How to Become an RN Fast
A career as a registered nurse (RN) is appealing for healthcare and non-healthcare professionals alike. Not only is the demand for nurses growing, but RNs also have the opportunity to care for others and work in a variety of healthcare settings. Plus, RNs earn an average annual salary of $71,730, with the highest 10 percent earning more than $106,530 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
Whether you have dreams of one day becoming a nurse or you already have experience in the healthcare field, there are various pathways you can take to become an RN quickly.
If you’re new to nursing:
No previous experience or education in the healthcare field? No problem. You can still become an RN in a few different ways.
Time: As little as 2 years
An associate of science in nursing (ASN) program will prepare you to take the National Council Licensing Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), and allow you to become an RN within two to three years. To qualify for Herzing’s ASN program, you need a high school diploma with a minimum 2.5 grade-point average as well as a composite score of at least 58 on the most current version of the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS). ASNs can work anywhere from the NICU or ICU to rehab centers, schools, nursing homes and more.
Time: As little as 3 years
A BSN is the next step up on the educational ladder, giving RNs the opportunity to advance in their careers and increase their earning potential. BSN salaries vary by state and can range from $58,340 to $106,950 according to the BLS. With Herzing’s traditional BSN program, much of the coursework is offered online for students who still plan to work full time.
Time: As little as 16 months
Already have a bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing related field? Then this could be the pathway for you. An ABSN program allows you to earn your BSN quickly. Because of the condensed time period, this is a demanding, fast-paced program that requires a lot time and effort. With an ABSN program, students can also choose to pursue a dual credit option to work toward their master’s of science in nursing (MSN) degree.
If you’re a nurse or a healthcare professional:
Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA) and Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) can choose the traditional ASN or BSN programs, or take advantage of bridge programs to earn their degree faster. Herzing University offers three different pathways for current healthcare professionals to become an RN:
Time: As little as 2 years
As an LPN, you have the opportunity to advance your career, take on additional duties and earn more money by getting your ASN. This is the fastest path available for becoming an RN, and the program can be completed in as little as two years. Available at Herzing’s Birmingham, Alabama and Orlando campuses, this program prepares you for the NCLEX-RN and all the responsibilities that come with being an RN, like performing diagnostic tests, administering medication and more.
Time: As little as 28 months
For current LPNs or licensed paramedics wanting to eventually earn an MSN, the LPN to BSN program may be the best option. With a bachelor’s degree, you have more opportunities for advancement than you would with an associate degree, as well as the chance to earn a slightly higher salary. With Herzing’s LPN to BSN program, available at the Kenosha, Madison and Brookfield campuses in Wisconsin and the Minneapolis campus, existing credits from previous training can be transferred, helping you quickly reach your goal of becoming an RN.
Bridge to BSN program
Time: 28-32 months
Herzing University offers several BSN options for students who have already earned a healthcare license, including:
- Practical Nurses (LPN)
- Cardiovascular techs (Orlando campus only)
- Respiratory therapists (Orlando campus only)
The program can be completed within 28-32 months, depending on the number of transferrable credit hours you have and which campus you attend.