At SVSU, the NEW Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree will prepare registered nurses with their BSN to practice after certification and licensure as a family nurse practitioner (FNP). It also is an advanced degree for existing family nurse practitioners to prepare them to practice in a complex health care system.
In 2004, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) voted to move the current level of preparation necessary for advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), including Nurse Practitioners, from the master’s degree to the doctorate-level by the year 2015.
As a result, SVSU developed the DNP curricula to build upon the traditional master’s program by providing education in evidence-based practice, quality improvement, and systems leadership, among other key areas.
The DNP is designed for nurses seeking a terminal degree in nursing practice and will offer an alternative to research-focused doctoral programs. The DNP-prepared nurses are well-equipped to fully implement the science developed by nurse researchers prepared in PhD, DNSc, and other research-focused nursing doctorates.
The SVSU DNP program will be available to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) and Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Certified Family Nurse Practitioners.
The DNP program was designed in accordance with national standards and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s Essentials for Doctoral Education for Advanced Practice Nurses and the competencies identified by the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties (NONPF). Further consideration for development of the program included current and projected regional, state, and national needs for increased numbers of primary care providers.
Saginaw Valley State University has awarded Master of Science in Nursing degrees to 102 Nurse Practitioner (NP) students since 1998. In the last five years, 100% of those graduates have been successful in the Family Nurse Practitioner certification exam.
The DNP program is designed as a part-time, two courses per semester, program of study offered on a year-round basis. The first year of the program consists of core courses shared with the master's curriculum. All classes are scheduled back to back, hence, when in-class instruction is planned, students have the convenience of attending campus only 1 day per week. SVSU graduate nursing programs are offered in a hybrid learning environment, a combination of in-class and on-line. This blended delivery method is preferred by students allowing them face to face instruction without the demand of attending each week.
This program will also provide an emphasis on rural healthcare with at least one clinical rotation within a clinical rural health care setting. Such sites might include locations within Alpena, Gladwin, Standish or Caro, Michigan among others.
The new Health & Human Services building constructed in 2010 provides over 90,000 square feet state of the art laboratories, simulation areas, high tech educational rooms, and computer facilities to enhance learning. The Department of Nursing has two separate intensive care unit labs, in addition to, acute care and home care simulated environments. These labs have three high fidelity mannequins (adult, infant, and child).
DNP students will also be eligible to complete a certificate program in nursing education by completing the three required nursing education courses thus qualifying them to teach, in addition to, practicing clinically.
Upon completion of the FNP program, SVSU graduates are eligible to apply for Nurse Practitioner Certification through the American Nurses Credentialing Center and the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners.
All SVSU programs in Nursing are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). For further information, please visit www.aacn.nche.edu or call 202-887-6791. In 2005, the self-study and site visit occurred for accreditation renewal. Approval was received from CCNE for the maximum ten years with no recommendations.
Approval for the DNP program has been submitted to the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). For further information please visit http://www.ncahlc.org or call 1-800-621-7440.