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Nursing Education in Utah


Nursing is the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury,

 alleviation of suffering through the diagnosis and treatment of human response, and

advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities, and populations.”

(American Nurses Association Nursing World, 2013).

As women and men decide to begin a career in the nursing profession, there are a number of choices open to them. The various educational options for entry into the field are discussed below. All nurses are encouraged to seek a long and active career in the profession. The 2010 Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health, recommended a) Increasing the proportion of nurses with a baccalaureate degree to 80 percent by 2020 and b) Doubling the number of nurses with a doctorate by 2020.  As the nursing profession evolves and health care systems evolve, the need for nurse leaders is especially serious. Most nursing leadership positions require advanced degrees.

This document addresses those beginning the journey to become a nurse and to inform them of options for nursing education and licensure in Utah. The goal is to encourage nurses to catch the vision to engage in lifelong learning and contribute to the profession at the highest level of one’s ability.

Another recommendation of the 2010 IOM study was “to decrease the barriers to pursuing advanced education”. One of the barriers to advancing education for nurses is that educational institutions have different requirements for admission and graduation. The differences may be in the accreditation requirements for the institution or the requirements of the nursing program of study.



Accreditation is a process of voluntary external review done by peer experts.  In order to obtain licensure in Utah, the nursing program and the college or university must be accredited.  These are two separate accreditations.  (retrieved July 21, 2014)

For more information click here:

Library Resources just a few clicks away:

FREE National Library of Medicine resources and more is right here in Utah.

The librarians at the National Network of Libraries of Medicine are here to help you with accessing online resources from the National Library of Medicine, the Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library at the University of Utah, and from your local public library. We can help you with all levels of information support from urgent patient care literature searches, developing patient information materials, to helping you find resources to support your doctoral dissertation or poster presentation for next year's UNA conference. There are FREE resources from the National Library of Medicine from k-12 education to easy to read consumer health information (videos, tutorials, drug info) to biomedical researchers. We also do monthly online training on accessing quality health information resources and would love it if you came (free continuing education credit available). We also do one-on-one consultations to hep you with your information needs. To find out more, contact John Bramble at 801 585 5743 (office) 800-338-7657 (toll free), or and get help today.

Volunteering in the State of Utah

     A number of people at the UNA conference asked about opportunities to volunteer. The Utah Commission on Volunteers has a website which provides links to volunteer centers in all Utah counties. It also provides links to and information about programs and opportunities throughout the state. 

Volunteering in Salt Lake County

     If you are interested in volunteering for groups in Salt Lake County, the website will connect you with Salt Lake County Volunteer Services.
      The volunteer opportunities for Salt Lake County are listed as well as links to community partners. There is a special program for retired seniors and Vicki Jo Hansen with RSVP (Retired Senior Volunteer Program) is great to work with folks to make sure they have a good fit for giving their time. The Health Access Project is especially looking for volunteers interested in giving time in the healthcare arena.


 Department of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL)
The State Board of Nursing is advisory to DOPL. We meet usually once a month to discuss educational program issues (provisionally approved programs and programs on probation) and review pass rates for NCLEX.  We also spend a good portion of our time meeting with nurses on probation for a variety of issues, the main one being substance abuse.  We review with them their compliance with the terms of the order on probation.  We also make suggested changes to the Nurse Practice Act for a legislator to sponsor, and we update, publish and enact changes to Rule.  We are to protect the public. The executive director is Laura Poe.

The Board of Nursing is a member of National Council State Boards of Nursing ( They work on national regulatory issues, do research about nursing and regulation, provide model language for Nurse Practice Acts, and maintain the national data base for nurses on probation.  They support the multi-state compact (of which Utah is a part).  Contact them at 801-530-6628 or

Utah School Nurse Association (USNA)
The Utah School Nurse Association (USNA) supports the health and educational success of children and youth by developing and providing leadership to advance school nursing practice by specialized registered nurses.  Learn more about  them at


Living Well with Chronic Illness

Nurses routinely encounter patients with chronic illnesses such as arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, or others in both their professional and personal lives. For many patients living with a chronic illness is a challenge for them, and also their friends and family.


Several organizations in Utah are now offering a FREE six week workshop designed to help people with chronic conditions and their caregivers manage their medical conditions and life challenges. The workshop, “Living Well with Chronic Conditions” was created by Stanford University and gives people tools for:


For more information about the workshop series go to


If you know patients, family, or friends who are struggling to manage their chronic illness or would just like more information, refer them to this six-week, two hour per week free workshop.

For information about times and places of the workshops, go to or call 801-538-9340.



For more up to date tracking health policy issues go to:



UNA Calendar

UNA Board of Directors Meeting

UNA Executive Committee Meeting

UNA Executive Committee Meeting

UNA Board of Directors Meeting

UNA Executive Committee Meeting