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Clinical Nurse Leader Degrees in New York

New York has a strong, multifaceted healthcare industry that has served as a model for many other New England states. Throughout the state, there are rural, suburban, and metropolitan communities that have vastly different care needs. Nurses like you have navigated growth in the state to successfully meet these needs.

However, the demand for managers, supervisors, and leaders in health care is growing. In fact, many facilities are now running first-line management training programs for nurses in order to put great nurses into leadership positions (Penfield Post, 2015).

Nurse leaders are often at the forefront of industrywide change. Technology has taken on an increasingly important role in nursing over the years, and new students are now being trained on technology-based care (UB Reporter, 2015). With this shift, many facilities need nurses who can work independently in clinical settings.

If you find yourself jumping into a leadership role in your nursing career, why not take it even further? Reach out to graduate nursing leadership programs in New York.

How Can I Become a Clinical Nurse Leader in New York?

The journey to becoming a nurse leader starts with your education. If you have a Bachelor’s degree in nursing, you may be well on your way to starting a Master’s program in Clinical Nurse Leadership. If you have an unrelated Bachelor’s degree or an Associate’s degree in nursing, you may enroll in an accelerated MSN program or an RN to MSN program to bridge the gaps in your education.

Some New York programs have nursing practice requirements, ranging from one to three years of required nursing work experience. Since this role puts you in a leadership position in the nursing community, you must prove that you are up to the challenge. Schools expect to see a history of strong academic performance.

When you begin your education, plan on spending about two years in school to earn 33 to 36 credits. Most of these credits come from classroom courses, but you may also enroll in research or clinical courses.

Commonly required CNL courses in New York include Contemporary Issues in Nursing, Health Problems and Issues in Society, Ethics for Health Care Professionals, Legal Issues in Health Care Organizations, Leadership and Management in Health Care Organizations, Administration of a Nursing Organization, and Methods of Experimental Research.

To enrich your education and prove that you are ready to get into the field of leadership, you may be required to complete a capstone project. This typically involves developing research, clinical plans, and policy ideas for an area of study that interests you. You may work closely with area experts in the creation of your project.

Throughout this time, do not forget to maintain your New York RN license. CNL certification requires a current registered nursing license. The New York State Education Department requires you to renew your license every three years. Every four years, you must complete three hours of infection control training and two hours of child abuse prevention training.

After graduating with your Master’s degree, you can apply for CNL certification through the AACN. They administer a thorough three-hour nurse leadership exam—a passing score earns you your certification. Every five years, you must complete 50 hours of continuing education and renew your certification.

What Does a Clinical Nurse Leader Do?

The role of nurse leader varies between institutions. In some places, it may be focused entirely on clinical work. In others, you may spend an equal amount of time on clinical work and administrative work. Regardless, being a Clinical Nurse Leader means staying directly involved in clinical work. You may even lead patient care plans by using the latest research and evidence.

Communication is a huge part of nurse leadership. You must maintain strong work connections with other registered nurses, communicate well with other healthcare providers in your place of employment, keep your patients comfortable, and keep the lines of communication open with their families.

As is the case in any nursing career, community involvement is crucial. By joining a group like the New York Organization of Nurse Executives and Leaders, you can stay involved in the nursing community and start building a professional reputation for yourself as a CNL.
Ready to explore your full potential as a nurse?

Learn more about what it takes now by comparing nurse leadership graduate programs in New York.

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