Whether you’re just starting your nursing career or you’re looking for better opportunities, you should include Maine in your list. A recent survey from a new WalletHub ranking suggested that it’s one of the best places to work as a nurse. It offers lots of job opportunities and the working conditions are just excellent.
Now, how do you become a registered nurse in Maine? Below is a handy guide to help you out.
Requirements: How To Become An RN In Maine
Similar to most states, there are three big steps you need to take to become a registered nurse in Maine. Below is a quick overview of each step.
Complete An Accredited Nursing Program
To become successful in your chosen field, you need to make sure that you have the right foundation. This means starting with the best nursing program in Maine.
However, before you enroll in one, make sure that it’s accredited. When a nursing program has successfully passed an accreditation process, it means that it has the same criteria and standards as all nursing programs. It also makes sure that the curriculum and quality of education you’ll get from it are excellent.
If a school or university isn’t accredited, you should consider it a big red flag. Additionally, getting yourself into an accredited nursing program gives you the opportunity to attend a graduate nursing program and receive federal financial aid.
In nursing, there are two main accreditation bodies you need to take note of. One is the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing and the other one is the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.
Pass The NCLEX
The National Council for Licensure Exam-RN or NCLEX-RN helps ensure that candidates are well-prepared before entering the nursing practice.
In Maine, applying for the exam and state licensure consist of two parts.
First, you have to apply for Maine Licensure. You’ll need to download the application form via the Maine State Board of Nursing Website. Before submitting it, you’ll be required to get a 2×2 passport-type photo with your signature and the date you’ve got the photo taken. You will also need to get your nursing program administrator to complete a section of the form and affix the seal of your school.
For the exam, you must register with Pearson Vue. Once you’ve been successfully cleared, you’ll receive your ATT or Authorization to Test. This will allow you to schedule your exam.
Get Your License
To obtain your license, you’ll have to submit the following documents:
- Official transcripts
- Recent passport-type photo with signature and date
- School certification
- Criminal background check
Applications are processed based on the order the state board received them. If you want to get an update on your application, you can check out its status online.
You can check out the full list of requirements here.
ADN Programs In Maine
There are no less than 10 nursing schools in the state that offers ADN programs. This gives students enough choices to pick the best one that can help them fulfill their career goals.
In picking, make sure that the program you choose is accredited. In the state, the regulating accreditation agency is the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
Another thing you need to consider is licensing. Your ADN program of choice should be following stringent criteria in order to create candidates that are qualified to be licensed.
Admission requirements vary. However, most institutions require the following:
- Official transcript showing a GPA Of 2.5 or higher
- Application fees
- Resume outlining work and volunteer experience
- Document showing proficient scores on their first time to take the TEAS test
LPN To BSN Programs In Maine
To be eligible for RN practice, licensed practical nurses can take the LPN to ADN route. It’s shorter since most students are able to complete it in just a few semesters.
In general, LPN to RN programs require the following:
- Currently licensed as LPN
- GPA of 2.5 to 3.0 or higher
- A graduate of an LPN program (board-approved)
- Proof of up-to-date immunizations
BSN Programs In Maine
BSN programs in Maine are usually 4 years long or about 120 credit hours. However, if you take it without any break, it’s possible for you to complete it in just 2.5 years.
Although BSN programs last long, graduating from them opens up more opportunities. A lot of employers prefer nurses with a BSN degree. Plus, it gives you the chance to take leadership roles in the future.
To qualify, you’ll need to:
- Submit your application before the deadline
- Submit official transcript
- Have competitive ACT and GPA scores
- Undergo background and drug screening
MSN Programs In Maine
If you are aiming for more opportunities and career growth, you should look into the different MSN programs in Maine. Graduating from them allows you to work as a nurse educator or even a nurse researcher.
The typical program length is about 1.5 to 2.5 years. That translates to 40 credit hours.
Although it may sound like it doesn’t involve tons of class time, you have to keep in mind that the clinical rotation can be extensive.
Admission requirements for MSN programs in Maine include:
- RN license
- Competitive GRE scores
- A BSN graduate from an accredited undergraduate program
- Proof of up-to-date immunization
- Professional letters of reference
Accelerated Nursing Programs In Maine
For those who want to upgrade or fast-track their BSN degree, there are options that’ll allow you to do that in just 15 months. Take note that accelerated nursing programs in Maine require full-time study and clinical hours.
Best Nursing Programs In Maine
|Husson University||✔||╳||╳||View School Profile|
|University of Maine at Fort Kent||✔||✔||✔||View School Profile|
|University of Southern Maine||✔||✔||✔||View School Profile|
|Saint Joseph's College of Maine||✔||✔||╳||View School Profile|
|Purdue University Global||✔||✔||✔||View School Profile|
|University of Maine at Orono||✔||╳||╳||View School Profile|
|University of New England||✔||╳||✔||View School Profile|
|Central Maine Community College||✔||╳||╳||View School Profile|
|Southern Maine Community College||✔||╳||╳||View School Profile|
|Maine College of Health Professionals||✔||✔||╳||View School Profile|
A Closer Look At The Best Nursing Programs In Maine
Choosing the best nursing program in the state is critical for the success of your career. Considering that, we made sure that we only have the best ones on our list by ranking different schools based on NCLEX pass rates, satisfaction level of both students and graduates, and program outcomes.
1. Husson University
Located in Bangor, this university combines experiential learning with traditional education. With partnership with Eastern Maine Medical Center, its nursing program produces highly skilled professionals.
Husson University’s simulation lab is one of the best in the state. It features a computer-controlled patient which is used to create scenarios that mimic real patient care.
Additionally, their mannequins can also breathe and talk. They also have pulses, and heart and lung sounds.
2. University Of Maine At Fort Kent
The University of Maine at Fort Kent is at a prime location. You can explore its great outdoors and excellent mountain view while studying.
UMFK offers three BSN options to applicants- the traditional BSN, accelerated BSN, and online RN-BSN programs.
To be eligible for the RN to BSN online degree program, you’ll need to have a current RN license. You’ll also be required to have a GPA of 2.5 and submit your official transcripts along with your completed online application. The tuition fee is about $300 per credit hour.
3. University Of Southern Maine
University of Southern Maine has three campuses- Lewiston, Gorham, and Portland. It’s considered one of the largest institutions of higher education in Maine.
Its traditional BSN program can be completed in the Portland or Lewiston campus. Meanwhile, its accelerated program is only being offered on its Portland campus.
Through USM’s School of Nursing, you’ll have enriching community-based clinical experiences. You may even be given the opportunity to join its international health care missions.
4. Saint Joseph’s College Of Maine
Saint Joseph’s College of Maine is located in Standish. Even though it’s a faith-based school, it doesn’t come short when it comes to producing well-rounded nurses.
It has a high NCLEX pass rate. In fact, in 2018, it was able to get 100%. In 2019, they were able to get 95%
Its nursing students are able to start hands-on clinical experience as soon as they reach their sophomore year. With close supervision and mentoring, SJCME is able to produce professional nurses who can provide the best care possible to individuals and communities in different environments.
5. Purdue University Global
PUG’s most popular option among its students is its ASN program. It’s a 10-week course that prepares them for a rewarding career in nursing.
In addition to that, Purdue University Global also offers BSN, MSN, and DNP programs. You can also earn postgraduate certificates there.
6. University Of Maine At Orono
University of Maine at Orono is considered one of the premier public research universities in Maine. Apart from the excellent curriculum, its students also get to enjoy being close to nature.
The University of Maine is also known for starting the state’s very first nursing program back in 1939. Ever since it was started, its traditional BSN program continues to produce highly skilled nurses.
7. University Of New England
Located in Biddeford, the University of England offers two choices to students who want to earn a BSN degree. There’s the traditional BSN and accelerated BSN programs.
It’s also considered one of the largest private schools in Maine. Even though it doesn’t grant in-state tuition, you can still receive financial aids. You can check out its nursing program to know more.
8. Central Maine Community College
Central Maine Community College doesn’t offer any 4-year degrees. However, it’s still a good school to look into if you want to jumpstart your nursing career with the right education.
Its ASN program is one of the best in Maine and it has gotten even better in the last couple of years.
The ASN program takes about two years to complete. Once you’re done with it, you’ll be able to head to RN licensure in Maine.
9. Southern Maine Community College
Southern Maine Community College is a small university with two main campuses located in Midcoast and Portland. Apart from those, it also has several campuses across the southern part of Maine.
SMCC offers an associate nursing program that qualifies students for the RN licensure. It takes more than four semesters to complete but by studying full-time, you can complete it in less than two years.
10. Maine College Of Health Professionals
Maine College of Health Professionals is a great school to get into if you want to secure healthcare positions in the future.
They take pride in their 100% job placement rate for all their recent graduates. Their NCLEX pass rate, on the other hand, is at 93%.
MCHP has four program plans. There’s the BSN, CNA, and LPN programs. They also offer an Associate of Applied Science in Nursing program.