Qualified, dedicated nursing professionals enjoy stable salaries and constantly increasing employment opportunities. For busy students, online nursing degrees in Mississippi allow students to complete coursework at their own pace and according to their schedule.
Registered nurses earn a median annual salary of $68,450, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 14% job growth by 2024. A bachelor’s degree in nursing involves a comprehensive healthcare education and leads to licensure as a registered nurse. BSN programs expose students to different specialties, including prenatal, intensive care, and psychiatric nursing.
Most online nursing degree programs deliver coursework entirely online, but students must complete onsite clinical requirements. Hands-on experience is critical preparation for nursing positions and is typically required to earn a online nursing degree.
How to Become a Nurse in Mississippi
The first step to becoming a nurse is earning a degree from one of the nursing schools in Mississippi. An associate or bachelor’s of nursing degree is required to sit for the test that leads to a nursing license. After graduating, nursing candidates must pass the National Licensure Exam for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN), which costs $200. Licensure qualifies professionals for a variety of career options in the healthcare field and increases long-term salary prospects.
Choose the Path That's Right for You
Earning an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing is the first step obtaining a nursing license. A nursing degree is required to sit for the NCLEX, which all nurses must pass before practicing in Mississippi. Individuals who plan to pursue advanced nursing positions or to teach nursing at the college level should earn a master’s or doctorate, respectively. Some nursing schools in Mississippi offer accelerated bachelor’s degree programs that prepare students for MSN or DSN programs.
Earn Your Nursing Degree
Working professionals attending nursing schools in Mississippi often choose online nursing degree programs, which offer flexible scheduling with full-time or part-time enrollment status. Some programs are designed for students with no healthcare experience, and others are ideal for current RNs who want to earn a bachelor’s degree. Along with remote coursework, online nursing programs in Mississippi require in-person components, such as clinicals, fellowships, and internships. Most full-time students earn a bachelor’s degree in four years, an associate in two years, and a master’s in two years.
Pass the Licensing Exam and Earn Your License
All nursing candidates must pass the NCLEX-RN to obtain licensure. State licensing boards use this examination to ensure nurses are properly trained and are prepared to meet recognized standards of nursing practice. The exam costs $200 and requires a nursing license application. After passing the five-hour, multiple choice exam, candidates are qualified for entry-level nursing positions.
Nursing Licensure in Mississippi
After completing one year of an online nursing degree program, students qualify to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Licensed Practical Nurses and obtain a licensed practical nurse diploma. After passing the exam and becoming a licensed LPN, continued education credits are necessary to maintain licensure. Because RNs have more career options and increased earning potential, most students pursue an associate or bachelor’s degree in nursing.
After earning a degree from a nursing school in Mississippi and completing required clinical hours, nursing candidates must pass the NCLEX-RN to obtain licensure and practice nursing. Mississippi is a Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) state, which means nurses licensed in Mississippi may practice in any NLC state without obtaining an additional license. Aspiring advanced practical nurses should pursue a master’s degree in a specialized area, such as nurse midwifery, general nursing, or nurse anesthesia. Master’s degree holders qualify for national certification their concentration, which allows professionals to work in any state that accepts national licensure.
Nursing Licensing Costs in Mississippi
RN License $100
LPN License $60
RN Total $300
LPN Total $260
Career Outlook for Nurses in Mississippi
After obtaining an online nursing degree and passing the NCLEX-RN, registered nurses work in a variety of settings. In a physician’s office, RNs work a traditional schedule, but hospital nurses work in a variety of capacities, including intensive care and surgical recovery. Nurses at nursing homes and in-home care services have more scheduling flexibility and autonomy. Travel nurses typically complete short-term assignments at global locations and often receive relocation funds.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment for registered nurses to increase 14% by 2024. Although nurses in Mississippi earn mean wages lower than the national average, Mississippi is an NLC state, which means graduates of nursing schools in Mississippi can practice in any of the 25 NLC states.
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Nursing students should investigate large hospitals, as large facilities typically have more employment opportunities. Hospitals are ideal for recent nursing graduates, since they often have large numbers of available entry-level positions. They are also a valuable resource for students in nursing schools in Mississippi; hospitals offer fellowships and internships for students working toward their license.
- North Mississippi Medical Center: Located in Tupelo, this hospital employs more than 5,000 people and has 650 beds; it’s the largest non-metropolitan hospital in the United States. The hospital won the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award in 2006 and 2012 and actively seeks qualified nurses.
- Baptist Health Systems: Baptist Health Systems comprises hospitals and centers across Mississippi, including Baptist Medical Center and centers in Attala, Center Leake, and Yazoo. The group has a total of 564 beds and approximately 3,000 employees.
- University of Mississippi Medical Center: Located in Jackson, the University of Mississippi Medical Center has more than 3,000 full-time employees and is the state’s only academic medical science center. Serving the greater Jackson area, this medical center has 722 beds and the only children’s hospital in Mississippi.
- Forrest General Hospital: Forrest General Hospital employs nearly 3,000 people. The flagship facility in Hattiesburg has 512 beds and serves 19 counties. The hospital actively recruits new nurses and offers one of the most competitive benefits packages for nurses in Mississippi. New employees with six months of hospital experience or less take a one-year nurse residency program.
Additional Nursing Resources in Mississippi
Mississippi Nurses Association
This organization supports nurses in Mississippi. The association holds a statewide nursing summit each year to focus on the critical role of registered nurses, as well as current issues and legislative agenda relevant to the nursing profession.
Mississippi Board of Nursing
Through this organization, nurses apply for licensure and licensure renewal. The website details application deadlines and fees, provides educational resources, and lists rules and regulations for nurses in Mississippi.
Mississippi Association of Student Nurses
This organization supports nursing students and encourages active participation in community healthcare projects. The association aims to improve the quality of nursing education in Mississippi.
Mississippi Nurses Foundation
Established by the Mississippi Nurses Association, this charitable organization provides resources such as scholarships, professional development, and continuing education. The foundation offers research grants of up to $2,000 and a number of scholarships, awards, and stipends for RNs.
Mississippi Association of Nurse Practitioners
This organization for NPs maintains a state-of-the-art training facility. The association advocates for NPs with both state and national policymakers and hosts conferences and meetings for members.
Accredited Online Nursing Programs in Mississippi
The following database includes all accredited online nursing degree programs in Mississippi. Nursing students may pursue an associate degree in nursing, a bachelor’s of science in nursing, a master’s of science in nursing, or a doctor of nursing practice. Current registered nurses who want to earn their bachelor’s may enroll in an RN to BSN program.