Minnesota State and the University of Minnesota are leading a collaboration to reimagine nursing education and address the growing shortage of nurses in Minnesota. The Center for Nursing Equity and Excellence (CNEE) works with every school of nursing in the state, health care providers and others invested in improving health care in Minnesota. Our aim is to achieve excellence in nursing care and health equity by retaining nurses, increasing enrollment and graduation in nurse education programs at all degree levels, expanding equity in the nursing workforce, and increasing the success of nursing students.



  • Employers cannot find enough nurses.
  • Nursing programs cannot find enough faculty.
  • Healthcare systems are paying top dollar for nurses, taking away funds for increasing care.
  • Nursing workforce lacks diversity which is contributing to health inequities.
  • Clinical sites cannot take more students, barring increases in program enrollment.

Nursing workforce is in dire need

▪ There are not enough clinical learning opportunities to raise enrollment levels.

▪ There are not enough nursing faculty to raise enrollment levels.

▪ There is not enough simulation capability to raise enrollment levels.

▪ There are not enough qualified students to raise enrollment levels.


Predicted demand
growth for RNs annually


Annual decline in
new graduate Practical Nurses averaged 2018-2023


Minnesota has 75k fewer
workers since the pandemic


Healthcare openings increased
by 37%, 2019 to 2021

Education Providers

Alexandria Technical & Community College

Anoka Technical College

Anoka-Ramsey Community College

Augsburg University

Bemidji State University

Bethany Lutheran College 

Bethel University

Central Lakes College

Century Community College

College of St. Benedict/St. John’s University

College of St. Scholastica

Concordia College

Concordia University, St. Paul

Crown College

Dakota County Technical College

Fond du Lac Tribal & Community College

Gustavus Adolphus College

Hennepin Technical College

Herzing University

Inver Hills Community College

Lake Superior College

Metropolitan State University

Minneapolis College

Minnesota North College

Minnesota State College Southeast

Minnesota State University, Moorhead

Minnesota State University, Mankato

Minnesota State Community & Technical College

Minnesota West Community & Technical College

Normandale Community College

North Hennepin Community College

Northland Community & Technical College

Northwest Technical College – Bemidji

Pine Technical & Community College

Ridgewater College

Riverland Community College

Rochester Community & Technical College

Saint Paul College

South Central College

St. Catherine University

St. Cloud State University

St. Cloud Technical & Community College

St. Mary’s University of Minnesota

St. Olaf College

University of Minnesota

University of Northwestern – St. Paul

University of St. Thomas

Walden University

Winona State University

Strategic Partners

American Organization for Nursing Leadership

Associate and Practical Nursing Program Directors

Association of Nigerian Nurses in Minnesota

BlueCross BlueShield – Minnesota

Care Providers of Minnesota

Center for Flourishing Healthcare Communities

Children’s Minnesota

Essentia Health

Fairview Health Services

Gundersen Health System

LeadingAge Minnesota

Mayo Clinic Health System

Minnesota Association of Colleges of Nursing (MACN)

Minnesota Black Nurses Association

Minnesota Board of Nursing

Minnesota Home Care Association

Minnesota Hospital Association

Minnesota Organization of Leaders in Nursing

Minnesota Organization of Registered Nurses

Organization for Associate Degree Nursing

Presbyterian Homes

Sanford Health

The Minnesota State HealthForce Center of Excellence

The State of Minnesota Governor’s Workforce Development Board

Sample of Stakeholders Connected to Center