Master's-prepared RNs have another opportunity to advance their degrees through a new DNP program at Samuel Merritt University in Oakland, Calif.
The 36-credit online program started at the Oakland-based school in January to accommodate students who want to keep working in their practice settings while studying for their DNP, according to a news release. More advanced practice nursing jobs are requiring doctoral degrees, with the number of students enrolled in DNP programs increasing from 3,415 in 2008 to 5,165 in 2009, the news release stated.
"The DNP is aligned with our mission and goals," said Cecily Cosby, RN, PhD, professor and DNP director for SMU. "It coincides with the urgent need for healthcare reform and the Institute of Medicine's recommendation to maximally utilize the training and skills of nurses. It will allow us to better serve the community with nurses prepared for the challenges ahead."