Nursing Degree Programs

The Florida healthcare industry continues to demonstrate a strong demand for Registered Nurses. A career in Nursing requires individuals to provide compassionate, comprehensive care to their patients in a variety of clinical settings. It is a dynamic profession supported by continuous learning, advancements in technology and a rapidly changing medical landscape. Polk State College’s Florida Nursing degree programs offer students a truly immersive education with the opportunity to advance their career goals through the RN to BSN program.

Polk State’s Florida Nursing Degree Programs

Nursing Associate Degree Program

Polk State College is proud to offer two education tracks for our Associate of Science degree in nursing program. These education tracks allow students to complete their RN degree in one to two years. Our nursing school graduates consistently exceed the Florida and National averages on the licensing exam to be a Registered Nurse (RN).

Polk State’s Associate in Science in Nursing program is a limited-access program. Admission to the program is through a separate application process that occurs in spring (for fall admission) and fall (for spring admission). Applicants for admission to the program must first apply and be accepted to Polk State College before applying for admission to the nursing program.

RN to BSN Baccalaureate Degree Program

The RN to BSN degree program is designed to help graduates with an associate degree or diploma in nursing to advance their education and career goals. Students will gain a deeper understanding of nursing leadership and interpersonal communication.

Accredited Nursing School

The Associate of Science and Baccalaureate nursing programs at Polk State College at the Lakeland campus located in Lakeland, Florida and the Winter Haven campus located in Winter Haven, Florida are accredited by the:

Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850
Atlanta, GA 30326
(404) 975-5000

The most recent accreditation decision made by the ACEN Board of Commissioners for both the Associate of Science nursing program and the Baccalaureate nursing program is Continuing accreditation.  The next visit for both programs is Fall 2025.

View the public information disclosed by the ACEN regarding the programs at http://www.acenursing.us/accreditedprograms/programSearch.htm

Success Indicators

  • Program Completion: The average completion rate for the past three years is 74% for the Generic Option and 77% for the Transition Option of the AS program. Only about 50% of BSN students who started the program have completed the program.  Students commonly stop-out for a few terms and the most frequently cited reason is job and family responsibilities.
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: Graduates of the Polk State ADN program consistently exceed the state and national averages on the NCLEX-RN. The most recent results are shown below. The RN to BSN students do not take any additional licensing exams.
    NCLEX-RN Pass Rate
    Comparisons
    201820192020 2nd Qtr
    Polk State College94.0795.398.15
    State of Florida80.7471.8672.87
    National92.2288.1889.27
  • Employment and Continued Education: All AS graduates are employed in health care upon graduation to the best of our knowledge. RN to BSN students are predominantly employed when they start the program and maintain that employment after graduation.  Ninety percent (90%) of the currently enrolled BSN students are Polk State AS graduates, commonly entering the BSN program shortly after graduation. We frequently receive communication from the BSN graduates indicating they have been accepted into Master’s degree programs and are completing those programs satisfactorily.

Licensure

Completion of program requirements for the Associate Degree in Nursing program makes you eligible to apply to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) for a license as a Registered Nurse in Florida or one of the other 27 nursing compact states if you apply for a multi-state license under the enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC).  A list of current compact states can be located on the National Council of State Boards of Nursing website https://www.ncsbn.org/compacts.htm.

Polk State College cannot confirm whether this degree program meets educational requirements for professional licensure in other states outside of the compact states. Since the ADN program at Polk State College is nationally accredited, the curriculum should meet the requirements of other states; however, states may have requirements in addition to the program’s curriculum.  If you wish to obtain a license in a non-compact state, please contact the board of nursing in the state where a license is desired to determine whether this degree will meet their licensure requirements.

Contact information for each state’s Board of Nursing can be found at https://www.ncsbn.org/contact-bon.htm.

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