Wyoming faces the same problem of nursing shortage as the rest of the country. Based on the projections of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national demand for registered nurses will grow by 19% in 2020. Wyoming has been exerting efforts to meet such nursing demand by strengthening programs that address the education and recruitment of nurses to fill the projected shortage.
The problem becomes more acute because of the fact that the state’s nursing workforce is rapidly aging. The impact of Wyoming’s aging nurses will be felt across the entire nursing field. Added to this scenario are the aging but growing population of the state and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act which allowed more people access to health care.
The health care situation in Wyoming elicited positive response from the state government that committed to have a large segment of the workforce educated to the bachelor’s degree level. The situation also calls for increase in the average salary of nurses in the state which currently is $58,000, which is way below the national average. Improved salary of nurses is expected to encourage more high school graduates to enroll in the different nursing programs offered by the schools throughout the state.
Wyoming students who intend to become registered nurses have the option of pursuing their nursing degrees at the different nursing schools in the state.
1. University of Wyoming
The University of Wyoming, a land-grant university in Laramie, Wyoming, was established in 1886 at the state’s Laramie Plains with an elevation of 7,220 feet. It is situated between the Snowy Range and Laramie mountains. The university is composed of seven colleges that offers almost 200 undergraduate, graduate, post-graduate and certificate programs. The university belongs to the top 15 percent of the United States’ four-year colleges as determined by the Princeton Review of 2011.
The university offers, in addition to its on-campus programs, an Outreach School that offers more than 40 degrees, certificates, and endorsement programs of distance learning across Wyoming and beyond. The Outreach School with nine regional centers and locations of different community college campus offers Wyoming population access to university education without the need of relocating to Laramie.
University of Wyoming’s College of Health Science offers various programs in the field of health care, including nursing. The university’s nursing program at the Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing offers various nursing programs and degree options as follows:
- Four-year on-campus Bachelor of Science in Nursing program
- Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program for students who graduated with a non-nursing bachelor’s degree
- Online Bachelor of Science in Nursing program for Registered Nurses; online Bachelor of Science in Nursing program for Wyoming’s associate degree in nursing students
- Online Master of Science in Nursing program for Registered Nurses (RNs) with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree
- Nurse Educator
- Nursing Leadership degree to start in school year 2017
- Distance-accessible Doctor of Nursing Practice program
The University of Wyoming’s Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing offers scholarship and financial assistance opportunities to deserving students.
For information about the University of Wyoming Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing, please contact:
UW FWW School of Nursing
Visit: Health Sciences 351
Mail: Dept. 3065
1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie, WY 82071
Phone: (307) 766-4312
Fax: (307) 766-4294
2. Casper College
Casper College is a comprehensive and large community college located in the city of Casper, the state’s second largest city. It was established in 1945 as the state’s first junior college sharing home with the Natrona County High School. Casper College has a campus that sits on a 200 acre-property that houses 28 buildings. Casper College caters to more than 5,000 students who come from the different parts of Wyoming, different states, and counties.
Casper College maintains academic programs that prepare its students to enter a university level of education or join the workforce. The programs offered by the college parallel the initial two years of a bachelor’s degree as well as provide the students valuable learning opportunities. Casper College partners with institutions of higher learning all over the country to enable its students to pursue bachelor, graduate, and post-graduate degrees. Casper College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and University.
The Casper College H.E. Stuckenhoff Department of Nursing is one of Wyoming’s hallmarks of learning that offer an associate degree of nursing. It promotes professionalism in the nursing profession by offering the basic requirements of an associate degree that will qualify the graduate to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).
Casper College offers Associate of Science in Nursing and Associate of Applied Science in Nursing.
Information about the nursing programs at Casper College may be obtained from:
Ms. Heather Huber
Nursing Program Director
125 College Drive
Casper, WY 82601
3. Central Wyoming College
Central Wyoming College is a comprehensive community college with campus at Riverton, Wyoming. Central Wyoming College maintains outreach centers in Lander, Jackson, Dubois, and the Wind River Indian Reservation. It also offers online classes. The college offers associate degrees that prepare students to pursue a bachelor’s degree in a university or join the state’s workforce. The creation of the community college started in 1950 but was realized only in 1966 after the proposal was approved by the voters of Fremont County.
Central Wyoming College is famous for the associate degree in nursing program. It is also home to the state’s only public television network, the Wyoming PBS, and the student-operated radio station KCWC-FM.
Central Wyoming College’s Associate Degree in Nursing program is approved by the Wyoming State Board of Nursing. It is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.
Application for Central Wyoming College nursing program must be submitted by March 1 of each year. Applicants to the nursing program must first meet all the general admission requirements of Central Wyoming College. Acceptance to the nursing program will be based on the result of the evaluation of the applicant’s record. Applicants must specify the program site they are applying for: main campus at Riverton or the outreach site in Jackson Hole. Admission will be limited to the available number of faculty and clinical practice sites.
Information about Central Wyoming College’s nursing program may be obtained from:
Assistant Director of Nursing
2660 Peck Avenue
Riverton, WY 82501
Telephone (307) 855-2226 or 1-800-735-8414 ext. 2226
4. Laramie County Community College
Laramie County Community College is a community college in Laramie County. It has campuses in Laramie and Cheyenne, as well as outreach centers in Pine Bluffs and at the F. W. Warren Air Force Base. Established in 1968, Laramie County Community College offers 80 associate degrees, 30 certificates of completion, and non-credit classes. It has a student population of more than 6,000.
Laramie County Community College maintains articulation agreements with numerous universities to ensure that most classes offered will be credited when they transfer.
Laramie County Community College offers programs leading to Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse.
Information about the nursing program may be obtained from:
Laramie County Community College
1400 E College Drive
Cheyenne, WY 82004
Telephone: (307) 778-5222
5. Sheridan College
Sheridan College is a Wyoming community college established in 1948 and run by the Northern Wyoming Community College District. The Northern Wyoming Community College District has campuses in Sheridan and in Gillette, and outreach programs in the counties of Campbell, Johnson, and Sheridan.
Sheridan College offers programs in associate of arts, associate of science, associate in applied science, certificate programs, and tracks to prepare students for eventual transfer to a four-year university. Many of Sheridan College students enroll in programs that cater to career training and professional development programs for vocational and technical skills to prepare them entry into the Wyoming workforce.
Sheridan College offers Associate of Applied Science with optional Practical Nursing certificate after the first of the two-year course. The associate degree prepares graduates to work as Registered Nurses upon passing of the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). The associate degree in nursing program is approved by the Wyoming State Board of Nursing and is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education Nursing.
Graduates of the Associate of Applied Science in nursing program of the Sheridan College are eligible to take upper level courses in nursing leading to the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree in a four-year college or university.
Applicants to Sheridan College’s associate degree program in nursing must submit the following requirements:
- Application for general admission to the North Wyoming Community College District.
- Application for admission to the Sheridan College Nursing Program.
- Official high school transcript or GED certificate.
- Official transcript from a college previously attended.
- Cumulative GPA of 2.5
- Completion of ENGl *1010-English I or English Composition 1 course with a grade of “C” or better.
- TEAS exam with “Proficient” category or above.
Information about Sheridan College nursing program may be obtained from:
Sheridan College Main Campus
3059 Coffen Avenue
Sheridan, WY 82801
Telephone: (307) 674-6446