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Nursing Schools in Orlando, Florida: Accredited Online & Campus Programs

Find out how to launch or advance your nursing career by earning a quality, fully accredited degree or certificate from one of the best nursing schools in Orlando, Florida.

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Panoramic view of a city skyline at night with illuminated high-rise buildings and palm trees in the foreground, reflecting on a calm water body near a renowned DNP program campus.

The Orlando metro area — and Florida as a whole — is facing a soaring demand for quality nursing professionals, making it a great place for you to start or advance your nursing career. Orlando is also home to several major healthcare employers, including Orlando Regional Medical Center, which employs 36,000 staff, and Advent Health. Top schools maintain close partnerships with these institutions and others to connect students to top clinical training opportunities where they can observe and learn to provide cutting-edge care up close.

Ready to learn more?

We’ve surveyed dozens of nursing programs in the Orlando area to help you find the one that best fits your academic needs and professional goals. We’ve highlighted three standout programs in Orlando that offer online and campus programs for nurses for you to explore. Keep reading to learn more about these programs, the jobs — and salaries — they prepare you for, and more.

School Spotlights: Top Nursing Schools in Orlando, Florida

Most nursing schools in Orlando now have online components, the extent of which ranges from a few classes featuring online didactic coursework to virtual simulation practice labs to entire programs. All pre-licensure programs still include substantial in-person clinical experiences at nursing facilities near the school. Examples of 100% online nursing programs in Orlando include Herzing University’s Post-Master’s Nursing Education Certificate program and UCF’s ASN to BSN. The nursing schools spotlighted below have extensive online offerings.

AdventHealth University

AdventHealth University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing is an excellent option for aspiring nurses. Whether you’re just beginning your career in healthcare or are looking to upgrade your skills and role, this nursing program will give you the foundation you need to excel. With a blend of in-person and online coursework, the program is structured to give you top-tier clinical experiences and coursework in a flexible environment.

You can complete the BSN program in just nine trimesters of full-time study, after which you’ll be prepared to take your NCLEX-RN exam. The program boasts an impressive first-time NCLEX pass rate of 83%.

Advent Health University is accredited by the CCNE, ensuring that you’ll receive a top-tier education.

Herzing University

Herzing University operates several campuses across the U.S., including one in Orlando. Herzing’s Orlando campus offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate nursing degree and certificate options. Students interested in obtaining RN licensure can choose from among several degree programs that prepare them to take the NCLEX-RN exam:

Additionally, current RNs can advance their careers through the RN to BSN program.

Graduate-level offerings include standard MSN and RN to MSN programs, both with five specialization options, and four post-master’s certificates. Almost all the nursing programs at Herzing include some distance learning, including post-master’s certificates that can be completed 100% online. As with most private schools, tuition costs are higher than for most public school nursing programs. However, financial aid options are available, including several scholarships exclusive to Herzing nursing students.

Seminole State College of Florida

Seminole State College is a member of the Florida College System. It operates on four campuses in Orlando-adjacent Seminole County. Seminole State offers several undergraduate nursing degree options with online coursework, including the Nursing Pathway Associate in Arts (AA) degree. The Nursing Pathway AA prepares students to transfer to a four-year nursing program where they can earn their BSN and complete the requirements to take the NCLEX-RN exam and become licensed RNs. The program is highly affordable and fully online.

Seminole State’s online RN to BSN program is open to current RNs and recent RN graduates eligible to take the NCLEX-RN exam. The program features 100% online asynchronous coursework and can be completed in as little as one year for approximately $5,000. Students can also take advantage of an RN to BSN/MSN option in which they complete three MSN courses through American Sentinel University that also apply to their BSN. Once they’ve completed their BSN program, students can advance into a fully online MSN program.

University of Central Florida

The University of Central Florida (UCF) offers fully online nursing programs from the bachelor’s to the doctoral level to help train and develop the next generation of healthcare leaders. By earning your bachelor’s in nursing, you can take the next step in your career and make an impact within the healthcare system.

The school’s online BSN includes 120 credit hours, and can typically be completed in four years or less. The program focuses on clinical nursing practice, health promotion and maintenance, and preparation for leadership roles. The baccalaureate curriculum will also provide you with the foundation for graduate study in nursing if you choose to continue your education.

If you’re already a Registered Nurse, you can pursue the RN-to-BSN track, which can be completed in as few as three semesters or as many as 10. If you have an ASN from the Florida College system, you can pursue an ASN to BSN path.

UCF Online is accredited by the CCNE and approved by the Florida State Board of Nursing.

Valencia College

The Valencia College School of Nursing offers a two-year Associate in Science (AS) degree program as well a four-year Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN) — both of which offer specialization options. For example, you can tailor your AS program to evening/weekend study or an accelerated track.

The general nursing program at Valencia College is limited access, meaning that admission to the College does not imply admission to the nursing program — you must apply and be accepted to the individual nursing program. Upon completion of the A.S. degree, you will be prepared to take the NCLEX- RN.

The Associate of Science in Nursing program at Valencia College is accredited by the ACEN, meaning you’re guaranteed to receive a high-quality education. The nursing program is also coordinated with local health care agencies, the State Department of Education and the State Board of Nursing.

Types of Nursing Programs Available in Orlando, FL

Nursing schools in Orlando offer so many different types of degrees and certificates that, at first glance, it’s practically impossible to know which one is the best for you. Here’s a breakdown of all the available undergraduate and graduate nursing degrees and certificates available in Orlando, FL to help you figure out the program and school that can best help you achieve your personal and professional goals. Understanding the many nursing degrees and certificate options available from nursing schools in NYC can be confusing. We’ve put together the following descriptions to help you figure out what program is best for meeting your personal and career goals.

Pre-Licensure Nursing Programs in Orlando

Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN)

The associate degree in nursing (ADN) (also known as an associate of science in nursing or ASN) is an entry-level nursing degree with the coursework and clinical training needed to take the NCLEX-RN exam. ADN degrees normally require two years of full-time study and are most often available at local community colleges, but some four-year college and university nursing schools offer them as well.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with this Program

College of Central Florida
Seminole State College of Florida

Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing (Traditional BSN)

The traditional BSN is a four-year pre-RN licensure program for students with little or no previous college and no professional nursing experience. Curriculums include general education coursework along with nursing courses and clinical hour requirements like those in ADN programs. Traditional BSNs are staples at four-year colleges and universities with nursing departments.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with this Program

AdventHealth University
University of Central Florida

Accelerated BSN Programs

Accelerated BSN programs (sometimes called second-degree BSNs) are for students with a bachelor’s degree in another field who are interested in becoming RNs. They provide the nursing coursework and clinical practice hours needed to take the NCLEX-RN exam, achieve RN licensure, and earn a BSN. Most students complete these programs in 15 months to two years.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with this Program

ECPI University
University of Central Florida

Nursing Bridge Programs in Orlando for Current Nurses

LPN to RN and LPN to BSN Programs

The LPN to RN program is for current LPNs interested in advancing their careers by qualifying for the NCLEX-RN exam and obtaining their RN license. Graduates typically receive an ADN, ASN, or AASN degree. LPN to BSN programs are for current LPNs seeking RN licensure who want advanced knowledge and skills offered in four-year BSN programs.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with this Program

Valencia College
Herzing University

RN to BSN Programs

RN to BSN programs allow currently RNs to earn a BSN degree, the academic credential quickly becoming a prerequisite for RN jobs with many employers. RN to BSN programs combine previously-earned college credits with additional nursing coursework to earn a BSN. Almost all Orlando-area four-year colleges and universities with nursing programs offer RN to BSN programs.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with this Program

College of Central Florida
Seminole State College of Florida

RN to MSN Programs

RN to MSN programs are for licensed RNs with either an ADN or nursing diploma who want to obtain their master’s in nursing without first earning their BSN. These programs sometimes require a previously-earned non-nursing bachelor’s degree. RN to MSN programs are usually part-time to accommodate working RNs, but full-time programs are not uncommon. Programs take 3 ½ to 4 years, and RN to BSN to MSN options are sometimes available.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with this Program

Herzing University
University of Central Florida

Advanced Nursing Programs in Orlando

Traditional MSN Programs (Master of Science in Nursing)

Nurses with a BSN degree interested in obtaining their nursing master’s can opt for a traditional MSN (BSN to MSN) program. These programs are often available in three-year full-time and four-year part-time options. Online MSN programs are available but typically include substantial face-to-face contact hour requirements.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with This Program

AdventHealth University
ECPI University

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) and PhD Doctoral Programs

The DNP degree is for nursing professionals seeking positions in nursing administration, policy-related, and advanced practice leadership positions. DNP programs are typically offered in nurse practitioner and other specialized nursing areas. PhD programs focus on preparing graduates for careers as nurse researchers and academics. Most programs require an MSN degree, but a few offer a BSN to doctorate. Program lengths vary substantially.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with This Program

AdventHealth University (Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice)
University of Central Florida (DNP and Phd)

Post-Graduate Nursing Certificates

Post-graduate nursing certificates allow those with MSN or doctoral degrees to gain additional knowledge and training in specialized areas and expand their career opportunities. Popular specializations include primary care, public health nursing, and nurse anesthesia, as well as the range of nurse practitioner fields. Completion times vary.

Examples of Orlando Nursing Schools with This Program

Herzing University
University of Central Florida

FAQs About Online Nursing Schools in Orlando

Can I earn my nursing degree in Orlando completely online?

That depends on the degree, program type, and the school you attend. All pre-licensure programs include substantial in-person clinical hour requirements. Some non-licensure degree programs and certificate programs can be completed 100% online.

Will my online Orlando nursing degree be considered less valuable by employers?

If your program is fully accredited and state-approved, it’s unlikely any employer would consider your nursing degree or certificate any less valuable than one earned in a traditional on-campus program. In fact, they likely won’t know you took any courses online unless you tell them.

Are online nursing programs in Orlando more affordable than campus programs?

This also depends on the program. In most cases, students enrolled in online nursing schools in Orlando pay the same tuition rates as their on-campus counterparts. However, the actual total cost of your online nursing program will likely be less once you factor in savings from not traveling to and from campus for classes.

Financial Aid Opportunities for Nursing Students in Orlando, Florida

Most students enrolling in nursing schools in Orlando qualify for funding help from one or more financial aid sources as long as their programs are properly accredited. These sources include scholarships and grants, fellowships and assistantships (mostly for grad students), employer tuition assistance programs, the GI Bill for active-duty military and veterans, and student loans. The most popular source of student loans is the federal government, which also sponsors loan repayment programs for nursing students.

For help in locating funding opportunities for your nursing program, contact your school’s financial aid office. Also visit EduMed’s nursing scholarship and main financial aid guides for more information and advice on paying for your Orlando nursing program.

How to Become an RN in Orlando: Licensing Requirements

Practicing as an RN in Orlando requires state RN licensure through the Florida Board of Nursing. Obtaining your RN license requires completing an approved RN degree or diploma program and passing the NCLEX-RN exam. There are other requirements as well, so make sure you understand the process before you enrolling in any pre-licensure nursing education program. For a detailed look at the steps, visit EduMed’s guide to nursing programs in Florida.

Job Opportunities for RNs in Orlando, Florida

According to the Florida Center for Nursing, nursing offered the highest number of annual job openings in the state of Florida — and have a projected growth of 12.2% by 2030. The latest BLS data also shows a positive trend for the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford area.

Given the shortage of nurses in the Orlando metro area, top employers like AdventHealth and Orlando Health are using creative methods to woo job seekers in a competitive market.

By starting your career in Orlando, you will have a plethora of career options as an RN.

How Much Can You Make as an Orlando RN?

According to the BLS data, the top 10% of nurses working in the metro area earn more than $100,000; the average salary for RNs, however, is around $76,970. By earning your RN licensure and degree in nursing, you are on a sure path to boosting your earnings potential.

Earnings for Registered Nurses in Orlando, Florida

Area Occupation Median 90th Percentile
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford Registered Nurses $76,970 $100,120

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, May 2022

Additional Orlando, FL Nursing Resources

Black Nurses Rock – Orlando

The Orlando chapter of Black Nurses Rock brings together nursing professionals to provide community health promotion in Central Florida. Services include health and wellness promotion and social advocacy in vulnerable communities, nursing student mentoring and scholarship opportunities, and more.

Central Florida Advanced Nursing Practice Council (CFANPC)

The CFANPC is a professional association of advanced practice nurses in the Orlando and greater Central Florida area organized to promote and improve the care APNs provide their patients. Resources include current news, event announcements, and a career center where visitors can search for local APN jobs and post their resumes.

Central Florida Black Nurses Association of Orlando (CFBNA)

This regional chapter of the National Black Nurses Association connects RNs, LPNs, and nursing students in the Orlando area whose purpose is to provide community health services to improve the quality of life for minority community members.

Florida Nurses Association (FNA) – East Central Region

The FNA is the Florida constituent of the American Nurses Association, the only professional association encompassing nursing professionals in all practice areas and specialties. The FNA annually awards nursing scholarships and grants to qualifying Florida RNs and students.

Florida Nursing Student Association (FNSA)

The FNSA is a student-run organization representing more than 5,000 nursing students throughout the state. It’s also the Florida affiliate of the National Student Nurses’ Association (NSNA). Orlando area nursing schools with FNSA chapters include UCF and Seminole State, but your school does not need a chapter for you to join.