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Duke University
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Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


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13 Easiest Nursing Schools to Get Into

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What’s Covered:


If you want to make a difference in the world by helping people, nursing could be the perfect career for you. There is always demand for more nurses, but programs can be competitive. Here’s a list of the 13 easiest nursing schools to get into. 


Nursing Schools with High Acceptance Rates


School Name


Acceptance Rate

University of Texas at El Paso

El Paso, TX


University of Kentucky

Lexington, KY


University of Wyoming

Laramie, WY


Loyola University New Orleans

New Orleans, LA


Maryville University

St. Louis, MO


St. Martin’s University

Lacey, WA


Spalding University

Louisville, KY


Union College (Nebraska)

Lincoln, NE


University of Mount Union

Alliance, OH


University of Southern Indiana

Evansville, IN


University of Southern Mississippi

Hattiesburg, MS


Wichita State University

Wichita, KS


Wright State University

Dayton, OH



Keep in mind, however, that university acceptance rate doesn’t tell the whole story. Most of these universities have separate admissions for their nursing schools once you’ve spent your first year completing pre-nursing requirements. This second round of admission requires good grades in pre-nursing courses and a minimum GPA.


Others may have direct admission from senior year in high school, using minimum ACT and high school GPA. These programs are often more competitive, but both routes will get you the same degree. Always aim above minimum requirements wherever you apply and check out our complete guide on how to become a nurse. 


1. University of Texas at El Paso 

Location: El Paso, TX

Acceptance rate: 100%

Undergraduate enrollment: 21,400

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 940-1130 SAT, 17-22 ACT


The University of Texas at El Paso is known for its distinctive Bhutanese dzong architecture and for being the second largest Hispanic-serving institution in the country, with an over 80% Hispanic student body. UTEP’s nursing program is ranked 30th out of over 350 Southwestern nursing schools, with an impressive 97.5% NCLEX-RN pass rate. You become eligible for the nursing school after 4-5 semesters of pre-nursing courses with at least a 3.0 collegiate GPA, but the average admitted into nursing has a 3.77. 


2. University of Kentucky  

Location: Lexington, KY

Acceptance rate: 96%

Undergraduate enrollment: 22,100

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1070-1310 SAT, 22-29 ACT


The University of Kentucky has the largest library of all US public universities and a huge focus on research. The nursing track at UK requires admittance to the pre-nursing program, which requires a minimum 3.4 high school GPA. In your freshman year, you will take prerequisite courses and must maintain at least a 3.0 GPA as well as complete an interview to be admitted to the College of Nursing. 


3. University of Wyoming   

Location: Laramie, WY

Acceptance rate: 96%

Undergraduate enrollment: 9,900

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1050-1240 SAT, 21-28 ACT


With the largest study-abroad scholarship endowment in the nation for land-grant universities, the University of Wyoming is committed to giving its students a global education. Freshman admits to the nursing major must have a minimum 2.75 high school GPA and complete prerequisite courses in their first year with a 3.0 GPA. Overall, the university’s nursing majors have a 90.91% NCLEX-RN examination pass rate.


4. Loyola University New Orleans  

Location: New Orleans, LA

Acceptance rate: 75%

Undergraduate enrollment: 2,900

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1060-1260 SAT, 22-28 ACT


99% of all Loyola students receive some sort of financial aid to fully take advantage of the school’s 12:1 student-faculty ratio. Loyola University New Orleans offers a direct admit program to the College of Nursing, meaning that as long as you maintain a 3.0 GPA, you will be admitted.


5. Maryville University 

Location: St. Louis, MO

Acceptance rate: 83%

Undergraduate enrollment: 3,600

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1040-1250 SAT, 20-25 ACT


With miles of walking trails on campus along with two lakes and creeks, Maryville is a great place for the nature-inclined despite being just 20 minutes from downtown St. Louis. More importantly, Maryville offers freshman direct entry into the Bachelor’s of Nursing program. A minimum 3.25 high school GPA is required, with a 3.0 in STEM classes.


6. Saint Martin’s University

Location: Lacey, WA

Acceptance rate: 96%

Undergraduate enrollment: 1,300

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 970-1170 SAT, 19-24 ACT


Saint Martin’s is one of just 13 Benedectine colleges, and still has a functioning monastery on campus! Saint Martin’s has a direct admission program to its Bachelor’s of Nursing as long as you have a 3.0 high school GPA. However, you must maintain a 3.0 college GPA and get a B- and above in all nursing prerequisite classes in your freshman and sophomore years before taking advanced nursing classes.

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7. Spalding University  

Location: Louisville, KY

Acceptance rate: 96%

Undergraduate enrollment: 1,000

Middle 50% SAT/ACT:  N/A


With a unique block schedule and 11 students on average per class, Spalding gives a world-class education. Once admitted to Spalding, you need to maintain a 2.75 GPA in four science courses for admission to the College of Nursing. You must also have a minimum score of 60 on each section of the TEAS (Test of Essential Academic Skills), which you can take during your first year. 


8. Union College (Nebraska) 

Location: Lincoln, NE

Acceptance rate: 93%

Undergraduate enrollment: 700

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 1210-1400 SAT, 28-33 ACT


Union College is a Seventh-day Adventist college with a 9:1 student faculty ratio and an average class size of 11. To be admitted to the nursing program, you must complete prerequisite courses with a C or better and have an overall 2.75 collegiate GPA or above. 


9. University of Mount Union  

Location: Alliance, OH

Acceptance rate: 77%

Undergraduate enrollment: 2,200

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 970-1200 SAT, 20-26 ACT


Founded in 1862, Mount Union is a liberal arts college where 98% of students receive some form of financial aid. Its campus in Ohio is complete with a 162 acre nature center. It has a direct-entry program into the nursing school, meaning you can take nursing courses from your freshman year. “Priority consideration” for direct admission requires a 3.3 high school GPA and a 23 on the ACT. Nursing students at Mount Union have a 98% NCLEX-RN pass rate.


10. University of Southern Indiana

Location: Evansville, IN

Acceptance rate: 93%

Undergraduate enrollment: 9,500

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 990-1170 SAT, 19-25 ACT


The University of Southern Indiana is a public university in suburban Evansville with a sleek modern campus. It has a direct admission program from senior year, so long as you have a 3.5 high school GPA and a 26 ACT or a 1240 SAT. The program also has conditional direct admission if your GPA is from 3.4-3.49. Finally, standard admission is an option after you have taken 31 credit hours in the nursing curriculum. USI has a 98.5% NCLEX-RN pass rate.


11. University of Southern Mississippi 

Location: Hattiesburg, MS

Acceptance rate: 93%

Undergraduate enrollment: 11,900

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 19-26 ACT (ACT only)


A school with huge spirit and pride in their black and gold school colors, the University of Southern Mississippi boasts a 95% NCLEX-RN pass rate for its nursing students. Early admission to the nursing program requires a 3.5 high school GPA and a minimum ACT of 25. Once admitted, you must maintain good academic standing while completing prerequisite courses. For standard admission, students need a minimum 2.5 GPA in nursing prerequisites and at least a 21 ACT. USM also requires that you take the Kaplan Nursing Admissions test, which can be scheduled through the school. 


12. Wichita State University 

Location: Wichita, KS

Acceptance rate: 92%

Undergraduate enrollment: 13,000

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 910-1220 SAT, 21-27 ACT


Wichita State is Kansas’s most diverse college and is fully committed to ensuring its students have a good time. Wichita State hosts unique, local food trucks five days a week and has billiards, bowling, and restaurants in the center of campus. You can be admitted to the nursing program after maintaining a 2.75 overall collegiate GPA while completing the prerequisite nursing courses with at least a 3.0 GPA. You must also have a 27 ACT or an 1130 SAT. 


13. Wright State University 

Location: Dayton, OH

Acceptance rate: 95%

Undergraduate enrollment: 10,900

Middle 50% SAT/ACT: 970-1130 SAT, 18-25 ACT


Named to honor the Wright Brothers, who conducted the tests of the world’s first airplane a short distance from campus, Wright State University has a 97% NCLEX-RN pass rate. The traditional pathway to a Bachelor’s of Nursing starts in sophomore year and requires you to complete all prerequisite courses with a C or higher while maintaining a 2.75 GPA your freshman year. The direct admit program asks for a 3.25 high school GPA, a 22 ACT, and completion of 2 college classes with a 3.0 GPA.


How to Increase Your Chances of Acceptance


1. Get good grades overall and especially in your STEM courses.


Nursing requires a superior understanding of science, strong memory, and good work ethic. You can prove you have these by getting good grades in your classes, especially those that will align with nursing course requirements. If your school offers classes like anatomy, physiology, or sports medicine, take them. Taking rigorous STEM classes like AP Psych, AP Stats, and AP Calculus can also show that you are ready for a college course load and prepare you for some of your nursing classes.  


2. Aim for a strong SAT score.


Getting a good SAT/ACT score shows universities that you’re ready for the rigor of collegiate coursework and gives them confidence in your ability to succeed. Some nursing schools pay special attention to your performance on the SAT math section. Check out our SAT guides and ACT Guides for free tips and practice questions that will help you improve your score.


3. Participate in relevant extracurriculars.


During high school, get closer to the medical field through your extracurriculars. This will demonstrate your interest, while also telling you if nursing and medicine is a career you want to pursue long term. Medicine related extracurriculars can be anything from organizing blood drives or volunteering at a local nursing home to starting a club at your school. 


Another idea is shadowing a nurse at work or doing an informational interview to find out more about the job. You can contact your doctor’s office to set one of these up, or ask your school counselor. 


4. Write a compelling personal statement.


Being a good nurse requires more than just excelling in school. It also requires a passion and commitment to helping people through some of the most vulnerable times of their lives, which you can show through your personal statement. Take time with this and start early to show the most accurate version of you. You can see our tips for writing a strong personal statement to make sure you do your story justice.


5. Review your chances on CollegeVine.

With a free Collegevine account, you can find your personal chances of admission to these schools, as well as receive expert college advice throughout your application process. Learn how to improve your profile, build your college list, and get your essays edited by peers. Sign up for your Collegevine account today and take the next step in your application process.


Short Bio
Shane Zhang is currently a high school senior matriculating at Yale University in Fall 2021. In his free time, he likes to rock climb, bike with friends, and drink too much kombucha.