Objective This correlational longitudinal study examined levels and relationships of Learned Resourcefulness (LR), stressors, and academic performance in baccalaureate nursing students at a North Carolina university. Method Gadzella‘s Student-life Stress Inventory (SSI) and Rosenbaum’s Self-Control Scale (SCS) administered to 85 students in two groups upon admission and graduation. Results LR increased, while stress decreased significantly in both groups ( p < 0.05). Both groups (95.3% female, 85.8% Caucasian) reported similarly high frustration, pressure, and emotional reactions to stress. Significant relationship between taking tests and stress ( p < 0.01). Stressors ( p < 0.05) and age ( p < 0.01) significant predictors of academic performance. Significant correlations of LR and work status ( p < 0.01), and increased self-esteem ( p < 0.05). No significant relationships among LR, stressors, and academic performance. Conclusion Results validate high levels of stress and suggest that higher LR enhances coping skills and decreases stress longitudinally, which can improve academic performance and retention. Implications for International Audience Trends and relationships in stressors and LR should be explored internationally in larger, more diverse samples of college students in nursing and other majors in relation to depression, anxiety, health-related behaviors, demographics, and academic performance. LR can be assessed, taught, learned, and enhanced. Greater numbers of qualified, competent nursing graduates with stronger clinical judgment, coping, and problem-solving skills will address the critical global nursing shortage and improve the quality, safety, and access of health care worldwide.