Please note: Pomona College does not offer a Nursing program. This information is merely for the purpose of providing an overview of a nursing career and academic requirements to our undergraduate students.

Nurses are the frontline to primary patient care. Nursing can be described as both an art and a science; a heart and a mind. At its heart, lies a fundamental respect for human dignity and an intuition for a patient’s needs.

Nursing is one of the most flexible health careers. Nurses can practice in a variety of specialties and settings, and at several different levels, from nursing assistant roles through doctorate level practitioners who can diagnose, prescribe, and treat patients directly.

There are many different careers and levels of education for someone wishing to pursue a nursing degree. Pomona College does not offer a traditional four-year undergraduate nursing degree, instead, Pomona graduates will often pursue accelerated bachelor’s or master’s degree programs. Prehealth Advising is here to contribute to your success with guidance during your college years and the time of your application to nursing programs.

Training to become a Nurse

There are numerous career paths into nursing. Most students with a BA will consider Master’s level programs, such as Nurse Practitioners. To find out about different nursing careers, spend some time looking at these suggested websites: Nurse Journal, Nursing CAS, and Explore Health Careers.

Tuition to nursing programs varies widely depending on whether the school is public or private and the length of degree.

Undergraduate Preparation

Academic Preparation

As with all prehealth professions, you will want to start with basic sciences (biology and chemistry). Nursing programs also require many courses not taught at Pomona College, such as human anatomy and microbiology. Start preparing early so you can take courses at Keck Science, at another university over summers, or online.

Check out our pre-nursing planning guide.

Personal Preparation

In addition to strong academics, applicants need to demonstrate personal qualities that reflect their commitment to and suitability for a career in nursing. At Pomona College, we encourage students to find something they are passionate about – community service, clubs, athletics, etc., and through their experiences show their commitment, competence, purpose, and growth.

Shadowing: Shadowing a nurse gives pre-nursing students the opportunity to see what it is really like to be in this hard-working medical profession. If you know what kind of nursing you are interested in, it might be helpful to look for an opportunity with a nurse in that specialty. However, make sure you explore other options within the nursing and medical field so that you can decide if nursing or medicine is the right career for you.

Application Process

Admissions Testing

Required tests may include: ATI TEAS, HESI A1, GRE. Check the programs you are applying to for further information.

The 2021 cost of the GRE Exam is $205. There is a GRE Fee Reduction Program for individuals who can demonstrate financial need, for those who are unemployed and receiving unemployment compensation, and for national programs that work with underrepresented groups. A GRE Fee Reduction Voucher may be used for one GRE® General Test and/or one GRE® Subject Test. Voucher users pay 50% of the regular test fee.


Many nursing programs use the Nursing Central Application Service (CAS) to submit applications, others require individual applications. The CAS opens in August of each year for intended entry the following fall. Some programs admit on a rolling basis, so the earlier you apply, the more likely you are to get in; other programs begin reviewing applications after their deadline. Refer to individual program websites to time your application appropriately.

More Resources

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