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By focusing on two-year programs, vocational and community colleges allow students to complete their career training in a short amount of time. Upon graduation, students are prepared to seek employment immediately. In addition to a shorter time commitment, two-year nursing programs are cost-effective and offer extensive hands-on training.

Community college programs for nursing
Vocational and community colleges are the ideal option for students seeking immediate employment. Despite the short duration, two-year programs provide students with critical nursing skills, advanced science education, and clinical experience. This gives graduates an applicable and practical skillset that can be utilized immediately after graduation. South Dakota’s aspiring registered nurses (RNs) can pursue a two-year associate’s degree in nursing (ADN) in preparation for the NCLEX-RN national licensure exam. Aspiring licensed practical nurses (LPNs) can complete a shorter 12- to 18-month certificate program in preparation for the NCLEX-PN national licensure exam. Certified nursing assistants (CNAs) need only finish a brief training program and pass a state examination.

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Training and career outlook
South Dakota is home to several vocational and community colleges with nursing programs, including Southeast Technical Institute in Sioux Falls and Western Dakota Technical Institute in Rapid City. The state is home to about 20,000 nurses in total. South Dakota’s CNAs earn a median annual salary of $22,680, while its LPNs take home $34,550 per year. The state’s registered nurses earn almost $51,000 annually.

To help South Dakota’s nursing students find the most suitable program, we’ve profiled below each of the state’s vocational, career, and community colleges for nursing.

Featured Schools

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South Dakota

Lake Area Technical Institute
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
Sisseton Wahpeton College
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
Southeast Technical Institute
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
Western Dakota Technical Institute
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
School City Programs offered
Lake Area Technical Institute Watertown
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
Sisseton Wahpeton College Sisseton
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
Southeast Technical Institute Sioux Falls
  • Associate's Degree in Nursing
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing
Western Dakota Technical Institute Rapid City
  • Certificate in Practical Nursing