Houston Texas Nursing Schools
Houston is one of the largest cities in Texas, making it an appealing place for new and experienced nurses alike. Depending on what your career goals are, there are several ways to start your career in this field. Houston is home to many nursing schools that offer LPN, RN, BSN, MSN and doctoral degrees. Many schools also have bridge programs for working nursing professionals. Browse nursing schools in Houston Texas to start finding the right program for you.
Greater than 184,562 registered nurses (RNs) work full-time or part-time in health care settings in Texas, with 63 percent employed by hospitals. Texas also allows an RN to have one multistate license in their primary state of residence, making it one of 24 nursing compact states.
Houston Nursing Schools
There are a number of nursing schools in Houston accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). There are several program options available as well, including the sampling below from Houston Texas Woman’s University.
- RN to BSN
- Master of Science
- Nurse Practitioner
- Nursing Education
- Nursing Health Systems Management
- Post MS Certificate RN
- Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
- Doctoral Program in Nursing Science (PhD)
- International Health Professions Nurse Mentor Programs
The University of Texas Arlington, the University of Houston-Victoria, Sam Houston State University and several online courses are other options for students looking for nursing classes in the area. Houston Community College is one of the many colleges that offers programs for Licensed Practical Nurses as well, which is a fast and relatively inexpensive way to enter the profession of nursing.
With over 180,000 RNs currently employed in the state of Texas, now is a great time to become a nurse, as that number is expected to rise to 245,870 RNs by 2020. Currently, the fastest growing jobs in Houston for individuals with their master or doctorate degrees are for nursing instructors and teachers, nurse practitioners, nurse midwives and nurse anesthetists (O*net, 2013).
The RN with an associate or bachelor’s degree may find a position in many local hospitals and at specialty hospitals in the Houston area. Physician’s offices and outpatient centers also have openings, and they tend to pay higher salaries. Nursing homes are another place for RNs and LPNs to find employment.
Life and Career Options in Houston
Houston, Texas has something to offer nearly everyone. Houston has great weather and no state income tax, making it an enticing destination for many wage earners. Houston also has a variety of cultural activities to engage in, including ballet, opera, theater, an aquarium, a zoo, a variety of museums and numerous trails for hiking and cycling. In addition, the beaches are just 60 miles away, allowing for quick and enjoyable getaways.
The Metropolitan Transit Authority in Houston offers an extensive MetroRail, bus services, HOV and HOT lanes to ease transportation problems. This allows for ease of travel to school, work, and recreational events. We have taken the time to outline some of the many nursing schools and hospitals in the Houston metro, so you can have a glance at what is offered throughout many locations in the city.
When considering where to work as a nurse in Houston, many new graduates immediately look to acute care hospitals for openings. But, how do you decide which hospital you’d like to apply at? The American Nurses Credentialing Center awards Magnet certification, denoting excellence in professional nursing practice, to facilities that meet specified criteria. The Magnet Designation attracts and retains the best nurses, and has been noted to improve patient care, safety and satisfaction scores.
Houston has several Magnet hospitals that may be a good place to search for open nursing positions. These include:
- Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital
- Houston Methodist at the Texas Medical Center
- Memorial Hermann the Woodlake’s Hospital
- Michael E. Debakey VA Medical Center
- St. Lukes Medical Center
- Texas Children’s Hospital
In 2010 Texas had 738,400 Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses with that number expected to grow by 25 percent, much faster than average. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average income for an LPN in the U.S. is $44,840 annually, and LPNs in the Houston area enjoy an annual mean wage of slightly higher, coming in at $51,490.
In fact, in all nursing areas, including Advanced Practice Registered Nursing (APRN) professions, nurses who work in the Houston Metropolitan area consistently earn a higher mean wage that the national salary average. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics figures, the 2016 the mean average income for nurse anesthetists practicing in the United States was $164,030, with CRNAs in Houston making $157,280 annually. The average annual income for nurse practitioners is $44,840 nationwide, yet is $127,390 annually for Houston based Nurse Practitioners. Similarly, Certified Nurse Midwives earn an annual salary of $102,390 nationally while CNMs in the Houston metro earn $90,990.
Curriculum, Tuition and Financial Aid
The curriculum for a BSN degree is very similar at most nursing schools in Houston and nurse schooling in Texas. In the first two years, basic courses are required with the focus on sciences.
During the third and fourth year the following nursing courses are required:
- Health Assessment
- Nursing Fundamentals
- Pathophysiology and Pharmacology
- Introduction to Clinical Practice
- Adult Health I and II
- Psychiatric/Mental Health Nursing
- Promoting Wellness and Managing Health Issues for Older Adults
- Nursing Research
- Women’s Health and Maternal Newborn Nursing
- Nursing Care of Infants, Children and Adolescents
- Community Nursing
- Nursing Leadership and Transition to Practice
- Concepts in Nursing Practice
According to each school’s website (2014), tuition varies between private and state universities, with public schools tending to be less expensive. Sam Houston State University’s tuition and fees for up to 13 credit hours is $3773, plus there is the cost of books. The Houston University Victoria’s tuition for 22 credit hours for undergraduates is $3596.78.
If a student is in need of financial assistance, once they are accepted in a nursing school they should complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as they may qualify for local, state or federal assistance.
There are many scholarship programs available. For example, there is a scholarship designed for children of Texan veterans. In addition, Texas Women’s University has received a $3 million federal HRSA grant for nursing scholarships. These funds will be used to help the more economically disadvantaged undergraduate and graduate students pursue a nursing degree. In addition, nurses working in hospitals can often get tuition reimbursement from their employer.
For more information on these and other topics, visit our nursing tools and resources center.