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.

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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
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Bakersfield College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Cerro Coso Community College - Indian Wells Valley
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Cerro Coso Community College - Kern River Valley
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Southern California Medical College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Fresno

Clovis Adult Education
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Fresno Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Fresno City College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Galen College of Medical and Dental Assistants
Programs offered: Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - Fresno
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Inland Empire

American Career College - Ontario
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Baldy View Regional Occupational Program
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Beaumont Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
California Nurses Educational Institute
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Career Care Institute - Moreno Valley
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Chaffey College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
College of the Desert
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Colton-Redlands-Yucaipa Regional Occupational Program
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Concorde Career College - San Bernardino
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Copper Mountain College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Four-D College - Colton
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Four-D College - Victorville
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Mt San Jacinto College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
North-West College - Riverside
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Palo Verde College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Riverside City College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
San Bernardino Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
San Bernardino Valley College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Sierra Pacific College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Summit College - Colton
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
UEI College - San Bernardino
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Victor Valley College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing
West Coast Ultrasound Institute - Ontario
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant

Los Angeles County

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

Merced

Merced College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing
WestMed College - Merced
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Modesto

Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - Modesto
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Kaplan College - Modesto
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Modesto Junior College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing

Napa

Napa Valley College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Orange County

American Career College - Orange County
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
California Career Institute - Garden Grove
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Casa Loma College - Anaheim
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
CNI College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Concorde Career College - Garden Grove
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Cypress College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Everest College - Anaheim
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Golden West College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing
North Orange County Regional Occupational Program
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Saddleback College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing
Santa Ana College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Summit College - Anaheim
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant

Oxnard / Thousand Oaks / Ventura area

Career Care Institute - Ventura
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Moorpark College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Professional Medical Careers Institute
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Ventura College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing

Sacramento

American River College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Carrington College California - Sacramento
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Charles A Jones Career & Education Center
Programs offered: Certificate in Nursing Assistant; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Curam College of Nursing
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Kaplan College - Sacramento
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Sacramento City College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Sierra College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Twin Rivers Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Patient Care Aide

Salinas

Hartnell College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Monterey Peninsula College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing

San Diego County

Concorde Career College - San Diego
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Grossmont College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Grossmont Health Occupations Center
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Kaplan College - San Diego
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Kaplan College - Vista
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
MiraCosta College
Programs offered: Certificate in Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant; Associate's in Registered Nursing
Palomar College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
San Diego City College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
San Diego Continuing Education
Programs offered: Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Southwestern College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
UEI College - Chula Vista
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

San Francisco Bay metro area

American College of Nursing
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Bay Area College of Nursing - Daly City
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Bay Area College of Nursing - Palo Alto
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Carrington College California - Pleasant Hill
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Carrington College California - San Jose
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Carrington College California - San Leandro
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Chabot College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
City College of San Francisco
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
College of Marin
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
College of San Mateo
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing
Contra Costa College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
De Anza College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Evergreen Valley College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Gavilan College
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - Concord
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts - San Mateo
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Los Medanos College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Medical Career College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Merritt College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Mission College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Mt Diablo Adult Education
Programs offered: Certificate in Nursing Assistant
NCP College of Nursing - Hayward
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
NCP College of Nursing - South San Francisco
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Ohlone College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
WestMed College - San Jose
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

San Luis Obispo

Cuesta College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Santa Barbara

Allan Hancock College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Santa Barbara City College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Santa Cruz

Cabrillo College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing

Sonoma

Santa Rosa Junior College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Stockton

San Joaquin Delta College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing
Xavier College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Vallejo / Fairfield area

Blake Austin College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
InterCoast College - Fairfield
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
PRIME Career College
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Solano Community College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing

Visalia / Porterville area

College of the Sequoias
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing Assistant
Dinuba Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Porterville College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
San Joaquin Valley College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Tulare Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Visalia Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing

Other California cities

Butte College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Cerro Coso Community College - Eastern Sierra College Center
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
College of the Redwoods - Del Norte
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
College of the Redwoods - Eureka
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
College of the Siskiyous
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Feather River College - Fall River Mills
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Feather River College - Quincy
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Hanford Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Imperial Valley College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Institute of Technology
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Lassen Community College
Programs offered: Associate's in Licensed Vocational Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Madera Community College Center
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Mendocino College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Shasta College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing; Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Tri-County Regional Occupational Program
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
Ukiah Adult School
Programs offered: Certificate in Licensed Vocational Nursing
West Hills College Lemoore
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
Yuba College
Programs offered: Associate's in Registered Nursing
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