TAMPA FL - Nursing Schools/R.N. Programs??

by mm813 (New) New


I've decided to pursue a career in nursing and am actively searching for an R.N. Program.

I am aware of the positives and negatives of St. Pete College and HCC, the positives being cost and reputation, and the negatives being limited access/waiting lists.

I am very eager to get started with and complete my education so I'm considering private nursing colleges. I would greatly appreciate any advice, opinions, and/or recommendations that any of you could offer me.

The schools that are on my list of possible choices include Galen, South University, Jersey College, Concorde, and Breckenridge/ITT.

My priorities in choosing a program are firstly the quality of the education and the schedules available (I will need to be working as much as possible while going to school, and may need to consider going part time), and secondly the cost and location.

Thank you for your time and for any help you can offer!

NurseGirl525, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU. 3,663 Posts

Here is my 2 cents. Do not, whatever you do go to a for profit college. ITT is one of the worst. Not only are they expensive, most are not even accredited, have low NCLEX pass rates, and your chances of getting a job afterwards are slim. Research the schools and job market in your area. You need to see what the hospitals are hiring and look at differing programs and degrees. There is so much that goes into it.

And although you are eager to get this started, beware of schools that tell you they have the fast track to nursing. There really isn't one. First prereqs need to be completed, then entrance exams taken, applying to the program, then waiting for that acceptance letter. Then you do the program, graduate, take NCLEX, and hopefully pass and get to apply for a job.

Be aware that many markets in the country are saturated with new grad nurses and it is hard to find a job. So make sure this is something you want to do before diving in. I see so many people that come in here not understanding what a nurse does and think this is the answer to all of life's problems. A lot already have a degree so financial aid is no longer available, don't understand what acreditation means, and what their job market is, so they can't find a job. Do your research, pick the appropriate school, and good luck on your journey.


5 Posts

Thanks for your reply, I appreciate the wisdom. I definitely want to do this the right way. I don't want to waste time/money/effort on a school that isn't worth it.


86 Posts

For profit schools are expensive but the graduation rates/ Nclex passing rates are high for the most part. If you have the money the smaller class sizes might not be so terrible. They are all inclusive too. You won't be spending an additional fortune on books or exams. Most for profit schools offer Kaplan courses for the Nclex at no additional costs. These things add up. I hope these positives for profit education help! Also, Make sure the accreditation lines up with your ultimate goals IE if you plan on getting your BSN at a traditional college your credits won't transfer. Any counselor will be able to answer those questions! Any institution will be able to tell you where their previous students have been hired! It's good to know these things before you commit to a program. (:

Be very wary of some of those "for-profit" schools. They seem to be popping up all over the place, especially in Florida. Here's a link to a pdf file showing NCLEX pass rates for all of the Florida schools:


Lots of things can impact NCLEX pass rates, but anything lower than a 90% first time pass rate on a consistent basis should raise red flags. Some of the schools on your list have horrible pass rates. I would hate to see someone invest a great deal of time and money in one of these sketchy programs, only to have them end up with a mountain of debt, no license and no recourse. Buyer beware!


707 Posts

You're not going to be able to go to SPC so I would write that off your list right now if you're not a Pinellas county resident.

SPC only considers non-Pinellas county residents after all other Pinellas county residents have been accepted. So, if you're not a resident, even with a 4.0 and all prerequisites done you're not going to be accepted.