The most important thing about selecting one is that the courses and the degree completion program has to be CHED accredited if you’re going pursue a career in the United States. CHED stands for “Commission on Higher Education” in the Philippines.
Yes, there are some nursing schools that aren’t accredited, for whatever reason. It’s best to investigate any particular school before enrolling.
Your investigation shouldn’t end there, however, because there are other things to consider.
The first cost to consider is enrollment. The prices vary depending on where the school is located and how much of the school’s resources are dedicated to nursing students.
Compared to the costs associated with nursing schools in the United States, the tuition fees and everything else you may have to pay for will amaze you. One semester in the United States will cost more than four years of college in the Philippines.
I write from experience. I put my younger son, Jon, through college at a nursing school in the Philippines and the most expensive semester was around 24,000 pesos (or around $575.00 in US dollars based on the foreign currency exchange rate back then). He graduated in 2011.
This is a gotcha you can’t overlook. The nursing boards of each state have different, yet similar, requirements. The one requirement that’s the same regardless of the state is that the credits have to be converted by a recognized institution. Here’s four of them:
Each institution charges $300+ for each set of transcripts. Also, the transcripts must come directly from the school. You will need someone in the Philippines, who you can trust, to make sure the transcripts get mailed. Using Federal Express may be more expensive than regular postal mail, but regular postal mail often gets lost or delayed for long periods.
I know people who’ve attended a nursing school in Olongapo City and others who’ve attending a nursing school at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone (which is right next to Olongapo City).
Jon went to George Dewey Medical College, which started out as “Global City Innovative College”. It changed names again recently to “Manila Times College of Subic”. The school is at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone, in the area of Cubi Point where the US naval hospital used to be.
The college I know about in Olongapo City is “Gordon College”. It’s a much older building and it probably costs half of what George Dewey charges. It’s also easier to get to from anywhere in the city. If I had to do it all over again, I would have sent Jon to that school. As I understand recent developments, it’s being moved soon to make way for a new shopping mall.
There are probably other colleges with nursing courses here that I don’t know about. I don’t actively look for any when I’m out and about.
The first hurdle to get over is being able to go to the United States. This isn’t an issue for people coming from the United States to begin with. It also doesn’t affect dual citizens.
Most Filipinos going to nursing schools in the Philippines will end up working in the Philippines, once they pass the board exam in Manila. A few will find a way to get to the United States and go through the licensing ordeal there.
Originally published in March of 2014. Updated for January of 2017.