3 Tips for Getting Your Nursing License in Another State

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Baltimore skyline at night with text "3 tips"

Getting your nursing license in another state can be equal parts exciting and nerve-wracking. However, there is no better place to work on your nursing skills and bedside manner than Charm City! Relocating to Baltimore for the Accelerated 2nd Degree Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) program at Notre Dame of Maryland University is a great move for your future — and we’ve got the three tips you need to make the most of your time here.

Relocating for nursing school

Relocating for nursing school requires thorough logistical planning, as where you earn your nursing degree can have a big effect on how well you do in your program.

If you’re someone who gets distracted easily, you might need a quiet, slower-paced environment to really focus on your studies. If you’re someone who needs lots of different things to do during downtime, you may be more at home in a city setting.

Luckily, Notre Dame of Maryland University offers a great blend of both. Our main campus, where you would attend labs and classes as a student enrolled in our Accelerated 2nd Degree ABSN program, is located in Baltimore. If you enroll in our Hybrid Accelerated 2nd Degree program, you would complete labs at our NDMU Elkridge Learning Site.

1. Find Housing

First, we recommend living somewhere that will serve you well during your time in our program.

You’ll likely need to find housing, preferably close to our Baltimore campus or NDMU Elkridge Learning Site, depending on which learning modality you choose to pursue for your accelerated nursing education. After all, we all have those days where we wake up late or just have a slow morning. Living close to class will help you be the best student you can be.

NDMU logo in hallway

There are a few great neighborhoods near the NDMU Elkridge Learning Site that make it easy to find a place to call home, including:

  • Columbia
  • Elkridge
  • Ellicott City
  • Ilchester
  • North Laurel

If you’re commuting, you’ll need to learn about public transport and traffic patterns. While it’s true you can complete your coursework for our hybrid accelerated second-degree BSN program online wherever is most convenient for you, you’ll still need to travel to attend your skills and simulation labs.

But don’t worry, no matter where you’re coming from, public transportation options are available to get you to and from labs.

Within the metro area, multiple commuter bus stops are within walking distance to our program site, as are a couple of metro train stations. Or, if you’re commuting by car from outside the city, the NDMU Elkridge Learning Site is accessible via Interstate 95, but keep in mind average commute times in Baltimore hover around 30 minutes.

Tips for family-friendly activities in the area

If you’re moving with your family, there are tons of family-friendly attractions to check out in Baltimore. Here are a few top-rated area attractions perfect for a day out with the family:

  • National Aquarium: Have some under-the-sea fun seeing a variety of fish, penguins, and other critters.
  • Ocean City Beach: Beach picnic anyone? Ocean City Beach is family-friendly and perfect for some fun in the sun.
  • Port Discovery Children’s Museum: You don’t have to be the only one learning in the family. Take the kids to Port Discovery for some interactive educational displays and installations.
  • Baltimore Orioles Baseball Game: No matter who you’re rooting for, a day at the field is sure to be a home run with the family.

2. Step out of your comfort zone by getting to know your cohort

Even if you’re moving with your family, it’s important to get to know your peers in the ABSN program. These will be the folks going through the same rigorous curriculum as you are, and they’ll be able to understand how you’re feeling, form study groups with you, and talk through concepts.

You’ll also likely lean on one another often —after all, you’re likely not the only one getting your nursing license in another state. Having friends and classmates to relate to and learn with can really take your ABSN experience to the next level and make the relocation process go more smoothly. With a good cohort, Maryland will feel like home in no time.

two nursing students in white lab coats

3. Get to know your new city

Now that you’ll have new people to go explore the city with when you’re not in labs or studying, you’ll be able to take in all it has to offer. Baltimore is an amazing city with amazing opportunity — and of course, amazing food. Because of its proximity to Chesapeake Bay, Baltimore offers the best in seafood, including fresh Maryland crab, oysters, lobster and much more. If seafood isn’t your thing, the city has a host of innovative restaurants and bars to choose from.

Baltimore has an eclectic, artsy culture that always has something new to share, but it’s also the perfect place to earn your BSN because it sets you up with the opportunity to enter a bustling health care hub.

Baltimore is known internationally for its medical advancement, making it a great place for those looking to work in the city’s growing health care sector — especially those with a BSN.

The city’s health care job market is booming, and will continue to grow as $3 billion has been invested in area hospital expansions, including:

  • Johns Hopkins Medical Campus
  • University of Maryland, Baltimore
  • Mercy Hospital Baltimore/Washington Medical Center
  • Upper Chesapeake Medical Center
  • St. Agnes

Because of these expansions, Baltimore has a growing need for nurses and specialty nurses, paving the way for graduates of our program to enter the field.

Relocating for nursing school is a big commitment, but it’s one that will pay off for your future. At Notre Dame University of Maryland, we are ready to help you transition to your path toward becoming a nurse and moving to Maryland.

Baltimore skyline

Maryland: A Nurse Licensure Compact State

Another reason to relocate to Maryland to start your nursing career? It was the first state to become a Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) state in 1999.

Why is that a benefit to you? If you graduate from the Notre Dame of Maryland University ABSN program, pass the NCLEX-RN exam and claim primary residency in Maryland, you can practice nursing in any of the 25 current NLC states with just one multistate license.

Relocating to an NLC state like Maryland is beneficial to nursing students because it:

  • Offers an affordable and easy way for qualified nurses to practice across state borders.
  • Empowers nurses to pursue travel nursing and legally practice in neighboring NLC states during natural disasters more readily.
  • Eliminates the hassle and fees required to obtain multiple state licenses.

If you’re ready to leverage all the benefits earning your nursing degree in Maryland can provide, the Notre Dame of Maryland University ABSN program might be right for you.

Are you ready to start accelerated nursing school?

Are you feeling more prepared about getting your nursing license in another state and excited about what Baltimore has to offer for your nursing future? Then you’re ready to begin your nursing journey at Notre Dame of Maryland University’s ABSN program. Contact us today to learn more about our accelerated BSN programs in Baltimore.