Top 5 Georgia RN to MSN Programs

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Georgia is a beautiful southern state and it is home to a wide range of MSN programs. It is home to some of the country’s best universities, in particular when it comes to their nursing degree programs. One of the reasons for this is that there is such diversity in its population, which means there is also a huge need for nurses with specialized skillssalary and job outlook. Before looking at the five top MSN degree programs in Georgia, let’s take a look at the .

Best RN-to-MSN Programs in Georgia

Rank School Location
1 Albany State University Albany, GA
2 Armstrong Atlantic State University Savannah, GA
3 Brenau University Gainesville, GA
4 Clayton State University Morrow, GA
5 Columbus State University Columbus, GA

Salary and Job Outlook for MSN Degree Holders in Georgia

Some 65,390 RNs worked in Georgia in 2010, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The average MSN degree salary at that count was $61,670 per year or $29.65 per hour. The top 10% of RNs in Georgia earned $80,760 and above, while the bottom 10% earned $43,550 and below. This is less than the national average, but the cost of living in Georgia is also below national average, which means that nurses have the same spending power here as the national average.

Georgia’s Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta area is one of the nation’s biggest RN employers. More than half of all RNs in the state work in this area and the salary is slightly above the state’s average. However, the cost of living in the Atlanta area is also higher than the rest of the state, which balances this out.

Augusta pays the highest salary to its RNs, at a $65,340 average. The top 10% earn above $85,080 and the bottom half earn below $45,680. Interestingly, the cost of living in Augusta is much lower than in the rest of the state, which is why RN jobs in Augusta are highly sought after.

Georgia also has an above average unemployment rate. This means competition for all jobs is fierce. However, the demand for nurses is predicted to grow by about 22% until 2018, which means work is certainly out there. But employers are increasingly looking for highly qualified nurses, which is why getting an MSN degree is so vital.

Top MSN Degree Programs in Georgia

Georgia is home to a huge range of universities. Some of these offer world-renowned degree programs and graduates are highly sought after. Those who do complete an MSN at one of the Georgia universities have a far greater chance of earning more than the average and perhaps even ending up in the top 10% earners.

Let’s take a look at what we think are the 5 best programs in the state.

  1. Albany State University

    Albany, GA

    Albany State University was initially started as a university solely for African-Americans To this date, it attracts a huge number of people from that ethnicity and this has made it rank 4th best in the country for African-American education. It has received various nominations making it one of the better colleges for veterans, liberal arts and public schools. Additionally, it offers nationally recognized online nursing programs.

    • Campus: Albany, Georgia
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation: ACEN
    • Tuition: Varies depending on circumstances of study
    • Minimum time commitment: 36 to 44 hours
    • Degree requirements: BSN, RN, transcripts, letters of recommendation
    • Programs: MSN Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), MSN Clinical Nurse Educator (CNE)
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid

  2. Armstrong Atlantic State University

    Savannah, GA

    Armstrong Atlantic State is just outside of Savannah, one of the most beautiful parts of the state. It has been classified by Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education as a Master’s university, which places it in the top universities of our country. The commitment of the school is to meet the needs of nurses who are dedicated to their profession and education and there is a strong focus on those who want to continue on to earning their doctoral degree.

    • Campus: Savannah, Georgia
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation: CCNE
    • Tuition: Varies depending on chosen path and circumstances
    • Minimum time commitment: Varies depending on chosen program
    • Degree requirements: Statistics course, interview, RN, GRE, personal statement, 3 letters of recommendation, CPR
    • Programs: MSN Adult/Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AG-ACNP), MSN Adult/Gerontology Clinical Nurse Specialist (AG-CNS), MSN Adult/Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (AG-PCNP), MSN Nursing Administration
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid

  3. Brenau University

    Gainesville, GA

  4. Clayton State University

    Morrow, GA

    Clayton State is on one of the most beautiful campuses in the state. It is the school with one of the highest levels of diversity in the state. Every single student and every single faculty member has a laptop computer, allowing them to study and exchange knowledge wherever and whenever. It is a nationally recognized school not just for its diversity and technological innovation, but also for the quality of its programs.

    • Campus: Morrow, Georgia
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation: CCNE
    • Tuition: $567 per semester hour
    • Minimum time commitment: Varies depending on chosen program
    • Degree requirements: Transcripts, GRE, TOEFL if applicable, three letters of recommendation, personal statement, interview
    • Programs: MSN Nursing Education, MSN Nursing Leadership/Management
    • School Site: Tuition & Financial Aid

  5. Columbus State University

    Columbus, GA

    Columbus State is right next to the Chattahoochee River, the world’s longest whitewater rafting experience in an urban area. This means that those who study in this area can engage in a range of water sports and this is one of the reasons why the university is so popular, even on an international level. It is listed as one of the best universities in our country, particularly compared to other public schools and there is a particular emphasis on veterans, who receive truly outstanding service. Additionally, the pass rates for the nursing licensure exam are above 90%, which is one of the highest in the country. For the MSN programs, Columbus State has teamed up with Georgia Southwestern University, another university recognized for its excellent nursing programs and the university is going from strength to strength.

    • Campus: Columbus, Georgia
    • Type: Public
    • Accreditation: CCNE
    • Tuition: $963.50 per credit hour for in state students and $1,549.50 for out of state students
    • Minimum time commitment: Varies depending on chosen program
    • Degree requirements: BSN, GPA, GRE, 3 letters of recommendation
    • Programs: MSN Nursing Education, MSN Nursing Informatics, MSN Nursing Leadership
    • School Site: Tuition | Financial Aid