The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

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Updated February 17, 2023

RNs and NPs in New York earn some of the highest salaries in the country. Review the state's top RN-to-MSN programs to see if earning an advanced degree in New York is right for you.
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According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), nurses in New York earn some of the highest salaries in the country. Registered nurses (RNs) make an average of $93,320, while nurse practitioners (NPs) earn $133,940.

Earning a master of science in nursing (MSN) in the state can be a financially beneficial decision. Keep reading to learn about some of the top nursing master's programs in New York.

We use a data-driven methodology to rank the best RN-to-MSN programs in New York, making it easier for you to find a program that works for you. Our methodology is based on metrics that we believe matter most to students, including academic quality, affordability, reputation, and program offerings.

Learn more about the key factors to consider when choosing a program, or go straight to our full ranking of the best New York RN-to-MSN programs.

Featured Online RN-to-MSN Programs

How Do New York RN-to-MSN Programs Work?

RNs in New York with an associate degree in nursing (ADN) and clinical experience can apply for an RN-to-MSN program. This accelerated bridge program provides a path for RNs to earn their bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and master of science in nursing (MSN) simultaneously in as little as two years.

The fast-paced RN-to-MSN curriculum suits students who want to earn their BSN and MSN as quickly as possible. To help provide some flexibility, many programs in New York allow students to enroll on a full- or part-time basis while offering on-campus, online, or hybrid learning formats.

Applying to a New York RN-to-MSN Program

Before applying to an RN-to-MSN program in New York, make sure you meet the requirements necessary for acceptance. Check that the program offers your chosen specialization and is offered in the format that works best for your learning style.

While specific prerequisites may vary, many programs accept applicants who meet the following general requirements.

  • Admission Materials

    ADN from an accredited program, active and unencumbered New York RN license, transcripts, personal statement, letters of recommendation, one year of clinical experience as an RN
  • GPA Requirement

    3.0 or higher

Why Is New York RN-to-MSN Program Accreditation Important?

Attending an accredited program provides benefits for both prospective nurses and their future employers and patients:

  • Accreditation proves the program meets quality standards, demonstrating that the school successfully prepares nurses.
  • The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing only provide accreditation to programs that appropriately prepare students for their role as nurses.
  • Doctoral programs expect applicants to hold a degree from an accredited institution.
  • Students in unaccredited programs may not be eligible for federal financial aid.
  • Accredited programs may not accept transfer credits from an unaccredited program.
  • Employers prefer to hire graduates with a degree from an accredited program.

Learn More About the Best New York RN-to-MSN Programs and Schools

See our methodology to learn more about how we create our rankings.

#1 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

University of Rochester

  • Rochester, NY
  • 4 years
  • Campus

University of Rochester appeals to learners with a bachelor's in nursing who want to earn an affordable master's degree. The school's on-campus RN-to-BS-to-MS program emphasizes high-level academics and practical experience. Many financial assistance offerings are available to help make the degree even more affordable.

The degree costs New York students $51,705 annually. About 81% of degree-seekers at the school use financial aid such as scholarships and grants. School information shows that about 44% of enrollees take out loans to help fund their program.

A master’s degree can open doors to more advanced careers than a bachelor’s alone. Graduates leave the program with a credential that can lead to managerial and leadership jobs. Another option is a Ph.D. or other terminal degree.

Average Tuition
In-state
$55,040
Out-of-state
$55,040
Retention Rate
94%
Admission Rate
30%
Students Enrolled
12,233
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
7% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#2 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

New York University

  • New York, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

New York University is a private college recognized for its graduate degrees. Learners interested in pursuing a master’s can choose from 201 programs. Faculty teach a rigorous and accredited curriculum that ensures enrollees receive advanced career preparation.

The master's in nursing, among the top-ranked degrees available on campus, may especially appeal to students interested in the nursing field. Coursework offers the advanced training that enrollees need to prepare for roles in management and research. Degree-seekers can access numerous campus resources for graduate students, including careers services to help them find a job.

Enrollees pay an annual tuition of $33,408. Degree-seekers can receive monetary awards to help foot their tuition bill. The school awards loans, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid to 52% of learners. The college reports an overall 85% degree-completion rate.

Average Tuition
In-state
$50,684
Out-of-state
$50,684
Retention Rate
94%
Admission Rate
16%
Students Enrolled
52,885
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
10% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#3 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

Le Moyne College

  • Syracuse, NY
  • 4 years
  • Campus

Graduates with a bachelor's degree in nursing may want to explore the master of science in nursing from Le Moyne College. The Syracuse-based school offers a master's in nursing that ranks highly for academic and career preparation. Financial aid helps make this degree accessible to those without the means to pay out of pocket.

Tuition for New York students costs $16,524 per year. An average of 100% of degree-seekers reduce tuition by using scholarships and other financial aid. Financial packages also include loans, received by 59% of enrollees.

A master’s degree builds on bachelor’s-level knowledge, producing highly skilled nursing professionals. Master's graduates can also command higher wages as they pursue management and leadership positions. Degree-holders interested in high-level research positions and jobs in academia may choose to pursue a doctorate.

Average Tuition
In-state
$34,230
Out-of-state
$34,230
Retention Rate
87%
Admission Rate
74%
Students Enrolled
3,326
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
2% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#4 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

SUNY Polytechnic Institute

  • Utica, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

SUNY Polytechnic Institute attracts learners with a bachelor’s degree in nursing, preparing them for enhanced career opportunities. The graduate school is one of the best in the state and offers a catalog of 12 master's degrees in a variety of majors. The master's in nursing education offers enrollees a traditional graduate school experience that includes scholarship, professional development, and networking opportunities.

Degree candidates learn from qualified professors who can serve as mentors. The curriculum’s practical and theoretical instruction gives learners an advantage in the workplace. This education provides the preparation degree-seekers need to advance their  nursing careers and command higher wages.

Tuition costs around $11,310 per year for New York students and $23,100 for out-of-state enrollees. Contact the institution's financial aid department to see what financial aid the school offers to help make tuition more affordable. Learners study on a pleasing campus that offers amenities like a gym and state-of-the-art labs. Students can also access teaching and research spaces.

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,070
Out-of-state
$16,980
Retention Rate
74%
Admission Rate
69%
Students Enrolled
3,006
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
45% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#5 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

Upstate Medical University

  • Syracuse, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Upstate Medical University enrolls learners with a bachelor's degree in nursing, offering them an affordable education. The Syracuse-based college offers a master of science in nursing that prepares students for high-level jobs in their field. Financial aid helps make this degree more affordable for those who need assistance funding their education.

New York students pay about $11,310 per year in graduate tuition. About 48% of the school's enrollees use loans.

A master’s degree builds on bachelor’s-level knowledge, producing more advanced professionals in the nursing field. Graduates often pursue jobs in management, research, and other high-level positions. Master's degree-holders can also move on to a Ph.D.

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,070
Out-of-state
$16,980
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,588
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
23% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#6 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

Pace University

  • New York, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Nursing bachelor's degree-holders interested in enhancing their education may find Pace University worth a second glance. The school offers 48 master's degrees, many of them top-ranked. The master's in nursing - family nurse practitioner program offers students a traditional graduate school experience marked by scholarship and extracurricular opportunities.

Enrollees learn from qualified faculty with abundant experience in this field. The curriculum covers high-level concepts that give learners deep insight into the field and professional best practices. Graduates leave the program more competitive in the marketplace because of their advanced training.

Annual tuition costs around $31,320. Financial aid opportunities like scholarships, grants, and loans can help learners reduce their tuition bill. Degree-seekers receive additional assistance through tutoring, career services, and access to professional development.

Average Tuition
In-state
$44,714
Out-of-state
$44,714
Retention Rate
78%
Admission Rate
79%
Students Enrolled
13,395
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#7 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University

  • Brooklyn, NY
  • 4 years
  • Campus

SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University is a Brooklyn-based public college that offers 22 master's degrees. The institution gives bachelor’s degree-holders ample opportunity for upward mobility in various fields. These programs provide instruction from qualified faculty, all of whom dedicate their careers to student success.

Nursing students interested in advancing their careers should consider applying for a master's in nursing. Coursework builds on the undergraduate experience to prepare enrollees for managerial and leadership roles. Learners take courses covering a variety of topics in the field.

In-state tuition costs $11,310 annually, while out-of-state tuition costs $23,100.

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,070
Out-of-state
$16,980
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,899
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
13% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#8 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

D'Youville College

  • Buffalo, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Buffalo-based D'Youville College is a private institution with a robust graduate program. The school enrolls learners in 21 master's programs, giving bachelor’s degree-holders the opportunity to enhance their education and skills in various fields. Students receive a rigorous and accredited education from topnotch faculty.

The school’s master's in nursing management and quality leadership attracts enrollees interested in advancing their nursing career. Graduates leave the program with marketable skills that employers value, even during economic downturns. Learners complete required courses and can sometimes choose electives.

Learners pay $17,892 annually in tuition. About 100% of the school’s enrollees use loans, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid to fund their education. Once enrolled, 63% of the school's degree-seekers complete their programs.

Average Tuition
In-state
$27,040
Out-of-state
$27,040
Retention Rate
81%
Admission Rate
88%
Students Enrolled
3,048
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#9 The Best RN-to-MSN Programs in New York

Long Island University

  • Brookville, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

A private college, Long Island University is recognized for top-ranked graduate programs available on the college’s Brookville campus. Degree-seekers can choose from 122 master's programs covering a variety of fields. Students get a rigorous education that holds accreditation and is considered among the nation's best.

Students interested in nursing may want to explore the school's master of science in family nurse practitioner program. Coursework prepares enrollees for roles in management and research. Master's graduates can also go on to pursue a doctorate. Degree-seekers take courses on campus, giving them access to a thorough graduate student experience that includes professional development opportunities.

The school charges $22,482 in tuition annually. Around 95% of students receive loans, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid to help pay for their degree. One of the reasons learners like this program is the 46% school graduation rate.

Average Tuition
In-state
$36,452
Out-of-state
$36,452
Retention Rate
76%
Admission Rate
80%
Students Enrolled
15,546
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
4% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Frequently Asked Questions About New York RN-to-MSN Programs

Is an MSN program difficult?

Nurses should expect an MSN program to be more difficult than their undergraduate studies, as the courses are more advanced and clinical hours can be time-consuming. Many nurses may also have to continue working to afford their graduate program, requiring them to balance professional, personal, and academic responsibilities.

Do RNs with an MSN make more money?

While earning an MSN may be difficult, graduates gain higher earning potential, as RNs with the advanced degree make more than their ADN and BSN counterparts. The BLS reports that RNs earn a median salary of $77,600 in the U.S., while master's-prepared NPs earn $123,780.

What do nurses with MSN do?

Nurses with an MSN can focus on one of the four advanced practice registered nurse specializations: nurse practitioner (NP), clinical nurse specialist, certified registered nurse anesthetist, or certified nurse midwife.

NPs can choose a specific population, including adult gerontology, pediatrics, neonatal, oncology, psychiatry, family, or women's health. They can also focus on indirect specializations, such as administration, education, informatics, or health systems management.

Does an MSN lead to an NP career?

Every NP has at least an MSN, but not every nurse with an MSN is an NP. After becoming a licensed RN, nurses can enroll in an MSN program or NP program specializing in a concentration of their choosing. Upon completion, both receive a master's degree, but only one can obtain licensure as an NP.


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