"Approved" by the state BON means that the school meets the minimum requirements established by the BON for graduates to be eligible to write the NCLEX and get licensed. "Accreditation" means that the school has voluntarily met a higher
level of standards established by an independent professional organization. When you talk about nursing programs
, there are two different kinds of accreditation to consider.
The first is general academic accreditation. The ACCSC (American Council on Career Schools and Colleges, I believe) is one of the accrediting bodies the proprietary (for-profit) tech/voc schools created that only
accredit proprietary tech/voc schools, so that they can tell potential students they're "accredited" and be telling the truth (and most of their potential students don't know enough to ask any further questions, which is what they're counting on
). Because this is not one of the organizations that accredits "regular" colleges and universities, and the proprietary tech/voc schools don't have to meet the same academic and professional standards that "regular" colleges and universities do, it's unlikely that any credits from Concorde would be accepted by any "regular" colleges or universities if/when you wanted to further your education -- you would pretty much have to start over from scratch.
The second kind of accreditation to consider is nursing
accreditation (the NLNAC and CCNE are the two nursing organizations that accredit nursing schools -- accreditation by either organization is equally good). Concorde is does not have nursing
accreditation, and graduating from a program without nursing accreditation can create problems for you throughout your career. Although you would be able to get licensed and shouldn't have any problems endorsing your license to other states if you wished, many (most?) programs for continuing education in nursing (BSN completion programs and graduate programs) will only accept graduates of accredited programs, and a growing number of healthcare employers (including, I believe, the US military and the VA system, although I'm happy to be corrected if I'm wrong about that) will only hire graduates of accredited programs -- not all
employers, certainly; not even most
, but why close off any future career opportunities for yourself this early in the process?
Concorde will not explain any of this to you, because they are mostly interested in getting you to sign up and pay them a lot of money -- a lot
more money than a nursing program in a public community college would cost, and you'd probably get a better nursing education at the CC (and courses from a community college will transfer to other schools, and the program probably has NLNAC accreditation). IMO, there's no good justification or rationale for paying a lot of tuition for courses that can't be transferred freely into other schools, or a program that doesn't have nursing accreditation.
Best wishes for your journey!