Top Nursing Schools in New Hampshire

Rank School Name Score Tuition Student/Teacher ratio Program count Graduation Rate
1 Lakes Region Community College 97.75 $$$$$ 10:1 2 27%
2 River Valley Community College 97.25 $$$$$ 6:1 2 19%
3 Nashua Community College 97.00 $$$$$ 10:1 2 23%
4 White Mountains Community College 97.00 $$$$$ 7:1 2 48%
5 Great Bay Community College 96.00 $$$$$ 10:1 2 13%
6 St Joseph School of Nursing 96.00 $$$$$ 11:1 2 50%
7 NHTI – Concord’s Community College 95.75 $$$$$ 12:1 1 22%
Rank School Name Score Tuition Student/Teacher ratio Program count Graduation Rate
1 University of New Hampshire 96.25 $$$$$ 19:1 2 76%
2 Saint Anselm College 96.25 $$$$$ 11:1 4 75%
3 Keene State College 96.00 $$$$$ 16:1 5 62%
4 Plymouth State University 96.00 $$$$$ 16:1 5 58%
5 Granite State College 95.75 $$$$$ 12:1 5 14%
6 Franklin Pierce University 95.50 $$$$$ 12:1 1 46%
7 Rivier University 95.25 $$$$$ 17:1 2 51%
8 Colby-Sawyer College 94.00 $$$$$ 13:1 5 50%
9 Southern New Hampshire University 93.50 $$$$$ 28:1 5 50%

Locating Nursing Schools in New Hampshire

In order to legally practice as a nurse in New Hampshire, or any other state, professionals must have an active state license. The New Hampshire Board of Nursing monitors and approves nursing education programs to ensure each licensee has successfully completed an accredited education and training program that includes both clinical experiences and classroom time. Admission to these nursing schools can be competitive.

According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, nursing schools in New Hampshire enrolled more than 2,000 undergraduate and graduate students in 2014, and produced 329 graduates across all degree levels. The search tool below can help prospective New Hampshire students locate a school to meet personal and professional needs.

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How to Obtain a Nursing License in NH

Aspiring nurses in New Hampshire must follow the guidelines of the New Hampshire Board of Nursing (NHBON) to earn a license and practice in the state. Advanced practice nurses are held to additional requirements that include earning an advanced degree. Below is a list of the requirements for registered nurses and advanced practice nurses as well as how and when to renew a license.


New Hampshire is a Nurse Licensure Compact state. As a result, if your primary state of residence is New Hampshire, you may apply for a multi-state license that is valid in all 25 states in the NLC. If New Hampshire (or another NLC state) is not your primary state of residence, you can apply for a single-state New Hampshire nursing license, which is valid only in New Hampshire. The licensure process includes:

  • Submitting an application for licensure and paying the initial application by examination fee of $120. Those submitting an application by endorsement are subject to the same $120 fee.
  • Completing a Board-recognized nursing program and requesting that official transcripts be sent directly to the Board of Nursing
  • Applying with Pearson VUE to take the NCLEX-RN exam and paying the required fee. Those who hold a current license in another state may apply for reciprocity by submitting written verification or online verification through Nursys
  • Completing a criminal background check, which includes FBI fingerprinting, no more than six months prior to completing all licensing requirements

NH License Renewal

New Hampshire nursing licenses need to be renewed every two years, before midnight of the nurse’s birthday. Reminders are sent about six weeks prior to the expiration date, so it’s important to keep contact information up-to-date with the Board of Nursing. Registered nurses need to complete 30 contact hours of continuing education during each two-year license cycle and 400 hours of active practice every four years. Those without the active practice time can supplement with a board-approved refresher program or take the NCLEX exam.

Requirements for Advanced Practice Licensure in NH

Advanced practice nurses work in specialized settings as nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, acute care nurses, pediatric nurses, and similar specialty fields. In addition to RN licensing requirements, APRNs must also take the following steps:

  • Complete and submit proof of a graduate degree or higher in the advance practice area where you’re seeking licensure
  • Earn certification from the specialty’s national organization
  • Pay the licensing fee

You can find more information about advanced practice licensing and renewal at the New Hampshire Board of Nursing.

Nursing Stats in New Hampshire: RNs & APRNs

The increasing need for nurses in New Hampshire is on target with the national average, as is the average salary, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It’s expected that some 500 job openings will be up for grabs each year from 2012 to 2025. And APRNs in specialty areas, such as midwives and nurse practitioners, can expect an even greater demand for services. Below, find out more about the salary and employment outlook for nurses in New Hampshire.

Top-Paying Areas for RNs in New Hampshire

Area Hourly Median Wage Annual Median Wage
Western New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area $33.74 $70,170
Manchester $32.15 $66,870
Portsmouth NH-ME $30.88 $64,220
Other New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area $30.10 $62,620
Nashua NH-MA NECTA Division $29.94 $62,270
Southwestern New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area $28.59 $59,460
Rochester-Dover NH-ME $28.45 $59,170
Northern New Hampshire nonmetropolitan area $27.46 $57,110

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014

New Hampshire vs. National Numbers

  • New Hampshire
  • National
  • Annual Salary (25th percentile)
  • Annual Salary (median)
  • Annual Salary (75th percentile)

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014

Total Employment (2014)
2022 occupational outlook
Avg. annual openings (2012 – 2022)

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014 and Projections Central

Resources for NH Nurses

Home Care Association of New Hampshire

The Home Care Association of New Hampshire is a nonprofit membership organization aiming to improve the quality of care provided by home health care agencies. Its members work with families and other health care providers to educate the public and connect families to community agencies.

New Hampshire Board of Nursing

The New Hampshire Board of Nursing is responsible for licensing nurses in the state and ensuring that anyone practicing has necessary continuing education and training to ensure the safety of the general public.

New Hampshire Nurse Practitioner Association

This non-profit professional advocacy group strives to improve patient access to quality health care services. It provides an arena for advanced practice nurses to network locally, nationally and internationally.

New Hampshire Nurses Association

In cooperation with the American Nurses Association, the New Hampshire Nurses Association offers education, advocacy and support for its membership.

New Hampshire Online Licensing

Nurses and other health care professionals can renew their licenses online using New Hampshire Online Licensing provided by the New Hampshire state government.