The Midwest’s Best Family Nurse Practitioner Programs

My sister-in-law hails from Ohio and is full of Midwestern pride. For Christmas this year, I gave her a book titled The Midwest: God’s Gift to Planet Earth, which she opened with a beaming smile. Born on the West Coast, I always assumed that my own region had its fair share of perks to offer. I mean, we have a coastline and that beats corn fields, right? Wrong – if you’re talking to a Midwesterner. Nurse practitioner students I talk with in the Midwest prefer to find jobs in the area, staying true to their roots in the region. So, in the spirit of Midwest pride, here’s a look at the Midwest’s top nurse practitioner programs. 

As you check out our list of Midwest picks, keep in mind the metrics we used to select these nurse practitioner programs. There will be many other considerations in making your NP school selection, but this list should help you get started.

1. University of Iowa

Degrees Offered: DNP

Certification Pass Rate: 100%

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Iowa City, Iowa may not be one of the largest cities in our nation, but the University of Iowa’s College of Nursing ranks among the top nursing schools in the country. The school’s family nurse practitioner program boasts a 100% passing rate among graduates on the national certification exam, not to mention, the school has a clinical placement director that matches students up with clinical sites. As a result of the quality education FNP students receive, many are employed even before graduation, according to faculty.

2. University of Michigan 

Degrees Offered: MSN, DNP

Certification Pass Rate: 100%

The University of Michigan’s website boasts that its nurse practitioner curriculum is cutting edge. With a 100% passing rate among graduates on the certification exam, we’re inclined to take their word for it. Like our prior school pick, a clinical placement office assigns preceptors taking the responsibility off of the plates of students. Graduates of the University of Michigan’s family nurse practitioner program find jobs quickly, and about 80% are employed within just a few months of graduation.

3. South Dakota State University

Degrees Offered: MSN, DNP

Certification Pass Rate: 100%

South Dakota State University reinstated its family nurse practitioner program in 2014 and the endeavor is off to a successful start. The school makes life easier for FNP students by matching them with clinical preceptors, a service that’s an increasingly rare find among NP programs. To round out the school’s high quality package, nearly all nurse practitioner graduates secure employment shortly after graduation day.

4. University of Nebraska

Degrees Offered: MSN

Certification Pass Rate: 100%

Cornhuskers are passionate about the school’s football team, but they should be equally as proud of Nebraska’s FNP program as well. Not only does the University of Nebraska offer the family nurse practitioner program in a flexible format for working students, faculty at the school also identify and match FNP students with preceptorships.

5. Indiana University Purdue

Degrees Offered: MSN, DNP

Certification Pass Rate: 100%

The Indiana University – Purdue University School of Nursing is nationally ranked, and it shows. Not only do graduates of the school’s family NP program have a 100% passing rate on the national certification exam, the school features perks like professional development conferences, workshops, and seminars throughout the year. While IU-Purdue does not offer full-service clinical placement services, faculty say they will never leave a student stranded when it comes to preceptorships. Faculty also note that most students find jobs quickly, many even before graduation.

6. Saint Xavier

Degrees Offered: MSN

Certification Pass Rate: 100

Saint Xavier may be a lesser known school to prospective nurse practitioners, but don’t let its anonymity fool you. Graduates of Saint Xavier’s FNP program enjoy a 100% passing rate on the national certification exam as well as the convenience of attending a program that identifies clinical sites on behalf of students. While the school doesn’t specifically track post-graduation employment, faculty say that many students land jobs before graduation and the remainder shortly after.

Where will you go for your FNP degree?

You Might Also Like: 5 ‘Extras’ that Make a Standout Nurse Practitioner Program 

1 thought on “The Midwest’s Best Family Nurse Practitioner Programs”

  1. Don’t forget UWEC- They have a phenomenal FNP program. They also provide student
    clinical sites and faculty truly support the adult learner.

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