The University of South Carolina’s College of Nursing retained the No. 1 national ranking for its online graduate nursing program, according to U.S. News and World Report’s annual online program rankings released Tuesday (Jan. 25).
The university’s online master’s in nursing administration broke into the Top 10, moving up five spaces from the previous year and now ranks as the nation’s 9th best. The nursing school also kept its No. 1 spot for the second consecutive year as the top online nursing graduate program for veterans.
Online graduate programs are particularly important in nursing because they offer flexibility to the many students who already are practicing in the field. UofSC’s success in this area demonstrates both its academic excellence and its commitment to providing flexible degree pathways.
“The College of Nursing continues with its steadfast momentum of excellence in the preparation of nursing professionals to advance their careers,” Dean Jeannette Andrews says. “Working nurses, now more than ever, need flexibility and convenient alternatives to traditional classroom instruction, with expectations for rigor and highest standards expected for graduate education. The online ‘classroom’ — along with clinical rotations and other experiential learning in their own regional health systems — provides graduate nursing students an opportunity to continue to advance their education, which otherwise may be limited.”
The College of Nursing has placed in the top 10 of the online graduate rankings for the past eight years. The college also is in the top 1 percent in the country for pass rates on the NCLEX, the national exam for licensing nurses.
“Our world-class faculty and student community service during the pandemic has been extraordinary, yet not unexpected, as they are trained to advocate on behalf of their patients and communities. Our team truly ‘walks the talk’ to keep the public healthy and safe and are exemplary role models and leaders,” Andrews says.
Other UofSC highlights in the U.S. News rankings include:
The College of Education improved to No. 20 in the best online graduate education programs, moving up three spots from the previous year.
USC Aiken moved up 15 spots to No. 87 in the best online bachelor’s programs, and the campus was also ranked among the best online MBA for veterans (No. 90).
“As the state’s flagship university, we continue to prioritize accessibility, so that any student who wants to earn a college degree has a pathway to do so,” Interim President Harris Pastides says. “I’m proud to see our top-ranked online nursing programs recognized for providing high-quality academic experiences and preparing the health care professionals we need in South Carolina.”