2-Year ADN Nursing
Programs in New York
City: Online & Campus

Learn about state-approved associate degree nursing programs that can help you become a licensed RN in NYC quickly and affordably.

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Written By

Kathleen Curtis

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Kathleen Curtis is an American writer currently living in Louisville, Kentucky. She has developed content around education for more than a decade for both domestic and international clients.

last updated

03/22/2022

As COVID-19 has shown, New York City nurses are fierce healthcare heroes who go to extra lengths to care for their patients. Even though the pandemic may be winding down, the need for qualified registered nurses remains significant. The latest data anticipates a nearly 25 percent growth in NYC for new RN jobs through 2028, making it a great time to enter the field.

Completing one of the many ADN nursing programs in New York City provides the education and credentials needed to step into an in-demand nursing position in only two years. Keep reading to learn about top ADN programs in NYC, the advantages ADN programs have over other degree options, and more.

College Spotlights: Best ADN Programs in New York City

To help you on your nursing school search, we’ve identified some of the top state-approved, accredited ADN nursing programs in New York City. The three schools spotlighted below set the standard for ADN programs in New York City by scoring top marks in areas like curriculum quality, affordability, and study flexibility. See if one has what you’re looking for or simply use them as a benchmark when looking at other options.

New York City College of Technology 

Located in Brooklyn, City Tech provides an associate degree in nursing that prepares graduates to take the NCLEX-RN exam and become RNs. The program consists of 66-67 credits and typically requires two full years of study before graduating. Required coursework includes medication calculations in nursing, caring for clients with complex alterations in survival and functional needs, foundations of caring, and caring for clients with chronic alterations in human needs.

Applicants must submit a passing score on the Kaplan Integrated Testing Program and provide TEAS exam scores. While enrolled at City Tech, students must participate in at least six hours of community service each semester.

LaGuardia Community College

LaGuardia Community Colleges offers an associate in applied science in nursing that meets the requirements for NCLEX-RN and New York nursing license eligibility. In addition to 23 credits of core classes, students admitted to the clinical phase complete an additional 43 credits. Required core courses include medical surgical nursing, concepts in pharmacology and nutrition, psychiatric mental health nursing, and parent-child health nursing. These courses are offered on campus in daytime sessions with each lasting 12 weeks.

Applicants must provide TEAS scores of 58.7% or higher to be considered for admission. As of 2020, the program achieved a 100% NCLEX-RN exam pass rate. In addition, 88% of graduates found employment and/or engaged in continuing education.

Borough of Manhattan Community College

Students seeking learning flexibility may find that Borough of Manhattan Community College best meets their needs. Prospective RNs can choose from full-time and part-time ADN programs as well as those offered on evenings and/or weekends. The program also has articulation agreements with schools in both NYC and NYS for students looking to continue into a four-year nursing program.

MBCC’s ADN program includes coursework in fundamentals of patient care, obstetrical and psychiatric nursing care, pediatric and basic medical-surgical nursing care, and professional issues in contemporary nursing. In addition to externship opportunities, the department also provides a tutoring lab, a nursing skills laboratory, and extensive library resources. Interested students must take the Kaplan Admission Test at BMCC to be considered.

Advantages of ADN Programs in New York City

ADN programs in NYC offer several advantages to nursing students, especially for those deciding between different options like CNA, LPN, or four-year BSN programs. We look at four key advantages below to choosing an ADN program in New York City.

  1. Faster and cheaper than 4-year BSN programs.

Most ADN programs in NYC require two years of full-time study and allow graduates to seek RN licensure. BSN programs, however, take twice as long and result in the same job opportunities. Because community colleges routinely offer ADN programs, tuition also tends to be far less. For instance, per-credit tuition for NYC residents at LaGuardia Community College is currently $210 per credit, while students at New York University can expect to pay $1,583 per credit.

  1. Higher starting pay and salary ceiling vs. other entry-level healthcare roles.

As the table below demonstrates, registered nurses earn substantially more than other entry-level positions in healthcare settings. While medical assistant and licensed practical nurse training programs typically take a year or less, staying in school for just 12 months longer can more than double your yearly earnings. Registered nurses can also take on more advanced responsibilities, which also adds to salary potential.

Entry-Level Annual Pay Experienced Annual Pay
Registered Nurses $82,420 $113,730
Licensed Practical Nurses $49,700 $63,030
Medical Assistants $35,570 $46,050

New York State Department of Labor; 2021

  1. Strong demand for registered nurses in New York City.

According to the New York State Department of Labor, jobs for registered nurses in NYC are projected to grow by an impressive 24 percent through 2028, leading to nearly 20,000 new positions. In addition, just over 6,600 existing jobs will open each year due to current NYC-based registered nurses changing positions or retiring. Those seeking job stability can feel assured that nursing roles will continue to flourish and expand.

New Jobs Job Growth Rate Avg. Annual Openings
19,100 24.3% 6,610

Source: New York State Department of Labor; 2018-2028

  1. Opportunity to move into more advanced nursing careers in the future.

After working in the field for several years, some RNs decide to update their credentials. Several schools throughout NYC offer nursing education programs designed to help RNs advance their careers, take on more leadership roles, and earn more money. Examples include the RN-to-BS program at Hunter College CUNY and the online RN-to-MS in nursing education at CUNY School of Professional Studies for RNs interested in becoming APRNs.

Inside Look at Online ADN Programs in New York City

Students seeking flexibility may be interested in attending an online ADN program in NYC. While no school currently offers a fully-online associate degree in nursing, several have hybrid programs that allow for taking foundational coursework and theory classes via distance learning.

At Excelsior College, for example, students can enroll in eight-week, fully-online courses. Another option is the ADN program at Swedish Institute’s College of Health Sciences that not only has online classes but also provides every student receives with an iPad to make virtual learning even easier.

When looking at prospective ADN programs in New York City, be aware that clinical components must be completed in person at an approved practicum site. Advisors help find options near a student’s residence.

FAQs About ADN Programs in New York City

What nursing knowledge and skills do you learn in ADN programs in New York City?

Completing one of the many ADN nursing programs in New York City provides a foundational understanding of nursing principles and practices for nursing licensure and work as a registered nurse. ADN programs, like the one at Saint Paul’s School of Nursing, typically cover topics such as foundations of nursing concepts, professional trends in nursing, microbiology for health-related sciences, and obstetric and neonatal nursing.

Another example, Manhattan Area Technical College, features classes for increasing skills and knowledge in areas like management of patient care, nursing across the lifespan, and bloodborne pathogens. Students also participate in clinical rotations to build real-life experience before graduating.

How much do ADN programs cost in New York City?

The cost of ADN programs in New York City varies based on several factors. Programs like those at public colleges with in-state or in-city tuition at public colleges typically cost the least, while out-of-state and private institutions can cost significantly more. In addition to tuition costs, you must also factor in associated fees, textbooks and supplies, exam costs, nursing uniforms, and other related expenses. The tuition rates for three of the top ADN programs in New York City below give you an idea of what you can expect to pay.

New York City College of Technology

AAS in Nursing

Total Credits: 66-67

$305/credit (resident); $620/credit (non-resident)

LaGuardia Community College

AAS in Nursing

Total Credits: 66

$210/credit (NYC resident); $320/credit (non-resident)

Manhattan Area Technical College

AAS in Nursing

Total Credits: 52

$157/credit

Can I get financial aid to help pay for my ADN program in New York City?

After finding a program with affordable tuition, you can start searching for scholarships, grants, and other programs to help lower costs. NYS offers a variety of scholarships open to learners attending a community college, including those within the CUNY system. The state’s Higher Education Services Corporation also provides a NYC loan forgiveness incentive program. Students should also make sure they understand how financial aid works and be sure to access the full array of ADN scholarships available to those enrolled in a NYC educational program.

How long do ADN programs in New York City take to finish?

Most ADN nursing programs in New York City require about two years of full-time study or three years of part-time study for first-time students. Students with LPN or CNA training can typically meet ADN degree requirements in 18-24 months. Students in an accelerated option may be able to graduate in as few as 12 months. At the New York City College of Technology, for example, students complete a semester-long introduction sequence before launching into the ADN program. They’ll complete five semesters, including one taken during the summer, after their first year.