10 Best Nursing Schools In Washington

Selecting the best nursing schools in Washington can be difficult. To make the process easier first look for a school that supports students toward licensure and beyond.  

By the year 2025, Washington may be looking at a nursing shortage of more than 7,000. Nurse burnout and high turnover are some of the culprits behind the high number of vacant nurse job postings in healthcare facilities across the state, and several pieces of legislation are currently before the state legislature that addresses the issue of unsafe nurse-to-patient ratios.

Rural areas are where the shortages are most likely to be felt. Indeed, in cities like Seattle and Olympia, there is likely to be a modest nursing surplus. Washington State currently has 164 designated Health Professional Shortage Areas. New graduates of the best nursing schools in Washington may be wise to get experience working with medically underserved populations even if their long-term career goals lie elsewhere.

So continue reading to know about the best nursing schools in Washington.


Nursing Schools In Washington

If you’re looking for a list of the best nursing schools in Washington, look no further. Click on a school to learn more about it and see the address to know how to get there.

Seattle University College of Nursing

Seattle University College of Nursing is one of the oldest nursing programs in Washington. As a nursing student at Seattle University’s College of Nursing, you’ll learn how to combine compassion with critical thinking. While it welcomes students from every religious background, Seattle University is a Jesuit institution of higher learning, and its educational offerings focus on service as well as the pursuit of intellectual excellence.

The College of Nursing occupies Garrand Hall, which is the building that first housed Seattle University when the school was founded back in 1891. The 19,000-square-foot Clinical Performance Lab is located in Swedish Cherry Hill Medical Center, a few blocks away from the main campus.

Here, nursing students get their chance to translate classroom lectures into clinical experiences as they practice starting IVs and respond to health-emergency scenarios using high-fidelity manikins in a simulated hospital environment.

Students continue their experiential learning through clinical rotations at clinical facilities and community agencies like Evergreen Health, Seattle Children’s Hospital, UW Medical Center, Neighborcare Health, and International Community Health Services. Nursing majors also have the opportunity to participate in global health missions in places like Belize and Nicaragua.

Seattle University College of Nursing is dedicated to preparing values-based, compassionate professionals who will serve the healthcare needs of the community, especially the frail, vulnerable, and underserved. This is one of the best nursing schools in Washington.

The college provides students with the critical thinking tools and educational preparation needed for professional practice and cares for individuals, families, and communities through regional, national, and global engagement.

Address: 901 12th Ave, Seattle, WA 98122, United States

Phone: +1 206-296-5660

Also Read: 10 Best Nursing homes in Missouri

Pacific Lutheran University

Pacific Lutheran University is a nursing school in Washington with a lot to offer you. Students at PLU learn how to function effectively as nursing generalists who can rise to whatever professional challenges come their way. Though it admits students of all faiths, the university is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and the school’s avowed mission is to prepare students for lives of service and inquiry.

The School of Nursing receives research grants from Robert Wood Johnson and the Northwest Health Foundation’s Partners Investing in Nursing. Nursing classrooms and learning labs are located on the second and third floors of Ramstad Hall.

Learning labs are equipped with hospital beds, hospital fixtures, and computerized manikins so that students can become familiar with the physical assessments and functional skills they will need to know when they begin caring for real patients. It is one of the best nursing schools in Washington.

The nursing school partners with hospitals and community care agencies throughout the Greater Tacoma metropolitan area to provide students with clinical rotations; these partners include MultiCare Tacoma General Hospital, Mary Bridge Children’s and Allenmore Hospitals, Madigan Army Medical Center; Western State Mental Health Services and Veterans Administration Hospital at American Lake.

The School of Nursing is a member of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) and is approved by the Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, and Doctor of Nursing Practice programs at Pacific Lutheran University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Address: 12180 Park Ave. S, Tacoma, WA 98447, United States

Phone: +1 253-535-7411

Washington State University College of Nursing

The Washington State University College of Nursing offers one of the best nursing programs in Washington. It is affiliated with Washington State University.

Its main location is on the Washington State University Health Sciences campus in Spokane, Washington, with programs also offered at WSU Vancouver, WSU Tri-Cities, and in Yakima, Washington. Degrees offered include a Bachelor of Science in Nursing; RN-BSN; Master of Nursing; Doctor of Nursing Practice; and Ph.D. Enrollment among all programs at all locations was 942 for the spring semester of 2018.

The college was founded in Spokane in 1968 as the Intercollegiate Center for Nursing Education. The WSU College of Nursing still accepts students from Eastern Washington University and Whitworth University, two of the three original intercollegiate partners.

The WSU College of Nursing began offering a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) in 1969. It added the degree-completion program RN-BSN in 1978 and a Master of Nursing (MN) degree program in 1983 to train advanced-practice nurses to provide primary care. The Ph.D. program began in 2007, and the newest degree, the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), was added in 2012.

The Spokane League for Nursing and the Inland Empire Nurses’ Association formed a joint committee on nursing education in 1964 to establish a baccalaureate nursing program in Eastern Washington. It is one of the best nursing schools in Washington.

Address: 103 E Spokane Falls Blvd, Spokane, WA 99202, United States

Phone: +1 509-324-7360

Gonzaga University, Spokane

Gonzaga University is another Jesuit institution of higher learning that offers high-quality nursing programs in Washington. This nursing school uses the Complex Adaptive Systems framework as its basic teaching paradigm; this holistic model posits that an understanding of individual parts does not necessarily add up to an understanding of the complex whole.

In keeping with its Jesuit principles, this nursing school focuses on servant leadership, social justice, and community practice as well as on the acquisition of top-notch clinical skills.

Nursing students learn clinical skills by participating in simulated patient scenarios at the Simulation Innovation Resource Center on campus, and they also find out about the social conditions that affect the lives of many of the patients they will be caring for through unique learning opportunities like Poverty Simulation.

Clinical rotations take place in medical/surgical units, emergency rooms, intensive care units, and other clinical environments at hospitals throughout the greater Spokane region.

Gonzaga University offers a humanistic, Jesuit approach to nursing across three degrees, a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), and a doctoral degree in nursing practice (DNP) and a whole host of programs. It is one of the best nursing schools in Washington.

Gonzaga is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). The baccalaureate, master, and doctor of nursing practice degree programs at Gonzaga University are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Address: 502 East Boone Avenue, Spokane, WA 99258, United States

Phone: +1 800-986-9585

Related: 10 Best Nursing Schools in Florida

Seattle Pacific University

Another one of the best nursing schools in Washington, Seattle Pacific University (SPU) is a private Christian university in Seattle, Washington. It was founded in 1891 in conjunction with the Oregon and Washington Conference of the Free Methodist Church as the Seattle Seminary. It became the Seattle Seminary and College in 1913, adopting the name Seattle Pacific College two years later, and received its current name in 1977.

Seattle Pacific offers high-quality nursing programs in Washington. The bachelor of science degree with a major in Nursing is an upper-division major that builds on the SPU liberal arts foundation and prepares you to assume entry-level practice and leadership roles in a variety of acute care and community settings.

Seattle Pacific is known for developing students of competence and character, as well as delivering robust academics and relationship-centered learning grounded in Christian faith and values. BSN graduates of Seattle Pacific University are among today’s most sought-after practitioners, expertly prepared to meet the challenges of their fields and serve their communities.

Here, you’ll find faculty members who are committed to preparing you for success in the professional community. This means that personal, individual attention will be a significant part of your academic experience. What’s more, SPU faculty members bring real-world experience to your program, making coursework stimulating and clinically relevant.

SPU’s Nursing major offers a rigorous program of study, with a curriculum that will challenge you to strive for excellence in the classroom and clinical settings. The program emphasizes both health promotion and illness care and fosters the development of critical thinking, ethical thought and action, judgment, and collaboration.

Address: 3307 3rd Ave W, Seattle, WA 98119, United States

Phone: +1 206-281-2000

Olympic College

Olympic College is a public community college in Bremerton, Washington. It opened as Olympic Junior College on September 5, 1946. Olympic College serves Kitsap and Mason counties in Washington. The college offers great nursing programs in Washington.

The Olympic College Associate Degree Nursing (RN) Program prepares graduates for employment as Registered Nurses in-home care, acute care, long-term care, and community-based care agencies. The ADN Program is comprised of two pathways. The Nursing (RN) ATA Pathway is designed to prepare qualified candidates to become Registered Nurses in two years.

The Olympic College Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Program prepares graduates to provide safe direct patient care as a Bachelor-prepared Registered Nurse (RN). The BSN Program is comprised of two pathways. The Veterans and Licensed Practical Nurse to BSN (VL-BSN) Pathway provides for upward mobility and professional growth for Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) as well as military medics.

The Nursing (RN-BSN) Pathway provides working RNs advanced skills in leadership and population health, offering flexibility with one, two, or three-year plans to complete the degree. The Olympic College BSN Program is accredited by Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). It is one of the best nursing schools in Washington.

Address: 1600 Chester Ave, Bremerton, WA 98337, United States

Phone: +1 360-792-6050

Related: 6 best-accelerated nursing programs in Iowa

Other Top Nursing Programs In Washington

Here are some other top nursing programs in Washington.

Bates Technical College

Address: S Yakima Ave, Tacoma, WA 98405, United States

Phone: +1 253-680-7000


Clover Park Technical College (CPTC)

Address: 4500 Steilacoom Blvd SW, Lakewood, WA 98499, United States

Phone: +1 253-589-5800


Pierce College

Address: 6201 Winnetka Ave, Woodland Hills, CA 91367, United States

Phone: +1 818-719-6404


Columbia Basin College: Nursing Department

Address: 891 Northgate Dr, Richland, WA 99352, United States

Phone: +1 509-547-0511



This guide aims to help you make the best choice for the best nursing schools in Washington. Hopefully, you can make an educated decision on the best nursing program in Washington for you.

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