Nursing ADN

Nursing ADN

Hands-On Learning to Create Great Registered Nurses

Use your passion for helping and earn a great living in an in-demand career field! Your future as a registered nurse (RN) starts here at Kirkwood with our multi-tiered nursing programs to provide options. 

The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) program functions as a piece of the nursing ladder program in which the first two semesters of the program lead to a Practical Nursing (PN) diploma. With additional semesters, you'll earn your ADN.

Start Your ADN Connect with Us Nursing FAQs 

Kirkwood offers more than $3 million in scholarships for students each year, with 35 specifically for students enrolled in nursing programs. Nursing students may also qualify for the tuition-free Last Dollar Scholarship and/or the Kibbie Grant.

Classes in the nursing program cover a full range of clinical situations and modalities, including medical, surgical, geriatric, maternal-child, pediatric, and mental health. You'll also learn patient care skills through supervised laboratory, simulation, and real-life clinical experiences starting in your first semester.

Simulation experiences occur in Kirkwood’s state-of-the art Katz Family Healthcare Simulation Center. Clinical instruction in all of the major areas of nursing occurs in area hospitals, nursing homes, mental health facilities, and other health care agencies.

Kirkwood ADN (RN) graduates are valued employees at numerous local health care agencies. With nursing continuing to be in high-demand, you can find job security and a great future wherever you decide to go. 

After graduating, you can work in a variety of clinical settings including:

  • Acute care
  • Community health
  • Dialysis
  • Emergency room
  • Home care
  • Intensive care
  • Nursing home
  • Office
  • Operating room
  • School nurse

Program Requirements

All nursing students are required to complete Certified Nurse Aid training and successfully pass the written and skills examination before beginning the technical and clinical portion of the program. 

You must also be on the Iowa Direct Care Worker registry and be listed as "eligible."

Explore More

With your ADN from Kirkwood, you can easily transfer to an RN-BSN program at a four-year school. Some institutions our graduates have attended after finishing their ADN studies include:

  • The University of Iowa
  • Allen College
  • Iowa Wesleyan University
  • Mount Mercy University
  • Upper Iowa University
  • St. Ambrose University
  • University of Dubuque
  • William Penn University

Further education in MSN or DNP programs can open up unlimited employment opportunities as a nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, nurse anesthetist, nurse educator, or nurse manager. Additionally, many area employers provide funding for associate degree RNs graduating from community colleges to complete their RN-BSN degrees. 

Within the scope of practice of the registered nurse, the Kirkwood nursing program graduates will: 

  • Provide compassionate patient-centered care to meet client physical, psychological, cultural and spiritual needs, within the context of the family and the community.
  • Collaborate with members of the interdisciplinary health care team to ensure the provision of safe, quality, effective care through the use of communication and relationship–building skills.
  • Use systematic assessment, critical analysis, and application of best evidence and practices to implement evidence-based health promotion, prevention, and condition management to optimize patient, family, and population health.
  • Participate in the development and implementation of health care organization quality improvements.
  • Implement safe care practices for patients, families, communities, and members of the health care team.
  • Utilize electronic medical records, intranet and internet resources, and other informatics resources and tools to make informed clinical decisions.
  • Facilitate patient self-management of health through planned education coordinated across the continuum of care to promote health, prevent illness, and manage health care conditions in the context of the family and the community.
  • Perform all activities ethically and with integrity, always demonstrating a commitment to provide evidence-based, safe, quality, compassionate care for diverse patients, families, and communities.
  • Develop and use leadership skills to organize, motivate, and inspire health care team members to provide safe, quality, effective and efficient patient care.

Kirkwood ADN (RN) graduates are well prepared to successfully pass the NCLEX-RN. Over the past four years, more than 94 percent of our graduates have passed the exam. Current NCLEX-RN rates for all nursing programs in the state of Iowa are published on the Iowa Board of Nursing website.

Prepare for your new career with an intensive twelve to sixteen week, one-on-one preceptorship with an experienced staff nurse in one of eight local area hospitals. You'll get hands-on clinical experience to create an easier transition to practice, and these preceptorships often lead to full-time positions upon graduation!


Department of Nursing

2172 Linn Hall