State Authorization

The U.S. Department of Education requires institutions offering distance education programs to acquire authorization from the states in which it operates. Specific regulations vary from state to state.

Rush University has been approved by Illinois to participate in the National Council for State Authorization and Reciprocity Agreements. NC-SARA is a voluntary, regional approach to state oversight of postsecondary distance education. As a participating ‌institution, Rush University may offer online programming to students in other SARA member states without seeking authorization in that state.

All states EXCEPT California are currently authorized as SARA member states. 

Additional information regarding SARA can be found at NC-SARA.

Professional Licensure

Through ongoing monitoring; Rush University has determined that the College of Nursing programs meet the educational requirements for professional licensure in most states (see state specific information below).  This does not apply to students seeking Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) certification/licensure in New Hampshire or Washington, since these states do not recognize the CNS role.

Please note: If you are considering an online academic program that leads to a professional license, it is highly recommended that you contact the appropriate licensing agency where you plan to receive instruction before beginning your academic program. SARA does not provide reciprocity of state professional licensing requirements. Academic programs and individual graduates must meet standards set by that state’s licensure requirements in order for a graduate to be eligible for a license. 

State Specific Information

State Boards of Nursing have specific regulations, varying from state to state, concerning clinical placement of nursing students enrolled in out of state institutions. As such, Rush University College of Nursing is prohibited from offering certain online programs to applicants/potential students residing in certain states.

We are unable to offer enrollment into our online programs to residents of the following states:

  • Louisiana
  • Tennessee

We are unable to offer enrollment into our advanced practice (APRN) specialty online programs to residents of the following states:

  • New York

Students who relocate, after enrollment to a Rush University College of Nursing program, are subject to the regulations of their current resident state, which may include restrictions from completing the clinical requirements of their program.

Complaint Procedures

The complaint process should begin with the institution.  If the complaint is not satisfactorily resolved at the institutional level, the student may appeal to the Institution’s SARA State Portal Entity listed below: 

Nkechi Onwuameze, PhD
Assistant Director for Academic Affairs
Illinois SARA Coordinator
Illinois Board of Higher Education
1 N. Old State Capitol Plaza, Suite 333
Springfield, Illinois 62701-1377
217.557.7382
sara@ibhe.org