3 Best RN-to-MSN Programs in Minnesota – 2024

Written By: Editorial Staff @ NursingProcess.org

Are you an ADN-prepared registered nurse in Minnesota looking for a way to broaden your career opportunities and increase your salary? Consider enrolling in one of the North Star State’s RN-to-MSN programs. Graduates of RN-to-MSN programs in Minnesota average salaries of $124,240 a year, and the education they receive prepares them for a wide range of advanced practice nursing roles. Whether you envision yourself as an ace clinical specialist, a dynamic nurse executive, or an inspirational nurse educator, RN-to-MSN programs will impart the knowledge you need to succeed in Minnesota’s competitive healthcare sector. This list of the 3 best RN-to-MSN programs in Minnesota for 2024 is an excellent place to get started.


(Based on our ranking methodology, the following are the 3 Best RN-to-MSN Programs in Minnesota (Online & Campus).)

1. Winona State University-Rochester - Rochester

Specialties Offered: Nurse Educator and Nursing & Organizational Leadership

Program Details: Winona State University-Rochester offers one of the best RN-to-MSN programs in Minnesota for registered nurses who want to earn both a BSN and MSN in less time. Winona State’s program prepares nurses for careers in nursing education, and nursing leadership. Committed to excellence in education, student success, and engaged learning, the program confers, both, a BSN & an MSN, and prepares you for certification in nursing education or nursing leadership.

The RN to MSN program starts with ten undergraduate credits, including courses in organizational & systems leadership, healthcare policy, and health promotion. After completing the undergraduate courses, you will enter the graduate-level coursework. If you enter the nurse educator specialization, you must complete 48 credits, whereas the nursing leadership track comprises 43 credits. Both the RN-to-MSN tracks also include 300 to 420 hours of clinical practice.

Admission Requirements: To apply for Winona State University-Rochester RN-to-MSN program, you must have a two-year nursing degree with a GPA of 3.0. This RN-to-MSN program in Minnesota also requires applicants to have at least one year of clinical nursing experience. To qualify, you must also have an active and unencumbered RN license.

Must-Know Highlights For Potential Winona State University-Rochester RN-to-MSN Students

• Winona State University-Rochester RN-to-MSN students can take online classes from anywhere and at any time.
• Winona State University-Rochester RN-to-MSN students gain ample clinical training at the school’s state-of-art simulation lab.
• Winona State University-Rochester RN-to-MSN graduates report an excellent employment rate.
• Winona State University-Rochester RN-to-MSN students have a variety of scholarship options to which students can apply.

2. Capella University - Minneapolis

Specialties Offered: Care Coordination, Nursing Education, Nursing Informatics, and Nursing Leadership & Administration

Program Details: Capella University’s RN to MSN program can be the perfect stepping stone to a rewarding career either in care coordination, nursing education, nursing informatics, or nursing leadership. Counted among the well-known RN-to-MSN programs in Minnesota, Capella’s RN-to-MSN enhances your nursing knowledge and makes you an expert in your chosen area of focus.

All the RN to MSN tracks at Capella start with three bridge courses followed by MSN core and specialization courses. The program also includes a practicum course. The total credits required for graduation will be around 66. However, students may be able to transfer up to 12 credits from their undergraduate nursing education.

The 12-credit bridge courses cover topics such as health assessment & promotion, nursing research, and leadership for nursing practice. Thereafter, some of the core MSN courses you take include healthcare law & policy, healthcare economics, evidence-based practice, and quality improvement. After completing the MSN core courses, students must complete courses in their chosen specialization.

Admission Requirements: Applicants to Capella’s RN to MSN must have an ADN with a minimum GPA of 2.8. Further, this RN-to-MSN program in Minnesota requires the submission of transcripts, a resume, and a copy of your active and unencumbered RN license.

Must-Know Highlights For Potential Capella University RN-to-MSN Students

• Capella University partners with more than 600 healthcare organizations to provide employee discounts. Students who work at these partner healthcare employers can avail of tuition discounts.
• Capella University RN-to-MSN students have two paths to complete their education. Students can choose the flex path where they can complete assessments at their own pace, or instead opt for the guided path which requires keeping up with deadlines. Aside from this, the online format, further adds to the convenience of RN to MSN students who are mostly working nurses.
• Capella University’s RN-to-MSN program is developed in consultation with industry experts who fine-tune the curriculum to meet the changing needs of the healthcare industry.

3. Walden University - Minneapolis

Specialties Offered: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Executive, Nursing Education, Nursing Informatics, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PNP) Primary Care, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Public Health Nursing

Program Details: If you are a registered nurse in Minnesota who is dreaming of a rewarding advanced career in nursing, then enrolling in Walden University’s RN to MSN program is an excellent idea. Walden offers another of our featured RN-to-MSN programs in Minnesota, providing students with a variety of specialization options. Whether you are inclined towards direct patient care or prefer non-bedside roles, here you’ll find an RN to MSN specialization that is right for you.

This RN-to-MSN program in Minnesota offers direct patient care tracks in adult gerontology, family health, pediatrics, and psychiatric mental health. Alternatively, you can choose an indirect patient care emphasis from options including, nursing executive, nursing education, nursing informatics, or public health nursing.

Walden’s RN-to-MSN program, regardless of the specialization, starts with foundation courses, followed by core and specialization courses. Graduation requires the completion of 79 to 84 quarter credits. While the specialization courses vary, the foundational and core courses are the same, covering topics such as the issues & trends in nursing, foundations of nursing research, nursing leadership, population health, health care informatics, evidence-based knowledge, and interprofessional organizations & systems leadership.

Admission Requirements: Walden University’s RN to MSN program is open to registered nurses who have either a nursing diploma or an associate degree in nursing. Also, to apply applicants must submit their official transcripts.

Must-Know Highlights For Potential Walden University RN-to-MSN Students

• Walden University RN-to-MSN students have the advantage of having a dedicated placement partner who helps secure a suitable placement site for the clinical training.
• Walden University’s RN-to-MSN program allows students to choose their own pace and schedule of learning. The program offers a course-based learning schedule where students move along with others through the program and keep up with pre-set deadlines. Alternatively, if an independent pace of study is preferred, then the program offers a Tempo-Learning format where students can choose their own pace and study schedule.
• Walden University RN-to-MSN students refine their clinical skills by using tools such as the i-Human simulation software. This tool allows ample clinical practice, virtually, from anywhere.


RN to MSN Programs in Other States