10 Best Accelerated Nursing Programs in Minnesota Today

If you’re considering accelerated nursing programs in Minnesota, we’ve got the best 10 listed for you. We’ve made sure to include each program’s duration and the NCLEX-RN first-time pass rate to help with your research.

Our list of best accelerated nursing programs in Minnesota includes 7 Accelerated BSNs and 3 Direct-Entry/Entry-Level MSNs. All these programs are accredited and approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing.

But first, here is a visual graphic for:

Best 10 Accelerated Nursing Programs in Illinois, Ranked by NCLEX-RN Pass Rate

7 Best Accelerated BSN Programs in Minnesota

1. Bethel University of Minnesota- Post-Baccalaureate BSN

The Bethel University Post-Baccalaureate BSN is a 47-credit-hour Accelerated BSN program designed for people with a non-nursing bachelor’s degree. Depending on your cohort, you can complete your degree in as few as 15 months if you join the summer cohort, or take a slightly longer route with the 20-month fall cohort.

Duration: 15 months or 20 months

Format: Hybrid

Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

Clinical Experience

You’ll complete over 500 clinical hours at clinical agencies located in the Twin Cities area. These sites include hospital units, transitional care units, and population/community settings.

You get to work with diverse patients across the lifespan—maternal/newborn, pediatrics (infants to teens), adults, and older adults—and care for individuals, families, and communities, addressing holistic needs including health promotion/disease prevention and managing acute and chronic illnesses.

About Bethel University

Bethel University is a private Christian college that started in 1871. It’s affiliated with Converge, a Baptist group. The school’s nursing program focuses on training nurses who show Christ-like kindness and can excellently serve a changing society with different cultures.

Over the past four years, 92.7% of their nursing students have passed the NCLEX-RN exam on the first try.

2. Concordia University, St. Paul- BSN Pre-licensure

The BSN Pre-licensure program at Concordia University, St. Paul can be completed over five semesters, spanning only the fall and spring semesters. There are no classes during the summer semesters- perhaps giving you a chance to recharge!

Duration: Approx 20 months

Format: On-campus

Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

The program consists of 61 credit hours and admits each fall and spring semester.

Clinical Experiences

Right from your first semester, you will be engaged in clinical learning experiences. You will complete over 700 hours of clinicals in a diverse range of healthcare and community-based settings throughout the Twin Cities metropolitan region.

About Concordia University, St. Paul

Concordia University, St. Paul, is a private university that was set up in 1893. It’s part of the Concordia University System run by the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod, the second-largest Lutheran church body in the U.S.

The nursing program is based on Christian values. It aims to transform students into exceptional nursing leaders who appreciate lifelong learning, curiosity, and resilience in the ever-changing healthcare field.

Over the last 4 years, approximately 89.3% of their nursing students have passed the NCLEX-RN exam on their first try.

3. The College of Saint Scholastica- Post-Baccalaureate Nursing

The Post-Baccalaureate Nursing program at The College of Saint Scholastica is a fast-paced ABSN program that will see you complete your studies in just three semesters or 12 months- among the shortest of all accelerated nursing programs in Minnesota!

Duration: 12 months

Format: On-campus

Location: Duluth or St. Cloud, Minnesota

Despite the compact timeframe, you’ll cover 45 credits of thorough coursework.

Clinical Experience

You’ll engage in clinical learning experiences with real patients across different patient-care settings-including acute, ambulatory, and community clinical sites. The program takes the burden of securing clinical placements off your shoulders.

The Director of Educational Experiences arranges all clinical placements for both the Duluth and St. Cloud program locations. In Duluth, you’ll primarily practice at Essentia St. Mary’s and St. Luke’s hospital.

Meanwhile, St. Cloud program participants can look forward to placements at agencies in the Twin Cities metro area, as well as Centra Care in St. Cloud.

About The College of St. Scholastica

The College of St. Scholastica (CSS) was established in 1912 as a private college with roots in the Benedictine tradition. For over a century, it has been training students for fruitful healthcare careers, guided by its foundational Catholic Benedictine values.

Over the past four years, around 81.7% of its nursing students have passed the NCLEX-RN exam on their first attempt.

4. University of Northwestern – Saint Paul- Accelerated BSN Path

The Accelerated BSN Path at the University of Northwestern – St. Paul mimics the same material as the traditional BSN program, with a distinct twist in how the terms are arranged.

Your journey through this 59-credit program will be concentrated over four consecutive terms, beginning in May and ending in September of the following year.

Duration: 16 months

Format: On-campus

Location: Saint Paul, Minnesota

Clinical Experiences

Your clinical rotations will be in premier hospitals such as Fairview’s HealthEast System (Woodwinds & St Johns), Children’s Masonic Hospital, and others. You’ll also gain valuable experience in mental health and community agencies.

Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in clinicals and preceptorships at renowned institutions like Mayo and St. Cloud VA.

A Global Nursing Perspective

One of the highlights of this program is the transcultural course in Term 3, which includes a required international trip. Students have traveled to countries such as Zambia, Jamaica, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Ireland, Ecuador, Israel, and Ukraine.

You’ll gain a global perspective on nursing practices and healthcare systems, which will enrich your educational experience and broaden your worldview.

About University of Northwestern-Saint Paul

UNW-Saint Paul is a private Christian university founded in 1902. The School of Nursing aims to teach nursing from a Christ-centered perspective. They focus on preparing students with the professional skills they need to serve others and take on leadership roles.

Over the last four years, 93.3% of their nursing students have passed the NCLEX-RN exam on their first try.

5. Concordia College, Minnesota- Accelerated BSN

This 54-credit program provides an accelerated path to a BSN degree in just 12 months. Each cohort, comprising 16-20 students, begins in January and completes in December of the same year.

Duration: 12 months

Format: On-campus

Location: Moorhead, Minnesota

This ABSN program is designed to meet the requirements for public health nurse certification in Minnesota.

Clinical Experience

Clinicals are done in numerous healthcare facilities that serve Fargo-Moorhead and the surrounding areas. The program requires over 600 hours of clinical experience, ensuring that you’re well-prepared to face the practical challenges of nursing.

About Concordia College, Minnesota

Concordia College, Minnesota, is a private college focused on liberal arts. It was established by Norwegian settlers in 1891 and is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Over the past four years, their nursing program has had an impressive average pass rate of 93.6% on the NCLEX-RN exam on the first try.

6. Herzing University Minneapolis- Accelerated BSN

Herzing University, Minneapolis offers you an accelerated nursing program, designed to be completed in as few as 20 months. It is a 57-credit curriculum. The program has rolling admissions, with no set application deadlines.

Duration: 20 months

Format: On-campus

Location: St. Louis Park, Minnesota

Dual Credit Advantage

As a student in this accelerated program, you earn dual credit toward an MSN. This saves both time and money if you pursue higher nursing qualifications.

About Herzing University

Herzing University was founded in 1965. It is a private university based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It has many locations across the US, including Minneapolis. The university provides degree programs in areas like nursing, technology, business, and healthcare.

Their nursing program at Minnesota has achieved an average pass rate of 73.8% on the NCLEX-RN exam for first-time takers over the last four years.

7. Rasmussen University- Accelerated BSN

The Rasmussen University Accelerated BSN program can be completed in a span of 18 months. You’ll have to complete 53 core credits.

Duration: 18 months

Format: Hybrid

Location: Bloomington, Minnesota

About Rasmussen University

Rasmussen University is a private, for-profit university, established in 1900. It has several locations across the US, including Minnesota. The nursing program at Rasmussen University has a first-time NCLEX-RN exam pass rate of 88.7% on average over the past four years.

3 Best Direct Entry/Entry Level MSN Programs in Minnesota

1. University of Minnesota- Master of Nursing accelerated prelicensure

The University of Minnesota’s Master of Nursing (MN) accelerated pre-licensure program gets you ready for the NCLEX-RN exam in just 16 months and is structured around a comprehensive curriculum of 51 credit hours.

Duration: 16 months

Format: On-campus

Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota

This program kicks off every summer.

Clinical Experience

The university has partnerships with over 250 health and community organizations where you’ll clock approximately 500 mandatory practicum hours.

During your final semester, you can express your preference for the type of clinical setting you want. The university tries to secure your preferred placement.

Entry Level MN Acceptance Rate

This program is in high demand, with an acceptance rate of just under 30% on average. You’d better put your best foot forward during the application process!

Public Health Certification

After completing, you’ll be eligible for certification in public health nursing in Minnesota.

About University of Minnesota School of Nursing

The University of Minnesota is a public research university in Minneapolis and Saint Paul. Its School of Nursing was established in 1909. In 2023, the School of Nursing was the first to gain associate member status from the United Nations NGO.

The school aims to shape nursing’s future and promote equitable healthcare for everyone’s health and wellbeing.

Over the past four years, this Entry Level Master in Nursing program has achieved a first-time NCLEX-RN exam pass rate of 95.2% on average.

2. Metropolitan State University- Entry Level MSN

The Entry-Level MSN program at Metro State spans seven semesters. Throughout the course, you’ll engage in 62 credits of nursing coursework, which will form a sturdy foundation for your nursing competencies and clinical expertise.

Duration: Approx 23 months

Format: Hybrid

Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

Clinical Experience

Clinical rotations are in large healthcare systems and community clinics. You’ll also step into the realms of rural health, retail health, on-site health services, and urgent care settings, each presenting their unique challenges and learning opportunities.

About Metro State

Metropolitan State University, known as Metro State, is a public university in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area of Minnesota. Established in 1971, it’s part of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system and serves over 10,000 students.

The Metro State Entry Level MSN program has had a 94% average first-time pass rate on the NCLEX-RN exam over the past four years.

3. Saint Catherine University- Entry Level MSN

St. Kate’s accelerated MSN program spans 23 months and consists of 51 credit hours. The program starts in spring.

Duration: 23 months

Format: On-campus

Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

Clinical Experience

St. Kate’s School of Nursing has affiliations with major health systems in the Twin Cities area, including Allina, Fairview, HealthEast, HealthPartners North Memorial, Park Nicollet, and more. They also have partnerships with the Benedictine Health Systems, Presbyterian Homes, numerous school districts, and a variety of nonprofit agencies.

About St. Kate’s

St. Catherine University is a private Catholic university that was set up in 1905 by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. It was Initially established as a higher education institute for women, but it’s now open to all genders. The university’s catholic social teaching tradition guides its programs.

St. Kate’s Entry Level Master of Science in Nursing program has recorded a 91.7% average first-time pass rate on the NCLEX-RN exam over the past four years.

NB: St. Kate’s Entry Level MSN is not currently CCNE-accredited. It is however accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing.

Typical Admission Requirements for Accelerated Nursing Programs in Minnesota

  1. Bachelor’s Degree: From an accredited institution in any field other than nursing.
  2. GPA: A minimum GPA usually around 3.0 is generally required, although this can vary by program. Concordia College, Minnesota for example accepts a minimum GPA of 2.5.
  3. Prerequisite Courses: Commonly required courses include Anatomy & Physiology, Microbiology, Statistics, Chemistry, and sometimes courses in Psychology or Sociology.
  4. Letters of Recommendation: Most programs require at least two letters of recommendation- preferably coming from academic or professional sources who can speak to your potential as a nursing student.
  5. Nursing Personal Statement or Essay: This is your opportunity to explain why you want to pursue a career in nursing and why you’re interested in the program.
  6. Interview: Some programs may require an interview as part of the admission process.
  7. TEAS or HESI A2 Exam: Some programs may require the TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills) or HESI A2 (Health Education Systems, Inc. Admission Assessment) exam. These tests are designed to assess a student’s preparedness for the nursing program.
  8. Criminal Background Check: Due to the nature of the work, most programs will require a criminal background check.
  9. Health and Immunization Records: Since you will be participating in clinical rotations, most programs will require proof of certain immunizations and may also require a recent physical exam.

For each program you’re considering, visit their website to see the actual entrance requirements.

Why Pursue an Accelerated Nursing Program in Minnesota?

Minnesota enacted the Nurse and Patient Safety Act on May 26, 2023, a clear demonstration of the state’s commitment to strengthening the nursing workforce.

One important provision of the act is the expansion of the Hospital Nursing Education Loan Forgiveness program. This makes direct care nurses in nonprofit hospitals eligible for loan forgiveness.

Although the Minnesota Nurses Association had initially hoped for the passage of the more nurse-friendly “Keeping Nurses at the Bedside Act”, this new legislation is still a significant step forward.

It enhances the working conditions for nurses, aiming to increase nurse retention in hospitals throughout the state. And with a pro-nurse majority in the Minnesota legislature, there is potential for further improvements in nursing work conditions in the state.

This presents a great moment to consider accelerated nursing programs in Minnesota. The state’s commitment to improving working conditions, coupled with the possibility of student loan forgiveness, is an indication of a future rewarding nursing career in Minnesota.


  • Information on these programs may change without notice. So, we cannot guarantee their authenticity and accuracy. You’d have to check with the school and do further research. Our review list is simply for guidance and cannot be relied upon exclusively without research on your part.
  • Before enrollment, check with your state regarding licensing rules or whether your desired program meets your home state’s certification requirements and licensure.
  • If you are an administrator/staff for one of the schools listed in this article, and you would like to issue corrections or updates on your program’s information, please contact us here.

Related Nursing Resources:

Guide to Accelerated Nursing Programs: What are they?

Pros and Cons of Accelerated Nursing Programs

8 Best TEAS Prep Courses Today, According to Nursing Students

How to Write the Nursing School Personal Statement: Steps, Tips, And Samples

13 Best Books for Nursing Students to Read- Reviewed

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