OHSU Reputation?


  • Specializes in ICU. Has 6 years experience.

I'm looking for Oregon natives' opinions on OHSU school and hospitals. I've read good things about the school of nursing...but I'd like to know how those around the area view the school. Does it have a good reputation? Do employers like hiring those with education from OHSU? Are they known for producing excellent nurses/NPs? Can anyone share their opinions on the school with me....even through PM if you don't feel comfortable sharing on this post? Thank you!!!


468 Posts

I've since transplanted elsewhere but I was under the impression that OHSU is very respected.


3 Posts

I'll start by saying that I went to a nursing school in Portland other than OHSU, and that I have not worked for OHSU, so I'm not giving you any first hand information of what it's like, only what other people have told me about their experiences and various perspectives that I've heard.

The OHSU name is obviously well regarded with the general public as they associate it with the medical school, research, etc. It has "name recognition" outside of the nursing community that other schools do not have. In this way, it is not so special for those within the nursing community. Those in the nursing profession will be fully aware of the other schools in the area and will have interacted with students/nurses from all of them.

I personally think all of the long-standing BSN programs (OHSU, Linfield, U of Portland) in the Portland area are comparable. There's some newer ones that are probably good too, I just don't know many people that have gone to them. I've had friends and nurses I work with from all three of the programs that I mentioned, and there have been both "good" nurses and "not as good" nurses. Obviously what I think makes a good nurse could be different from you or someone else. I also don't know if whether or not someone is a good nurse is really an accurate reflection on the quality of the school.

Several friends of mine have gone to various nursing schools in Portland, and they all have both good things and bad things to say about each one. My nursing school cohort and I also had good and bad things to say about our school. Nursing students like to complain, and the nursing school process is always evolving with the changing healthcare and educational environment.

The OHSU School of Nursing is ranked by US NEWS and World Report, but keep in mind that it is ranking their graduate school, not the undergraduate BSN program. And if that is what you're basing your understanding of the school on, you should really look into the many criticisms of those ranking for graduate schools, medical schools, hospitals, etc. I had a nurse that went to OHSU for her bachelors who said it felt like the BSN program took a back seat to the graduate school of nursing. To counter that though, a nurse I work with now speaks very highly of her BSN education at OHSU.

Like I said before, I think all of the schools I mentioned are going to give you a good education, and probably some of the newer ones as well. Remember that you don't stop learning once you graduate. Much of the learning and practicing you do that will make you a knowledgeable and confident nurse (without being naive and overly confident) is going to come from your first job.

I'd encourage you to go and visit all of the schools you are thinking about to see how it feels to you. That is an important factor to consider. I definitely felt at home when I visited the school I attended. Also, unless you're really confident you will get accepted, apply everywhere. There is no sense in not applying even if the school isn't your top pick or because of a application fee that will be minsequal in comparison to the cost of tuition or delaying school for another year. Speaking of cost, don't discount the private schools because of their cost. Virtually all students at private schools receive some kind of scholarship/grant package. No one is paying the full "sticker price" at private schools. Apply, and see what kind of aid you get.

In regards to hiring, going to OHSU will give you a better chance of getting a job at OHSU, not because of the name recognition or anything, but because you're more likely to get clinical placements at OHSU if you're in their SON. If you have a practicum placement at OHSU and you do well (and the unit is actually hiring), you stand a good chance of getting a job there. Students from other nursing schools may have clinicals at OHSU, but OHSU students get priority. Many students from my nursing school had clinical placements at OHSU though, and a few of them who did their senior practicum at OHSU ended up getting jobs. Also, going to another school might give you an advantage at another hospital. U of P students have many placements at Providence hospitals, and often seem to get jobs there (both U of P and Providence are catholic, and U of P SON started at the old St. Vincents hospital). Linfield is affiliated with Legacy Good Sam, so they may have an advantage with Legacy hospitals.

As to the strength of the NP programs, I really can't speak to that.

I've tried to be as unbiased as possible here, but everyone has a bias, whether they are aware of it or not, myself included.

Hope that helps, and good luck in your search! If you have any other questions feel free to ask!


281 Posts

Specializes in ICU. Has 6 years experience.

Thank you! It's their grad program I was actually wondering more about. But- good program or not- I got accepted and will be headed up there in 2 weeks! (Ahh!!) Thanks for the info, though, about the undergrad rep and the detailed response to my question! I appreciate the help!!