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How International Students Earn through US Nursing Degrees

How International Students Earn through US Nursing Degrees

Misol Kwon a South Korean who attended Kodaikanal International School in the U.S. says how being exposed to cultural diversity and social responsibilities sparked an interest in the field of nursing. It is this passion that took Kwon to the U.S. where she pursued her BSN in 2013 from the University at Buffalo – SUNY. She echoes how the education system in the states encourages people to have big dreams and the way they value each dream to improve the society.

International students interested in pursuing a career in nursing have several options to consider at U.S. Universities. Students can pursue associate degrees, BSN, Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice and can have the option of either working there or return home.

International students wishing to pursue undergraduate nursing degrees have the option of pursuing an ADN or BSN while those that are already graduates are qualified to take the National Council Licensure Examination NCLEX for registered nurses. Colleges such as Midland in Texas and Massachusetts Bay Community College offer students a two-year AND at the community college level. Assistant director of marketing and communications at MassBay, Liz Cooper, says that the ADN program is available to international students and has no waitlist where she compares with other ADN programs that have one or two years.

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Josephine Namubiru, a Ugandan national who has a bachelor’s degree in environmental health science from the Makerere University School of Public Health is a recent graduate of MassBay’s ADN program. She shares her passion in choosing nursing to help the less fortunate back in her country and is currently studying for her NCLEX and has plans to enroll in the RN to BSN online program in the fall at Fitchburg State University in Massachusetts. The path provides a bridge for registered nurses to develop advanced skills and it's less expensive as it can be completed in about two years.

Prospective International students can also enroll a BSN degree from the University of Alabama or the University of Washington as they offer accelerated BSN that may be completed within six months faster than the regular BSN program. Kwon, a registered nurse in New York explains how her BSN program at the University at Buffalo was life-changing. She talks of the importance of evidence-based nursing and how she witnessed operations at the health facility first-hand while studying. Jacqueline Dunbar-Jacob, dean of the University of Pittsburgh School of Nursing says how prospective international students should consider pursuing their nursing programs at Pitt if they have an interest in developing clinical, leadership and research skills in nursing.

Universities offering these programs have variable requirements for instance, if a student is pursuing DNP at the University of Buffalo – SUNY include having the equivalent of a US bachelor’s degree, however, Jennifer Schreier, the nursing school's director of graduate student services says how some of the nursing credentials need evaluation and approval by the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools and a registered nurse license in New York.

Some of the students who have benefited from the program like Kwon share the positive experiences and how wonderful role models taught her to be compassionate and competent with a passion for excellence in Nursing. It is, however, to be noted that the tuition and fees may vary depending on the degree chosen and the schools. Scholarship availability can also vary depending on their availability. For instance, the tuition fees for the 2017-2018 academic year at the University of Pittsburgh for a student wishing to pursue a BSN program was $37,740 and $30,540 if he or she wished in taking a program in nursing.