9 Best RN to BSN Programs in New York (Online & Campus) – 2024 Rankings

Written By: Editorial Staff @ NursingProcess.org

If you are already working as an RN in the state of New York after having completed an ADN or diploma program, you can certainly benefit from furthering your education and obtaining your BSN degree through one of several RN to BSN programs in this state. First and foremost, the additional training will help you move forward in your career through new skills. What’s more, employers will find you to be a more valuable asset since your education will help to promote better patient outcomes. As a result, you can expect a handsome salary increase which can vary depending on the field of your choice. We have looked at 37 different RN to BSN programs in New York and compared things like NCLEX-RN pass rates, cost, graduation rates, and more to compile the following list of the top 9.

Online RN to BSN Programs in New York: What You Need to Know?

In many states, including New York, there is a nursing shortage crisis. This means that there are simply not enough well-educated nurses to fill all of the available positions, which can have a tremendous impact on patient care. In order to facilitate further education, you can now find numerous online RN to BSN degrees in the state of NY. The online courses promote flexibility and allow you to learn at your own pace, even as you continue to work. You may still need to visit a school’s campus for access to clinicals, labs, and testing, however.

ACEN/CCNE Accredited & Approved by New York State Board for Nursing: One of the most important facets of picking a quality RN to BSN program in this state is choosing a program that is approved by the New York State Board for Nursing and accredited by either the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). These two bodies set standards in educational excellence among nursing programs, and the New York State Board of Nursing only approves programs that are accredited by one of these two organizations.

Coursework: Coursework in an online RN to BSN program in the “Empire State” will vary somewhat from school to school, but it covers much of the same ground. You will take courses in things like pharmacology, epidemiology, and pathophysiology as well as in nursing management and leadership. You may also take general education and pre-nursing courses early on in your education to help prepare you for the more rigorous coursework to come.

Sample Courses
Clinical Epidemiology, Fundamentals of Pharmacology, Health Assessment, Novice to Expert, Nursing
Management Practicum, Pathophysiology, Population Health Nursing, Professional Role Development in Nursing,
Research in Nursing, and Transitions Into Professional Practice

Clinical Training: If you have been working for some time as an RN in the state of New York, you will likely not need to participate in any extra clinical training. Much of what you will need to graduate the BSN program can be completed through your current employer. If you must participate in clinicals, you may be able to receive some credit for participation online, but you may also need to travel to a participating facility for hands-on training.

Program Length: One of the best parts about online RN to BSN programs throughout the state of New York is the flexibility they provide in terms of program lengths. You may be able to enroll full-time and complete a program in as little as one year, or you may be able to enroll only part time and take up to three years (or longer) to finish your degree. If you choose to attend a campus-based RN to BSN course in the state, these take roughly two years.

Common Admission Requirements: Different schools have different admission requirements, but all across New York, you will need to be a currently-licensed RN with a diploma or ADN degree to be admitted into an RN to BSN degree. Otherwise, requirements may vary. For example, at Stony Brook University, which offers one of the most sought-after online RN to BSN programs in NY, you will need to:

• Have a minimum GPA of 2.5 or higher, with even higher GPAs having a better chance at acceptance;
• Show proof of completion of 57 college credits with a grade C or better in prerequisite courses such as English Composition, Psychology, Sociology, and others;
• Pay the application fee or provide an approved waiver;
• Provide three professional letters of recommendation;
• Provide proof of Certification in Basic Life Support for Health Care Providers w/AED; and
• Provide evidence of malpractice insurance for students and health insurance.

What are the 9 Best Accredited RN to BSN Programs in New York for 2024?

(Based on our ranking methodology, the following are the 9 best RN-to-BSN programs in New York (Online & Campus).)

1) Stony Brook University, Stony Brook

Type: Online

Program Overview: The online RN to BSN program at Stony Brook University is one of the best programs in the state. Curriculum and teaching models are designed around the evolution of healthcare around the world and focus heavily on management, leadership, and communication. You can enter the program in both spring and summer, and if you do not currently have an RN license, you will have the first 11 weeks after the program starts to obtain it.

Key Highlights

• Stony Brook University does have a foreign language admission requirement, which means only students who have previously taken and passed foreign language classes will be admitted. However, if you pass the foreign language section of the placement test, you will have fulfilled this requirement.
• You will also need to submit a clinical practice portfolio that will be evaluated for the provision of 28 advanced placement credits. Failing to provide it or providing one that does not meet the standards set forth by Stony Brook University, will result in being dismissed from the program.
• You can attend information sessions to learn more about the RN to BSN course on offer here.

2) University at Buffalo-SUNY, Buffalo

Type: Online

Program Overview: The University at Buffalo School of Nursing provides another excellent RN to BSN course that takes place completely online. Tuition is quite affordable, especially for residents of New York State, and scholarships are available. Working RNs enjoy receiving their baccalaureate education at University of Buffalo-SUNY due to the program’s flexibility. Additionally, the Early Assurance Option for new RN graduates allows you to apply and complete your licensure and employment requirements before your second semester of coursework begins.

Key Highlights

• This RN to BSN course is ranked among the best online programs in the country by US News & World Report.
• You can choose between part-time and full-time options, which allows you to learn at your own pace and enhances your chances of success.
• With full-time enrollment, you can complete this program in as little as one year.

3) Saint John Fisher College, Rochester

Type: Online

Program Overview: The RN to BSN program at Saint John Fisher College takes place entirely online to provide working RNs across the state with the opportunity to obtain their degrees on their own time. It was specifically designed to work alongside diploma and ADN programs. Saint John Fisher College focuses on the student unlike many other online programs with access to round-the-clock online tutoring. Here, you must have an RN license and be registered in the state of New York before enrolling.

Key Highlights

• You can complete this program in anywhere from 12 to 18 months, allowing excellent flexibility and the opportunity to boost your salary and employment opportunities quickly.
• Those who want to continue their education even further may opt to participate in the RN to BSN to MS Fast-Track program which allows graduate courses at the same time as undergraduate courses.
• Curriculum is presented in two seven-week modules each semester, making it easy to digest and learn.
• Some experiential learning – including labs and clinicals – may take place on campus.

4) Hunter College of CUNY, New York

Type: Online

Program Overview: Hunter College of CUNY’s Hunter-Bellevue School of Nursing provides an affordable and easily accessible RN to BSN course for anyone who has an ADN degree and is currently licensed to work as an RN in NY. Students may choose to complete the program full-time or part-time to fit their schedules. The program starts during the fall semester, and students may have certain associate degree coursework evaluated to determine whether it fulfills any of the general education or pre-nursing requirements.

Key Highlights

• If you choose to pursue your BSN at Hunter College, you are exempt from the typical foreign language requirement.
• Though much of the program takes place online, students must complete NURS 480: Promotion of Wellness in the Community in person. This course requires hands-on clinicals in a community agency within NYC.
• Hunter College of CUNY holds information sessions in the summer just prior to the start of the fall semester.

5) Lehman College, Bronx

Type: Online

Program Overview: The RN to BSN degree offered by Lehman College was specifically designed to provide a simpler transition for ADN-educated registered nurses who are currently licensed in New York to earn their BSN degrees. The program aims to provide RNs with additional skills that will allow them to pursue positions in leadership and management, hone their critical thinking, and provide better overall patient outcomes in a variety of diverse patient groups. The staff and faculty at Lehman University provide all students – online and on-campus – with the same level of support and the very same education.

Key Highlights

• Aside from CCNE accreditation for its RN-BSN online program, Lehman College is also accredited by the Middle States Commission for Higher Education.
• The school is proud to provide one of the most affordable nursing programs in the entire country.
• You can choose between full-time and part-time enrollment and learn at your leisure as long as you complete the entire program within five years.

6) Molloy College, Rockville Centre

Type: Campus

Program Overview: The Barbara H. Hagan School of Nursing at Molloy College offers one of the best on-campus RN to BSN courses in the state of New York. It has a 50-year tradition of providing some of the best education in the state, and with a focus on humanistic nursing practice, which centers around providing healthcare with dignity and respect, it has produced some of the most successful RNs in the country today. The RN to BSN program offers advanced placement through transfer credits or testing.

Key Highlights

• Molloy College boasts an 8:1 ratio of students to faculty and instructors.
• You may begin the program prior to receiving NY state licensure, but this must be obtained before beginning your clinical courses.
• A few courses in the program, including Nursing Research, Health Assessment in the Community, and others offer hybrid components, which means students can take parts of these courses online.

7) Adelphi University, Garden City

Type: Hybrid

Program Overview: Adelphi University in Garden City, New York provides a hybrid learning experience that combines online learning with on-campus learning. The school strives to be as flexible as possible while providing RNs striving to obtain their BSN degrees with the best possible education. Admittance is stringent since students must have at least a 3.0 GPA for consideration, and while students are encouraged to have RN licensure in New York, the school will consider those who have graduated accredited programs and who have licensure endorsements for entry.

Key Highlights

• Adelphi University’s College of Nursing and Public Health was recognized by the National League for Nursing (NLN) as a highly prestigious Center for Excellence between 2014 and 2018.
• Students will also have access to a newly-constructed Nexus Building and Welcome Center, which offers high-tech simulation labs and more.
• Schedules vary from student to student, but most complete the program in 18 months or less.

8) College of Staten Island CUNY, Staten Island

Type: Campus

Program Overview: The RN to BSN course at the College of Staten Island CUNY is open to licensed RNs who currently have diplomas or ADN degrees. It allows one of the few on-campus opportunities for working RNs to study full-time or part-time as they pursue their bachelor’s degrees. The program focuses on independent roles within the nursing profession, including leadership and management, and it also provides the foundation for further education in nursing research. Only RNs who had a 2.5 GPA during their associate degree studies are considered for acceptance.

Key Highlights

• The College of Staten Island, in an effort to provide even more flexibility, has begun offering a hybrid RN to BSN degree. Certain coursework, including but not limited to Seminar in Professional Development, Interpersonal Dynamics in Learning, and Introduction to Research in Nursing have been or will soon be developed for online learning.
• The school starts new terms each in both the spring and fall, providing numerous opportunities for working RNs.

9) Utica College, Utica

Type: Online

Program Overview: Utica College recognizes that the BSN degree has become the gold standard among employers and healthcare providers not only in New York, but across the country. The RN to BSN course offered here is designed to make it affordable and easy for currently licensed RNs to earn their BSN degrees if they have already earned ADN degrees or diplomas. The program at Utica College is focused primarily on offering outstanding healthcare and improving patient outcomes, but at the same time, it puts a focus on RNs’ personal growth and professional success.

Key Highlights

• Utica College’s 100% online program requires no residencies or clinicals, making it one of the most flexible RN to BSN opportunities in the state.
• The program was designed to be completed in three years or less, on students’ own time, depending on their workload, course list, and more.
• Recent ADN graduates may apply and enter the program, but they must obtain licensure within the first six months of starting.



Latest on New York’s Push for 80 Percent BSN

To improve healthcare and patient outcomes at the national level, the Institute of Medicine has called for every state in the country to have at least 80% of its RNs educated at the BSN level. Both the American Association of Colleges of Nursing and the National Advisory Council on Nurse Education and Practice agree that the BSN degree should be the new minimum educational requirement for registered nurses nationwide. Though this has been quite the endeavor, many states have created programs and laws designed to make it happen.

In 2017, New York legislators made history by becoming the first state in the US to mandate BSNs for registered nurses in the state. The law says that all new RNs must have BSN degrees within 10 years of their initial licensure; without it, they cannot renew their nursing licenses. As a result, numerous schools all across the state have taken the initiative to make it easier for working RNs who may be pressed for time and money to earn their BSN degrees with a great deal of flexibility.

Options to Fund Your RN to BSN in New York

Grants: Many of the RNs in New York who choose to further their education through RN to BSN courses may qualify for grants. Federal grants, such as the Pell Grant, are available to students who show financial need and display academic prowess. For access to these, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA. Other grants provided by the State of New York are available through the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation.

Loans: Loans are available through the US Federal Government to help cover the cost of RN to BSN programs in "The Empire State". You can apply for these through Sallie Mae, but it’s important to first explore all other options, including grants and scholarships, to minimize the amount you need to borrow. You may also be able to borrow student loans from private banks and financiers at lower interest rates.

Scholarships: Numerous scholarships exist for RNs who wish to further their education via RN to BSN programs. Some of these, including the Edna A. Lauterbach Scholarship Fund and the Fastweb Scholarship Search, can be accessed via the NYSED website’s Office of the Professions.

Employer Assistance Programs: Depending on your employer, you may also be able to utilize employer assistance programs to help pay for your BSN education. Many of today’s employers are under pressure to reach the 80% by 2020 mandate set forth by the IOM, which means they are willing to help you cover costs in exchange for agreeing to work for them for a set period of time. In many cases, this requires spending a minimum of two years working in underserved areas in New York.

6 Potential Advantages of Pursuing an RN to BSN in New York

Aside from better preparing yourself for a lifelong career as an RN, there are other advantages associated with pursuing this particular course of study.

1. Expand Your Knowledge, Skills & Abilities: Starting over from scratch can be difficult, especially if you’ve already been working as an RN and you’ve gained a great deal in terms of skills and abilities. RN to BSN degrees in NY are designed to give you credit for what you already know and allow you to work at your own pace. Upon completion, you will have gained new skills and abilities that will undoubtedly serve you well throughout the rest of your career, and you will become more valuable to your existing or potential employers, too.

2. Salary Bump: One of the biggest benefits associated with completing an RN to BSN course in New York is the substantial increase in your salary. An RN with a diploma or ADN degree earns an average of $89,240 a year statewide, but after earning a BSN, that salary jumps to an average of $102,410 – an increase of more than $13,170 annually. You can expect an even larger salary increase if you work in particularly heavily populated areas like New York City, and this increase will only continue to grow with time and experience gained.

New York
Before RN To BSN After RN to BSN How Much More Will I Earn
$89,240 $102,410 +$13,170
(Source: Compiled using data from U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

3. More Job Opportunities: As both federal and state governments push for more BSN-educated RNs, it comes as no surprise that RNs who have this degree have more job openings available to them in NY. In fact, as of right now, there are only 4,240 job openings available for ADN graduates each year as opposed to 7,630 job openings for BSN graduates. This is an accurate reflection of the demand for better-educated RNs who have completed rigorous training in management and leadership

New York Annual Job Openings (New + Replacement)
Annual Openings for BSN Graduates 7,630
Annual Openings for ADN Graduates
(Source: Compiled using data from careeronestop.org)

4. The Outlook is Brighter for a BSN Graduate: As time goes on, the outlook for RNs who have pursued BSN degrees continues to get better. In New York, an RN with an ADN degree will see an average of 15.00% growth between 2020 and 2030. Conversely, an RN with a BSN degree will see 18.07% growth and the addition of 18,670 new positions across the state. Again, this has to do with the fact that employers see the value in hiring BSN-educated RNs to help improve patient outcomes.

10 Year (2020-2030) Job Outlook
Employment New Job Growth
2020 2030 Number %
BSN 103,310121,98018,67018.07%
ADN 58,95067,7908,84015.00%
(Source: Compiled using data from careeronestop.org)

5. Career Advancement: If you have dreamed of advancing your career behind the title of registered nurse, then a BSN degree is a great start. With it, you can advance into a variety of positions thanks to your leadership and management training. These include Director of Nursing, Nurse Educator, and Nurse Supervisor, among others – all of which are in high demand across New York State.

Advancement Opportunities
Charge Nurse Director of Nursing
Chief Nursing Officer Nurse Educator
Clinical Nurse Specialist Nurse Manager
Clinical Research Nurse Nurse Supervisor

6. Post-RN to BSN Study Options: There are other things you can do in your career once you’ve earned your BSN degree in New York, as well. Many New York schools offer RN to BSN to MSN programs, allowing you to take both graduate and undergraduate courses at the same time and fast-track your way to a master’s degree. With this, or by following the traditional MSN path, you could become a clinical leader, certified nurse midwife, or even a nurse practitioner and earn anywhere from $93,470 to $162,610. Furthermore, if you go on to pursue your doctorate, you could become an educator or dean in a prestigious university, a health system executive, or an advanced practice registered nurse and earn anywhere from $93,470 to $189,860 – quite the increase in salary.

Type of Degree Length Roles and Responsibilities Salary
Master’s Degree (MSN/MS)Up to 2 yearsAdministrator, Certified Nurse Midwife, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, Clinical Leader, Clinical Nurse Specialist & Nurse Practitioner$93,470 - $162,610
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) or Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Degree4 to 6 yearsAdvanced Practice Registered Nurse, College Faculty, Nursing School Dean, Health System Executive, Researcher, & Senior Policy Analyst$93,470 - $189,860

RN to BSN Programs in Nearby States
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