Top RN Schools in Sacramento

If you live in or near Sacramento and aspire to be a nurse, you can choose from many nursing programs in the area. Learn more about the top RN schools in Sacramento in this article.
Top RN Schools in Sacramento

To become a Registered Nurse (RN), you must complete a two- or four-year degree program, which prepares you to take the NCLEX-RN exam. In the Sacramento area, you can choose from a variety of RN schools and programs. Some are located directly in Sacramento, while others are located in outlying areas. Learn about the top RN schools in Sacramento below so you can take the first step on your journey toward becoming an RN in this north central Californian city.

Although some of these schools aren't within the Sacramento city limits, all are within easy driving distance. Whether you're just starting out in your career or need a program that can accommodate your existing work schedule, one of the top five Sacramento RN schools should do the trick:

1. California State University, Sacramento (CSUS)

Located on a 300-acre campus right in downtown Sacramento, CSUS's School of Nursing is a convenient and affordable option for anyone who is pursuing a career as an RN. Average yearly tuition for in-state students is around $7,500 for the 2023-2024 academic year. The School of Nursing offers a traditional BSN, or Bachelor of Science in Nursing, degree, which is a four-year program. The first two years consist of general education courses, and the latter two years consist of clinical nursing training. Students gain hands-on experience in a variety of clinical settings, including at local hospitals and nursing homes. Accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), the School of Nursing at CSUS also offers an RN-to-BSN program for working nurses and a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program for those who'd like to pursue advanced practice roles.

2. American River College (ARC)

With its location just eight miles from downtown Sacramento, American River College is a great choice for locals who'd like to pursue careers as Registered Nurses. In-state tuition here averages around $1,250 per year for the 2023-2024 academic year. ARC's RN Program prepares students for the NCLEX-RN. A two-year program that results in the awarding of an Associate Degree in Nursing, or ADN, it is spread out across four semesters. The college also offers an LVN-to-RN program.

3. Sierra College

The Rocklin, California, campus of Sierra College offers an Associate Degree in Nursing program that's designed to help students successfully pass the NCLEX-RN the first time. Average annual tuition for in-state students is around $1,300 per year for the 2023-2024 academic year. Conveniently, the college also offers an RN-to-BSN merger track in conjunction with California State University at Sacramento that allows students to pursue their Bachelor of Science in Nursing degrees concurrently. An LVN-to-RN program is also available.

4. Los Medanos College

Situated in Pittsburg, California, which is about 45 minutes from central Sacramento, LMC's Nursing Department has helped aspiring RNs kick-start their careers since 1974. Average annual tuition is around $1,400 per year for the 2023-2024 academic year. Applicants to the RN program are selected at random. Upon completion, you'll receive an Associate Degree in Nursing. In collaboration with CSU, the college also offers an ADN-to-BSN program.

5. Napa Valley College

If you're able to commute easily to Napa, California, the ADN program at Napa Valley College may be the optimal solution. Tuition averages around $1,300 per year for the 2023-2024 academic year. The four-semester program is accredited by the California Board of Registered Nursing (BRN). Upon receiving your degree, you will be eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

Whether you'd like to earn your associate degree to start working as quickly as possible or are interested in a BSN or beyond, the top RN schools in Sacramento have you covered.

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