eligible to take the Clinical Nurse Leaders (CNL) Certification examination.

Eligibility and Requirements

To begin your application, you must first apply to the Graduate School and include:

  • A nonrefundable application fee
  • Unofficial transcripts from all schools attended
  • Current resume
  • Three references from people who are knowledgeable about your academic experience and potential for graduate study in nursing
  • Graduate Record Exam results are required for applicants with an undergraduate degree below a 3.2 on a 4.0 scale, as calculated by the Graduate School. Exceptions will be made for applicants with a master’s degree who obtained a 3.2 or higher GPA as calculated by the Graduate School.
  • A bachelor’s degree from an accredited program with a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (4.0 scale) with approved prerequisite coursework.
  • International applicants must provide scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS), with some exceptions.
  • Three-to-five page, a double-spaced personal statement.

Cost/Tuition Fees

In-state tuition and fees are estimated to be $27,045
Out-of-state tuition and fees are estimated to be $40,476

Visit school site

5. BELLIN COLLEGE, GREEN BAY ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

Bellin College is a private nursing school and graduate school of sciences located in Bellevue, Wisconsin, a suburb of Green Bay, Wisconsin.
At Bellin College, students have the opportunity to learn on campus with state-of-the-art technology, including an expanded Health Sciences Resource Center with multiple simulation labs.
As a specialized school, Bellin College has very few programs and has equally made it to the top 10 schools offering accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin.
Its accelerated nursing program is a 15 Month Program designed for students who have completed the required 56 general education credits. The program is quite intensive and consists of seven consecutive 8-week sessions.
Each year, Bellin College admits two cohorts into this program. The first cohort starts in January till May of the next year, while the second cohort starts in June until October of the next year.
Eligibility and Requirements 
  • 3.0 GPA
  • Required general education credits
  • No grades lower than a “C” in required general education courses.
  • Personal Resume 
  • Written Personal Statement
  • Official transcripts
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions
  • Official College Board AP transcripts/scores (if applicable)
Cost
The average tuition fee for Bellin College is $21,685
Financial aids are also available.

6. UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN, OSHKOSH

The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh (UW Oshkosh) is a public university in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. It was founded in 1871, and it is the third-largest higher learning institute in Wisconsin.
The UW Oshkosh College of Nursing offers a 12-month hybrid accelerated BSN program for individuals who already have a bachelor’s degree in other disciplines. This undergraduate nursing program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
Each year, the College offers three cohorts for this program with start dates in February, May, and October.
UW Oshkosh College of Nursing has demonstrated an all-around quality nursing education. The program components consist of theory courses offered 100% online; clinical rotations completed in or near a student’s home community, and three on-campus residencies: orientation weekend, a two-week lab/clinical combination, and advanced concepts/capstone week.
Eligibility and Requirements 
  • Prior completion of non-nursing bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university with a minimum GPA of 2.5.
  • Minimum pre-nursing GPA of 3.0 on the completed College of Nursing prerequisites
  • All of the required pre-requisite courses must be completed with a minimum “C” grade
  • Students educated outside of the United States must submit evidence of English language proficiency by taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and achieving a minimum score of 71.
Cost
Starting with October 2022 Cohort tuition is $46,500. Tuition is the same for in-state and out-of-state students. There are financial aids available as well.

7. MARQUETTE UNIVERSITY, MILWAUKEE ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

Marquette University is a Catholic Jesuit university located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Founded in 1881, Marquette is among the top schools that offer accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin. Their accelerated program is a fast-track MSN program for non-Nursing degree holders looking for a career move into nursing. This program puts you right into the field one degree ahead in less than two years.

This is a five-semester-long program consisting of nursing theory coursework, hands-on nursing labs, and in-person clinical rotations. It also prepares students for the National Council Licensure Exam such that they graduate extra ready to sit for it. This will set them on track for an exciting career journey and multiple opportunities in the field.

Marquette’s Direct Entry MSN Program has enrollment locations in Milwaukee and Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin with nursing theory courses completed on-campus and online respectively.

Eligibility & Requirements

  • Hold a non-nursing bachelor’s degree with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0\
  • Complete all required prerequisite courses with a grade of “C” or higher
  • Live within driving distance to either of the campuses.

Cost

Undergraduate tuition is $45,860

Visit school site

8. CAROLL UNIVERSITY, WAUKESHA ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

Caroll University is a private liberal arts college located in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Established in 1846, Caroll University is the first four-year higher institution in Wisconsin. Its Direct Entry MSN program is designed to equip students with the skills and experiences they need to hit the ground running in the high-demand field of nursing.

This program is 20 months long and is open to graduates of other disciplines who are interested in becoming registered nurses, provided they meet the institution’s requirements. However, checking off the eligibility box doesn’t guarantee that applicants will be offered admission as this program is highly competitive.

The program’s 8-week hybrid courses mix online learning with labs and clinical, designed around a consistent schedule to make student’s life easier.

Eligibility & Requirements

  • Undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • A non-nursing bachelor’s degree from an accredited university
  • A Grade of C or higher in all prerequisite courses within 7 years.
  • Graduate Studies Application
  • All official post-secondary transcripts, including both graduate and undergraduate coursework
  • Two letters of reference
  • Statement of purpose
  • Current resume
  • MSN Technical and Progression Standards
Cost
Tuition for this program is $864 per semester for five semesters.

9. CONCORDIA UNIVERSITY, MEQUON ACCELERATED NURSING PROGRAM

Concordia University Wisconsin (CUW) is a private Lutheran university located in Mequon, Wisconsin. The institution was founded in 1881 under the operation of Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod (LCMS).
Concordia’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program is a 14-month second-degree BSN program for non-nurses to fast-track their transition into nursing. This is a hybrid program of online coursework and in-person clinical and simulation experiences. Students are however required to live in the Southeastern Wisconsin area.
Concordia University is built on a Christian foundation, which means you will be set apart as the nurse who cares for their patients and coworkers in mind, body, and spirit. You will be engaged in intensive training, and a highly qualified faculty will be available to provide you with all the support you will need.
Please note that RN to BSN is a different program for registered nurses who are seeking a bachelor’s degree in nursing. If this is you, please scroll to the end of this section to visit the school website and see how you can apply.
Eligibility & Requirements
  • All students applying for admission to the program must have:
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher from an accredited university
  • Overall GPA of 2.75 or higher
  • B or higher in the following course: Anatomy and Physiology I; Anatomy and Physiology II; Chemistry; Microbiology, and C or higher in College Algebra.
  • Current CV or resume that includes educational and professional experience
  • Official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • A personal essay
Cost
Tuition for this program is $47,625 at $16,270 per semester.

Conclusion

At this point, you’ve probably done a self-assessment to see which of the programs you are most qualified for. Please know that 100% eligibility will not guarantee your acceptance. Accelerated nursing programs in Wisconsin are highly competitive, and some institutions admit on a first come first serve basis.
Therefore, if you are looking to apply to any of the schools listed on this post, it is recommended that you go through each school’s website to confirm admission openings and deadlines and start applying accordingly.

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