Find a nursing school near you

Programs include LPN/LVN, ADN, BSN, MSN, and more

While employers often prefer to hire nurses with a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degree for more advanced roles, an associate's degree in nursing (ADN) can prepare you for the state licensing exam and provide the skills needed to provide care in a number of introductory settings. Many aspiring nursing professionals choose this path because an ADN takes less time to complete than a BSN. In fact, according to the California Board of Registered Nursing, a BSN requires four years of study while an ADN may be completed in just two to three years.

ADN programs are offered at many vocational, career, and community colleges. These schools typically award an associate's (two-year) degree as their highest honor upon completion of the ADN course of study. Some vocational schools and career colleges also offer an even faster path to nursing employment through a variety of one-year training programs, which award a certificate or diploma upon successful completion.

Find a school

The best nursing programs are offered through accredited schools licensed by the California State Department of Education and/or an accrediting body recognized by the US Department of Education. Some of California’s most recognized vocational, career, and community colleges for nursing include City College of San Francisco, Los Angeles Trade Technical College, American Career College (four campuses), and Kaplan College (five campuses).

After nursing professionals earn credentials from these programs and complete state licensure, they have a number of employment options throughout the state of California. A few of the major California employers for aspiring nursing professionals include Glendale Adventist Medical Center, Grossmont Hospital in La Mesa, Scripps Mercy Hospital in San Diego, and St. Joseph Hospital in Orange.

Below is a list of California vocational, career, and community schools that offer some of the best accredited nursing programs in one or more nursing career paths.

Bakersfield

Bakersfield Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Bakersfield College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Cerro Coso Community College - Indian Wells Valley
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Cerro Coso Community College - Kern River Valley
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Southern California Medical College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

Fresno

Clovis Adult Education
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Fresno Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Fresno City College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - Fresno
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

Inland Empire

American Career College - Ontario
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Baldy View Regional Occupational Program
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Beaumont Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
California Nurses Educational Institute
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Career Care Institute - Moreno Valley
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Chaffey College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
College of the Desert
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Colton-Redlands-Yucaipa Regional Occupational Program
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Concorde Career College - San Bernardino
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Copper Mountain College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Four-D College - Colton
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Four-D College - Victorville
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Mt. San Jacinto College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
North-West College - Riverside
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Palo Verde College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Riverside City College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
San Bernardino Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
San Bernardino Valley College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Sierra Pacific College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Summit College - Colton
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
UEI College - San Bernardino
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Victor Valley College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
West Coast Ultrasound Institute - Ontario
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate

Los Angeles County

Advanced College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Allied Medical & Health Services
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
American Career College - Los Angeles
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
American Career College - St. Francis in Lynwood
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
American Medical Sciences Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Angeles Institute
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Annenberg School of Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Antelope Valley College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Baldwin Park Adult & Community Education
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Brightwood College - North Hollywood
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
California Career College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
California Career Institute - Hawthorne
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Career Care Institute - Lancaster
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Career Development Institute
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Casa Loma College - Van Nuys
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Central Nursing College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Cerritos College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
CES College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Charter College - Canyon Country
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Charter College - Long Beach
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Citrus College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
College of Nursing & Technology
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
College of the Canyons
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Concorde Career College - North Hollywood
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Downey Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
East Los Angeles College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
East Los Angeles Occupational Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
East San Gabriel Valley Regional Occupational Program
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
El Camino College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
El Camino College Compton Center
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
El Monte-Rosemead Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Glendale Career College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Glendale Community College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Hacienda La Puente Adult Education
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
High Desert Medical College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Homestead Schools
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Infotech Career College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Integrity College of Health
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Jordan-Locke Community Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Long Beach City College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Los Angeles City College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Los Angeles County College of Nursing and Allied Health
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Los Angeles Harbor College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Los Angeles Southwest College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Los Angeles Trade Technical College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Los Angeles Valley College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Lynwood Community Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Manual Arts-Crenshaw Community Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Marian College - Los Angeles
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Marian College - Van Nuys
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Maxine Waters Employment Preparation Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Medical Allied Career Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Medical Career Institute
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Mt. San Antonio College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
North Valley Occupational Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
North-West College - Long Beach
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
North-West College - Pasadena
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
North-West College - Pomona
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
North-West College - West Covina
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Pasadena City College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Pierce College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Pomona Adult & Career Education
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Preferred College of Nursing - Carson
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Preferred College of Nursing - Los Angeles
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Preferred College of Nursing - Van Nuys
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Premiere Career College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Rio Hondo College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Saint Joseph's School of Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Santa Monica College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Trinity Vocational Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Valley College of Medical Careers
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Valley School of Allied Health
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
West Coast Ultrasound Institute - Beverly Hills
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
West Valley Occupational Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
YWCA Los Angeles Job Corps
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

Merced

Merced College
  • Associate of Arts in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
WestMed College - Merced
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

Modesto

Brightwood College - Modesto
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - Modesto
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Modesto Junior College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Napa

Napa Valley College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Orange County

American Career College - Orange County
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
California Career Institute - Garden Grove
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Casa Loma College - Anaheim
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
CNI College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Concorde Career College - Garden Grove
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Cypress College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Golden West College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
North Orange County Regional Occupational Program
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Saddleback College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Santa Ana College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Summit College - Anaheim
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate

Oxnard / Thousand Oaks / Ventura area

Career Care Institute - Ventura
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Moorpark College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Professional Medical Careers Institute
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Ventura College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Sacramento

American River College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Brightwood College - Sacramento
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Carrington College - Sacramento
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Charles A. Jones Career & Education Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Curam College of Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Sacramento City College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Sierra College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Salinas

Hartnell College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Monterey Peninsula College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

San Diego County

Brightwood College - San Diego
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Brightwood College - Vista
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Concorde Career College - San Diego
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Grossmont College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Grossmont Health Occupations Center
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
MiraCosta College
  • Associate of Arts in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Palomar College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
San Diego City College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
San Diego Continuing Education
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Southwestern College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
UEI College - Chula Vista
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

San Francisco Bay metro area

American College of Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Bay Area College of Nursing - Daly City
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Bay Area College of Nursing - Palo Alto
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Carrington College - San Jose
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Chabot College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
City College of San Francisco
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
College of Marin
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
College of San Mateo
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Contra Costa College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
De Anza College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Evergreen Valley College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Gavilan College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - Concord
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - San Mateo
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Los Medanos College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Medical Career College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Merritt College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Mission College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Mt. Diablo Adult Education
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
NCP College of Nursing - Hayward
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
NCP College of Nursing - South San Francisco
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Ohlone College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
WestMed College - San Jose
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

San Luis Obispo

Cuesta College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Santa Barbara

Allan Hancock College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Santa Barbara City College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Santa Cruz

Cabrillo College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Sonoma

Santa Rosa Junior College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Stockton

San Joaquin Delta College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Xavier College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

Vallejo / Fairfield area

Blake Austin College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
InterCoast College - Fairfield
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
PRIME Career College
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Solano Community College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option

Visalia / Porterville area

College of the Sequoias
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
  • Nursing Assistant Certificate
Dinuba Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Porterville College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
San Joaquin Valley College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Tulare Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Visalia Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing

Other California cities

Butte College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Cerro Coso Community College - Eastern Sierra College Center
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
College of the Redwoods - Del Norte
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
College of the Redwoods - Eureka
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
College of the Siskiyous
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Feather River College - Fall River Mills
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Feather River College - Quincy
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Hanford Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Imperial Valley College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Institute of Technology
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Lassen Community College
  • Associate of Science in Vocational Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Madera Community College Center
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Mendocino College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Shasta College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Tri-County Regional Occupational Program
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
Ukiah Adult School
  • Certificate in Vocational Nursing
West Hills College Lemoore
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
Yuba College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • LVN-to-RN 30-Unit Option
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