Master’s in Nursing Programs in North Carolina
Your experience in the health care field may have given you an interest in leadership, direct patient care, or education. Whatever your future career goals may be, a Master’s degree in nursing may be the key to achieving them. There are several ways to earn your MSN in North Carolina, and we have outlined them here on RNtoMSN.com. Select those graduate nursing programs that interest you, and compare the important characteristics of each. Once you’ve narrowed your search, you can get information from schools by submitting a request directly from our website.
An MSN program contains 35 to 50 credits that build on a Bachelor’s degree in nursing. If you have an Associate’s degree in nursing or a Bachelor’s degree in a non-nursing field, you may need to take up to 30 additional credits to complete all degree requirements.
Your first semester in school may include courses like Theoretical Basis for Nursing Practice, Health Disparities and Nursing, and Research in Nursing. Nurse education programs often include courses like Curriculum Planning in Nursing and Instructional Technology in Nursing Education. A nursing administration degree may combine nursing courses with business courses. As a nurse practitioner student, you may take classes like Family Theory for Advanced Practice Nursing and Advanced Care of Adults.
You may be able to use local scholarships to lower your financial obligations during school. The North Carolina Foundation for Nursing awards a variety of scholarships to Master’s degree students. You can also look into the Nurse Scholars Program, which is part of the College Foundation of North Carolina. The American Legion awards the Colon Furr Scholarship to nursing students.
Working With Your MSN in North Carolina
There are many support structures in place for Master’s-level nurses in North Carolina. The North Carolina Action Coalition works to increase nurses’ scope of practice, improve nursing education standards, and facilitate collaboration between different types of health care practitioners.
One goal of the North Carolina Action Coalition is to increase the amount of nurses that can take on leadership roles. A Master’s degree in nurse leadership or administration may give you the unique blend of experience and leadership knowledge that you need to become a leader in your organization.
The North Carolina Foundation for Nursing uses their funds for the nurses of NC, and they offer several scholarships. North Carolina has several RN-MSN programs that are on campuses and online, allowing you to choose from a number of nursing careers.
The demand for nurse practitioners is also on the rise. North Carolina has many rural communities that lack physicians. As local groups push for greater practice rights for nurse practitioners, nurse practitioners in North Carolina may be able to serve rural communities. The North Carolina Office of Rural Health & Community Care offers loan repayment incentives and placement assistance to health care practitioners that are willing to work in rural areas.
One unique career is working in Health Care Systems as an Outcome Management. This position examines clinical outcomes, which might be in a hospital, for the Department of Health, in a surgical clinic or any number of health care facilities. The detailed information you would collect has a direct impact on the evolution and the restructuring of the US healthcare system. Annual income in North Carolina for this position is $92,810 (O*net,2014).
The Clinical Nurse Leader role is another popular career, which aims to improve the quality of healthcare overall, giving nurses the necessary tools to excel and improve patient care now and in the future as new technology is developed. As a CNL you may work in all types of healthcare facilities as a collaborative member of a healthcare team. CNLs in NC earned $66,640 annually (O*net, 2014), but this may not take into account some leadership roles.
If you want to advance your career, a graduate nursing degree may be the perfect answer for you. Contact the North Carolina schools listed below for more information.
Nursing Schools in North Carolina
What You Can Expect From Your MSN Program
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing lists several member schools in North Carolina as well as thousands of nursing students in graduate programs in the state. There are many new graduate programs available for nurses today, and getting your Master’s degree in Nursing in NC may allow you to position yourself in an expanded role that fits into your career goals and may increase your income.
Take some time to review the schools offering MSN degrees in North Carolina, then request program materials directly from our site to learn more.
There are several options for earning your Master’s of Science in Nursing in North Carolina, including both direct patient care and administrative routes of study. Some of the graduate nursing programs in NC include:
- Adult Cardiovascular Care Nurse Practitioner
- Adult Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
- Family Nurse Practitioner
- Clinical Research Management
- Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
- Nurse Educator
- Nursing Informatics
- Clinical Nurse Leader
- Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
- Nursing Case Management
- Nursing Gerontology
Admission to most of the nursing master’s degree programs in North Carolina requires many, if not all, of the following:
- Bachelor of Science in nursing from an accredited program
- Cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher
- Satisfactory completion of descriptive and inferential statistics
- Official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate education
- Three letters of recommendation that attest to the applicant’s academic ability, professional competency and personal character
- GRE within five years unless applicant has a cumulative GPA of 3.4 or higher
- Nursing experience (one year is recommended for most programs, additional experience is required for some programs)
- Personal statement
- Resume or curriculum vitae
- RN licensure in North Carolina
One of the most popular programs offered for graduate nursing students is the Pediatric Nurse Practitioner route, which prepares you to provide comprehensive healthcare to children of all ages. The program places emphasis on health maintenance, disease prevention, management of common and acute pediatric illnesses and behavioral issues. The program has 40+ credit hours and includes 600+ clinical hours for graduation.
The curriculum for core courses in this pediatric program reflects some of the routine MSN curriculum highlights and then culminates in the pediatric focus of the degree. Some of the typical courses include:
- Nurse as Scholar I, II: Science Development, Study Design and Statistics
- Population Health in a Global Society
- Professional Transitions: Advanced Nursing Practice
- Advanced Physiology Across The Lifespan
- Conceptual Basis of Advance Pathophysiology Across the Lifespan
- Specialty Seminars in Advance Pathophysiology for Neonatal and Pediatric Health
- Physical Assessment & Diagnostic Reasoning in APN
- Clinical Pharmacology for Advance Nursing Practice
- Advanced Practice Nursing: Pediatric Primary Care Essentials
- Advanced Practice Nursing and Primary Care Pediatric Patients I,I
- Advanced Practice Nursing and Primary Care Pediatric Patients I, II – Clinical
- Advance Practice Nursing in Primary Care Pediatric Patients Synthesis (includes Advance Practice Skills workshop)
Upon graduation you can take the credential exam for the Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner from the American Nurses Credentialing Center, which is considered to be a reliable assessment for your level of clinical knowledge and your skills as a nurse practitioner.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics in May 2013 list the Nurse Practitioner’s mean annual income of $95,070. Incomes depend upon your education, your credentials, your experience and your employer. Earning your graduate degree can result in increased autonomy and income, in several specialties.
There are several online MSN programs in North Carolina, including nurse practitioner programs. Before you apply to an institution, be sure to see what each one offers.
If you need help with tuition expenses, complete a FAFSA application, which is a Federal grant program. The U.S. government under the Health Resources and Services Administration also offers low interest loans, as well as, loan repayment programs. If nurses work in Critical Shortage Facilities for two years they can receive 60 perfect of their total qualifying nursing education loan.
The North Carolina Nurses Association also helps nursing students with scholarships for graduate degrees. They also have a Masters Nurse Scholarship Program for students with an average GPA of 3.2.
There are many opportunities in North Carolina for you to earn your MSN degree, which can give you a great deal of satisfaction while helping to bolster the profession of nursing overall. Reach out to the schools you find that offer Master’s in Nursing programs in NC to get started.
North Carolina RN to MSN Bridge Programs
North Carolina is known for the rural communities that make up much of its layout. As a result, nursing professionals play a very prominent role in North Carolina health care. Especially in areas where doctors are in short supply, nurses may provide patients with the education and basic care they need. The need for advanced nursing professionals is growing in this state, as nurse-midwife staffed birth centers pop up around the state. If you’re interested in becoming an advanced practice nurse, it may be time to look into RN-to-MSN programs in North Carolina.
You may need to meet a set of prerequisite requirements before you can be accepted to a North Carolina RN-to-MSN program. Since you do not yet have a BSN, you will likely need a history of strong grades and academic achievement at the Associate’s degree level. You may also need to have at least one year of nursing experience to qualify for an MSN program. Certain schools in North Carolina do require you to take the GRE.
Prior to starting courses in your chosen Master’s degree specialty, you must get to the same educational level as a nurse with a bachelor’s degree. That usually involves taking a short set of nursing courses like Improving Nursing Practice, Conceptual Bases of Professional Nursing Practice, and Community Health Nursing.
The courses you take as an MSN student are divided into several categories: professional courses, research courses, and clinical courses. Professional nursing courses include Health Care Policy, Advanced Practice Nursing Role, and Population Health & Epidemiology. Courses in the clinical path include Pathophysiology for Advanced Nursing Practice, Advanced Health Assessment, Diagnostic Reasoning in Primary Care, and Pharmacotherapeutics in Advanced Nursing Care. In the research part of your degree, you may take classes like Interpreting Research Reports and Translation of Nursing Evidence. The courses you take in each area may vary, depending on which nursing path you choose.
North Carolina is home to many large scholarship and grant funds for advanced nursing students. As you begin your financial aid search, you can look to nursing employers, government organizations, and nursing associations. The North Carolina Legion awards the Colon Furr Scholarship, which is worth $600 for selected nursing students. The Foundation for the Carolinas has many different scholarships, including the North Carolina League for Nursing Academic Scholarship. This scholarship is only available to graduate students. If you join the North Carolina Nurses Association, you may be able to apply for the scholarships awarded by the NC Foundation for Nursing.
Although nursing school is probably the biggest hurdle to clear in your new career, you’re still not able to begin practicing as an advanced practice nurse until you get your license from the North Carolina Board of Nursing. Nurse practitioners, nurse anesthetists, and clinical nurse specialists must register with the board to be able to carry out an expanded set of duties. As a nurse practitioner, you must also have a relationship with a supervising physician.
Across all advanced nursing professions, job growth rates in North Carolina tend to exceed the national average, reflecting the state’s dire need for highly-trained nursing personnel. Between 2012 and 2022, O*Net hopes to see a 23 percent increase in nurse anesthetist jobs. The best job outlook goes to nurse practitioners, who may see a 37 percent increase in jobs in this time frame (O*Net, 2012).
Nursing salaries vary quite a bit based on career choice, experience level, and seniority. Nursing instructors in North Carolina earn an average salary of $59,300 per year (O*Net, 2013). Nurse anesthetists tend to have significantly higher salaries; O*Net reports a median income of $147,800 per year.
No matter which nursing career you decide to pursue, you may find that an MSN opens many professional doors for you. In addition to working in your chosen specialty, you may become a leader in your local nursing community.
North Carolina Direct Entry MSN
America’s nursing shortage made headlines for the first time about a decade ago, leading health care advocates looking for new ways to attract nurses into the field. One innovative idea was the direct entry master’s program, designed for college graduates who decide to become nurses after majoring in a different subject as undergraduates. As these programs have gained popularity over the years, they have opened doors to many motivated adults who want to change careers.
If you decide to make the switch to nursing, a direct entry master’s program could offer you the training you need. The state of North Carolina is home to one of the nation‘s older accelerated programs of this kind – the “alternate entry” (AE) master’s degree at East Carolina University. The Greenville-based institution announced the graduate program back in 2004, heralding the creative effort as a great way to address the nursing shortage while offering a path for adult learners to enter the nursing profession. The program builds on your undergraduate strengths and supplements your studies with nursing instruction.
The East Carolina program has two phases: a pre-licensure program that prepares you to take the RN licensing examination and a second phase where you enroll in your clinical concentration. To be admitted to the AE program, you must meet most of the general master’s requirements, but you do not need a nursing degree or a RN license. You must have a bachelor’s degree in another field, a minimum 3.0 grade-point average as an undergraduate, three recommendations, and a personal interview. You also must have completed several prerequisite classes, including chemistry, anatomy, microbiology, human growth and development, statistics, ethics, and nutrition.
The program’s first phase, which begins only in the fall, is a full-time commitment. This portion of the program prepares you for advanced courses in nursing and gets you ready for the RN licensing exam. After you earn your RN license, you may begin taking clinical concentration courses for your MSN. East Carolina offers master’s degrees in adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialist, adult-gerontology family nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, nurse anesthesia, neonatal nurse practitioner, nurse education, and nursing leadership.
Paying for college is a worry for many students, but you can find several valuable resources in North Carolina. The North Carolina Foundation for Nurses offers information about several good options for graduate-level nurses at its website. These include:
- The Mary Lewis Wyche Fellowship is funded by fees from a First in Nursing license plate program. These fellowships offer $5000 annually for RNs who are pursuing full-time master’s or doctorate degrees in several fields.
- The Eunice M. Smith Scholarship is available to RNs who are studying on a part-time basis for their bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate degrees.
- The Master’s Nurse Scholars Program Graduate Program was created to reward outstanding nurses who are studying for a master’s degree. The annual award is $6000 for full-time study in a master’s program or half of that amount for part-time study.
After graduation, you can launch your specialized nursing career. A North Carolina RN can expect to receive an average annual salary of $59,290, according to a 2013 report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, an advanced degree can lead to even higher pay. For example, the average annual salary for North Carolina’s nurse practitioners in 2013 was $94,910. The state’s nurse midwives made a yearly average of $85,460, and nurse anesthetists made an annual average salary of $158,840.
The job forecast for new nurses continues to be promising. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of RN jobs is expected to increase about 19 percent through 2020 – a faster-than-average rate. That trend is due, in part, to growing demand for nurses to care for aging baby-boomers and newly insured patients. New nurses also will be needed to take the place of older nurses and nurse educators as they reach retirement age. The average age of North Carolina’s nursing faculty in 2013 was 53.
If you’re ready to begin your nursing path, request information from the schools listed on this site to find the best program for your lifestyle and career goals!
North Carolina CRNA Programs
If you are like most other nursing professionals, you got into this field because you wanted to make a difference in people’s lives and use your skills to help patients live healthier lives. Your work experience may have taken you into surgery, primary care, or various health care specialties. One of the main benefits of working in the field of nursing is the variety of ways you can advance your career. If you want to make an impact on the field of health care in North Carolina, it may be time to look into becoming a nurse anesthetist.
North Carolina is a state in which nurse anesthetic care is particularly important. This is mainly due to the makeup of North Carolina’s population, the majority of which live in a rural setting. Nurse anesthetists tend to be the main pain relief providers in rural areas, and in some areas, they offer nearly 100% of the anesthetic services provided to patients. Not only does this field give you the opportunity to give patients affordable and evidence-based care, it allows you to reach even more patients by dedicating yourself to work in a rural area.
Does nurse anesthesia sound like the field for you? If you want to find out what this nursing specialty can do for you and your career, request program materials from the schools on our site that offer CRNA programs in North Carolina.
Admissions and Curriculum for CRNA Programs in North Carolina
The journey to becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist begins with acceptance to a graduate program in nurse anesthesia, either a Master’s degree program or a doctoral degree program. As soon as you know that you’re interested in a career in this field, you may wish to plan ahead by studying the admissions requirements for local CRNA programs. A Bachelor’s degree in nursing is a requirement. Another expectation is that you obtain the proper type of work experience after graduation with a BSN. Critical care, emergency care, and trauma care may all be acceptable settings for your nursing work. At least one year of work is required.
Your CRNA program may help you meet several important learning outcomes. In the field of management, you may learn how to lead nurses at different levels of education and in different settings. Instructors may ensure that you can properly integrate nursing research into your clinical practice. In addition, your physical ability to administer various types of anesthesia may be tested in multiple ways.
Your curriculum should be designed to help you meet these learning goals. Your education may begin with courses like Anesthesia Concepts, Gross Anatomy for Nurse Anesthesia, Advanced Pharmacology in Nurse Anesthesia, and Research Methodology. Other courses in your curriculum may include Anesthesia and Co-Existing Disease, Advanced Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice, and Clinical Practicum. During your practicum courses, you may work with well over 550 patients to meet your clinical requirements. During this time, you can begin building a strong network of nurse anesthesia contacts.
After you get accepted to a graduate program of your choice, you may start looking into grants, scholarships, and student loan repayment plans. Make sure your search includes nursing organizations, health care employers, and government agencies. The North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority helps students with low interest loans that may be repaid through service in a rural area. The College Foundation, Inc. is another renowned resource for North Carolina students. You may apply for scholarships through the North Carolina Nurses Association.
Working as a Nurse Anesthetist in North Carolina
When you finish your education and have your Master’s degree in nurse anesthesia, you can start becoming a licensed nurse anesthetist. You must first register to take the certification exam through the National Board of Certification & Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists. Once you have proved that you meet their educational requirements and you pass the certification exam, you can officially earn the title of Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist. You can then fill out an advanced practice application and submit it to the North Carolina Board of Nursing. They may require you to submit your transcript and proof of your passing exam score.
After you have achieved national certification and North Carolina licensure, you can begin your career as an independent nurse anesthetist. Through 2022, job openings for nurse anesthetists in North Carolina may increase by 23 percent, according to O*Net. This growth may lead to nearly 100 new jobs per year (O*Net, 2012). Though salaries vary widely in this state, generally speaking, they are close to the national average. Per O*Net, the average salary earned by a nurse anesthetist is $147,800 per year.
It’s important to take advantage of professional opportunities as you start working as a nurse anesthetist. Doing so can help you build a network of professional contacts, give you access to continuing education opportunities that may advance your career, and help you keep up with changing care standards in North Carolina. Joining the North Carolina Association of Nurse Anesthetists may help you reach these goals.
This growing field may be the opportunity you’ve been looking for in your nursing career. To get started, contact CRNA schools in North Carolina to learn more about your options.
Clinical Nurse Leader Degrees in North Carolina
Whether you have worked at one facility or ten as a registered nurse, you have undoubtedly found that certain leaders are more effective than others. If a leader is out of touch with the realities of nursing, unable to properly direct care, or is inaccessible to staff members, it’s likely that staff morale will suffer.
If you find yourself encouraging new nurses, taking over when situations get hectic, and looking at patient problems in alternative ways, you may have exactly what it takes to become an efficient nurse leader in North Carolina.
This is an extremely important time for nurse leadership in this state. Nursing care providers are pushing for greater autonomy and more practice rights throughout North Carolina, and the consensus in the nursing community is that this goal may become reality during the next legislative session (Biz Journals, 2015). With nursing roles changing, leaders who can oversee care and work independently are essential.
Are you ready to explore your leadership potential and take your nursing career to the next level? Learn more by checking out our list of Master’s in nurse leadership programs in North Carolina below.
How Can I Become a Clinical Nurse Leader in North Carolina?
To become a Clinical Nurse Leader, you must follow a specific certification process, as this is a protected nursing title. First, you must choose a Master’s program that is certified by the AACN. These programs require approximately 35 credits in North Carolina. You may need to complete multiple clinical rotations, depending on which school you decide to attend. Most North Carolina programs involve the completion of a professional paper or thesis.
As you work toward graduation, get ready for courses like Advanced Assessment for Nurse Leaders, Interpreting Research Reports, Improving Outcomes, Nursing Leadership, Pharmacotherapeutics, and Pathophysiology. These classes prepare you for nurse leadership in many different ways.
Your main focus should be clinical practice, taking responsibility for patient care, creating clinical plans, and taking a variety of factors into mind when looking at patients’ cases. However, you may also delve into management theory, nursing research, and health policy. All schools that prepare you for Clinical Nurse Leadership certification must follow the curriculum guidelines of this title.
Throughout this time, it is crucial to keep your nursing license active through the North Carolina Board of Nursing. Renewal applications are due every two years by the last day of your birth month. During each renewal cycle, you must complete an approved learning plan.
When you graduate with a Master’s degree, you can register to take the CNL licensing exam through the AACN. When you earn the title of Clinical Nurse Leader, you have to renew it every five years to maintain it.
What Does a Clinical Nurse Leader Do?
Your primary responsibility as a Clinical Nurse Leader is to ensure that your patients receive the best care they possibly can. Health care changes on a near-constant basis, so this aspect of your career requires you to stay up-to-date on nursing policy and recommended procedures. With your extensive knowledge of evidence-based practice, you should be ready to change and create care plans based on the latest relevant research.
In addition, patient communication is very important. You may be one of your patients’ primary care providers, which means that you want them to feel educated and informed in regard to your decisions. This often means working with other care providers to integrate care across specialties.
According to the AACN, other aspects of CNL work include process evaluation, patient cohort research, team leadership, information management, and patient advocacy.
Clearly, working in nurse leadership means juggling many priorities and ensuring that nothing is forgotten. Learning how to function in this role may require some time, but joining a group like the North Carolina Organization for Nurse Leaders can shorten your learning curve and give you the chance to bounce ideas and challenges off of experienced nurse leaders.
If you are ready to find a new level of fulfillment in your career and improve the lives of patients all over North Carolina, it is time to make the move to nurse leadership.
Start comparing options by contacting graduate nurse leadership programs in North Carolina.
North Carolina Nursing Research Graduate Programs
North Carolina nurses are working hard to improve patient care as Clinical Research Nurses (CNRs), which are licensed by the state. The Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action is a joint initiative of the AARP and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation that awards nurses for outstanding achievement in research and patient care improvement. They gave a national award to an NC oncology nurse who launched a study to help prevent leukemia in young Hispanic migrant working men.
If you are interested in making a significant impact on health and nursing in North Carolina by earning your advanced nursing degree, contact the schools with research programs listed below to get program details.
The NC Campaign for Action celebrates nursing leadership and nursing research efforts that are aimed at improving health care, helping women who are victims of sexual assault, medically fragile children, neurologically impaired patients and low income women living in rural areas. With your graduate degree you can help expand these research priorities to include those you feel are important.
North Carolina nursing schools like Duke University are well known for their clinical trials and research. CNR nurses work in advanced nursing practice areas, and the National Association of Clinical Research Nurses recognizes their contribution in pharmacology, pathophysiology and physical/health assessment in the state.
North Carolina Graduate Degree Programs in Nursing Research
It is important to obtain information on accredited universities before enrolling to make sure you enter a program that meets your clinical goals. There are several NC Master’s and PhD programs, both on campus and online, so it is important to research them all to find the school that is right for you.
NC graduate research nursing program admission requirements usually include:
- Official transcripts from all attended colleges
- Letters of recommendation
- Some require GRE scores
- TOEFL exam if English is not your first language
Nursing research PhD programs prepare you as a strong scientist to conduct nursing research in several areas. Graduates primarily work in academic and research settings, with a focus on those areas of research that personally motivate you.
A Clinical Nurse Researcher (CNR) is a master or doctorate prepared Advanced Practice Nurse according to the National NC Nurse Association. A CNR in addition to being a clinical practice expert is also an educator, a researcher and a consultant who influences the three spears of practice, which includes patient care, nursing and systems.
There are multiple focus areas you can follow when it comes to graduate nursing programs, one of which is Clinical Mental Health. A degree in this area would likely have some of the following curriculum components:
The courses include:
- Professional and Ethical Issues
- Counseling Skills and Techniques
- Research and Program Evaluation
- Theories of Counseling
- Career Counseling and Development
- Lifespan Development
- Groups in Counseling
- Assessment Practice in Counseling
- Assessment Practices in Counseling
- Multicultural and Social Justice Counseling
Specialty areas and elective courses may include; The Clinical Mental Health Counselor, Diagnosis and Treatment Planning, Theory and Process of Family Counseling, Gender and Sexuality Issues in Counseling, Addictions Counseling and Crisis Intervention. You would then have the choice of two electives in the total credit hours are 60.
Keep in mind there are many different foci, and the best way to find the school that offers the research track you are interested in is to contact them all for program details.
The Role of Clinical Nurse Researchers in North Carolina
The goal of CNR nursing practice is to reduce hospital cost, length of stay, emergency visits, readmission rates, gain improvement in system management, increase patient satisfaction and reduce medical complications for hospitalized patients.
Following graduation you may test to become certification through the Society of Clinical Research Associates’ Certification Program. Members pay $395, and non-members pay $450 for this exam.
If you need financial assistance complete a FAFSA application, which is a federal grant and loan program based on your income. Duke University has an aid application, and the university will determine the amount you owe, while the remaining costs may be covered in the form of grants, work-study and some limited student loans. The Health Resources and Services Administration also has numerous loans and scholarship plans.
According to O*Net Online a Clinical Research Coordinator in North Carolina in 2014 earned an average annual income of $120,050.
Clinical Nurse Researchers are employed in hospitals, laboratories and universities. As a CSR you may advance your nursing career and you are helping the profession of nursing as a whole. This is an excellent time to continue your education with a graduate degree, and you can get started by contacting the schools here.
North Carolina Certified Nurse Midwife
When a woman goes through pregnancy, labor, and childbirth, it’s a transformative experience. Nowadays, women have more options than ever before. They may opt to pass on certain tests, use medications or pass on them during labor, and give birth in many different settings. In North Carolina, where women living in rural areas may not have quick access to hospitals, it’s extremely important for them to still see dedicated, highly-trained caregivers. If you become a certified nurse midwife, you can provide women of all ages with evidence-based health care.
To learn more about how to become a nurse midwife in North Carolina, contact the nursing schools listed below for program details.
Nurse midwives provide an important range of services in North Carolina. Nurses that work in birth centers, for example, may give women the benefits of homebirth with the safety of hospital birth. Nurse midwives may also attend homebirths, serve patients in a hospital setting, and provide well woman care. If you want to take your nursing education to the next level, take the next step and contact certified nurse midwife programs in North Carolina.
Becoming a Certified Nurse Midwife in North Carolina
Nurse midwifery programs in North Carolina are designed to build on your undergraduate-level nursing education and give you the skills you need to work independently as a care provider. Most CNM programs in this state last roughly two years, assuming that you have a bachelor’s degree in nursing. If you have a non-nursing bachelor’s degree, you may need to spend slightly more time in school to catch up on core nursing courses.
Your curriculum should include a variety of advanced practice nursing courses, courses that are specific to the advanced care of women, and clinical practice courses. Core advanced nursing courses include Advanced Concepts in Pharmacology, Health Care Ethics, Research Methods for Advanced Practice Nurses, and Advanced Concepts in Physiology & Pathophysiology.
Some of the nurse midwifery courses you may take include Introduction to Reproductive Care of Women, Primary Care of Women, Family Planning, and Labor & Delivery. Throughout the clinical work you complete, you may observe births, learn about complications, discover how to respond to birth complications, and build your patient communication skills.
Nursing scholarships are prevalent in North Carolina. Spending a few hours on scholarship research every year can help you save money. The North Carolina Foundation for Nursing awards graduate-level scholarships every year. You may also wish to apply for the Colon Furr Nursing Scholarship. Grants and scholarships are funded by the North Carolina League for Nursing.
Working as a Certified Nurse Midwife in North Carolina
Upon completing your degree, you can apply for national certification through the American Midwifery Certification Board. This process involves taking an advanced exam and providing proof of your educational credentials. To practice in North Carolina, you must get an advanced practice nursing license via the North Carolina Board of Nursing.
North Carolina has a promising job market for nurse midwives. O*Net expects a 28 percent increase in nurse midwife jobs between 2012 and 2022. The average salary for a nurse midwife in North Carolina is $85,700 per year (O*Net, 2013).
Becoming a nurse midwife can put you in a position to serve patients, change lives, and keep women safe during some of the most exciting parts of their lives. Get started today by contacting certified nurse midwife programs in North Carolina and discovering the next step.
North Carolina Clinical Nurse Specialist Programs
Clinical Nurse Specialists (CNS) are advanced practice registered nurses who have been trained at the graduate level to diagnose and treat illnesses in their area of expertise. The specialties include critical care, geriatrics, oncology, women’s health, pediatrics and psychiatric mental health.
The training also prepares the CNS to take on the roles of clinical consultant, educator, researcher, program planner and leader. In these roles and through partnerships with physicians, nursing staff and other colleagues, the Clinical Nurse Specialist contributes to the effective and efficient delivery of medical services.
Contact the schools in North Carolina with CNS programs listed below to learn more about entering this vital nursing role.
Becoming a Clinical Nurse Specialist in North Carolina
You can find accredited campus based programs for Certified Nurse Specialist in North Carolina. It generally takes about 45 semester hours and you can likely complete it in two years full-time, or three-and-a-half years part-time.
The following admission requirements typically apply to NC Clinical Nurse Specialist programs:
- Bachelor’s degree from a nationally accredited nursing program
- CGPA of 2.7 or higher; 3.0 in the nursing major
- Acceptable score on the Graduate Record Examination or the Miller Analogies Test
- Currently licensed as an RN in the North Carolina or a NCSBN-compact state
- A personal statement
- Three professional references, one of which must be from a healthcare provider who knows the applicant’s work
- Personal interview
- A statistics course with grade of C or better
- One year of current practice experience
The curriculum consists of 13 semester hours of Advanced Nursing core courses in theory, research and finance, 12 hours in the core courses that relate to your specialty focus and 18 hours in clinical courses. The cluster core courses include Human Physiology and Pathophysiology for Advanced Nursing Practice, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Health Assessment and Clinical Pharmacology. The clinical courses include three semesters of supervised on- site practicum by clinical preceptor.
If distance education better fits your situation, you might look at programs offered in schools outside of North Carolina. There are online CSN programs you can refer to which include accreditation information.
In exploring online nursing programs, be sure to check their state authorization lists to make sure that the school is authorized to enroll online nursing students from North Carolina. Also, most programs will require some on-campus meetings or Intensives which may involve travel to the designated campus. You should also see what arrangements they have made for practicum placements of distance students.
Upon completion of an accredited Clinical Nurse Specialist program, you will quality to sit for the certification exam given by American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC).
Working as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in North Carolina
CNSs are increasingly regarded as critical to the improved functioning of healthcare. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) reports that research shows a strong correlation between interventions by Clinical Nurse Specialists and safe, cost-effective patient care. There were also reports of increased patient satisfaction with nursing care, fewer complications with hospitalized patients and reduced frequency of emergency room visits. As a result, AACN has encouraged expanded use of Clinical Nurse Specialists in health care settings.
The American Journal of Medical Quality reported that there is expected a shortage of a million nurses in the nation by 2030, and North Carolina will be facing a shortage of 20,000. It is imperative, not only that more nurses be trained, but that nursing services be utilized more effectively. This is where the CSN can make a significant difference.
The North Carolina Board of Nursing announced that all Clinical Nurse Specialists must be recognized by the Board by July 1, 2015 to be able to practice as a CNS in North Carolina. Applicants must provide proof of completion of an MSN degree in Nursing and certification by a national credentialing body. This official action was necessitated by the proliferation of un-credentialed CNSs in the state; this in itself points to the shortage of CNSs in the state.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which maintains an employment database for the federal government, does not provide wage data for the category of Clinical Nurse Specialist. Registered nurse median salaries in 2014 are reported by O*net as $66,640 for the country as a whole and $66,200 for North Carolina. According to MIMNC.org Clinical Nurse Specialists can expect annual salaries of around $80,000; the highest paid CNSs earn about $120,920 and the lowest paid earn around $60,537.
Preparing yourself to be a Clinical Nurse Specialist can open up broad opportunities in the healthcare world. As a practicing nurse, you probably had experiences where you could see that better knowledge, communication, teamwork and coordination would have improved patient care in a hospital or medical center. As a Clinical Nurse Specialist, you would be able to bring about those changes and to take active part in improving patient care and in contributing to better healthcare for North Carolina residents.
Contact the North Carolina schools listed here to see what they can provide in getting you started on Certified Nurse Specialist training. With the Board of Nursing action on CNS recognition and the national call for more CNSs, more schools may be moving toward offering this specialty in their MSN programs.
North Carolina Public Health Nursing Graduate Programs
Public health nurses strive to improve the quality, comprehensiveness and continuity of public health nursing care for the community at large. Establishing effective communication between local public health care agencies supports the professional status of the nurses in North Carolina according to the North Carolina Association of Public Nurse Administrators.
Public health nurses educate the public concerning preventative care, treatments of disease, and they work with the public to educate them on healthy living choices.
Many public health nurses belong to the North Carolina Public Health Association, which provides them with many benefits. They have a registered lobbyist in the NC General Assembly, and they network and collaborate with other public healthcare professionals. They provide continuing education, and they promote programs or projects that benefit the public health of North Carolina citizens.
If you choose to get your master’s degree in public health, you will likely have a choice of multiple healthcare settings and may find yourself in an expanded role.
Master’s Degree Programs in Public Health Nursing in NC
There are several universities in North Carolina that offer graduate nursing degrees in public health. Most of the universities’ application requirements include all transcripts from previous college education, test scores, three letters of recommendation, letter of intent and your resume.
It usually requires around 45 semester credit hours to earn a master’s degree in public health. Core courses equal 24 credit hours, concentration–specific courses equal nine credit hours, capstone courses (Internship & Professional paper I/II) equals six credit hours and electives equal six credit hours.
The core courses of an MPH program may include:
- Public Health Practice
- Ethics and Law and Public Health
- Disciplinary Rural Health
- Fundamentals of Environmental Health
- Introduction to Epidemiology
- Research Methods
- Behavioral Sciences and Health Education
- Biostatistics for Health Professionals I
There is a large selection of electives that are pertinent to public health care.
There are many federal grants and loans available, such as, the Federal Perkins Loan, the Federal Direct Parent Loan Program and the Federal Work–Study Program. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing has a webpage with a long list of financial resources for your education.
If you are ready to get your graduate degree, there are many resources available to help you fund your education.
The Role of Public Health Nurses in North Carolina
According to O*Net Online, the median annual wages for 2014 were $92,810. The job growth is expected to be 22 percent higher than job growth in other professions, and there is a projected job opening of 149,900 at this time
There are a variety of careers in public health, which include health educators, injury control and prevention specialist, infection control specialists, nurse practitioners, nurse midwives, family planning and reproductive health specialist, emergency management specialist and health planners.
There are abundant opportunities for your public health nursing career if you choose to earn your graduate degree. Contact the North Carolina nursing schools listed here to get started.
Graduate Nursing Programs in Healthcare Policy in North Carolina
Many states stand to gain quite a bit from new federal healthcare policies, and North Carolina is at the top of the list. Because of its high rate of poverty and its largely rural population, North Carolina has struggled to improve health outcomes for many years.
However, in 2015, North Carolina improved their public health ranking more than any other state in the country (Mountain Xpress, 2015). This success is the result of collaborative work between various agencies and groups. Areas of improvement include physical inactivity rates, childhood vaccination rates, and excessive alcohol use rates.
Clearly, the creation of policies that are tailored to a community’s specific needs can have great benefits. By continuing to focus on healthcare policy, North Carolina may improve even more in coming years. As a nurse, you can bring valuable insight to the table.
If you want to learn about the opportunities of a career in healthcare policy, reach out to Master’s in healthcare policy programs in North Carolina.
Master’s Degree Programs in Healthcare Policy in North Carolina
When you decide to devote your nursing career to health policy, you are expected to take on many significant goals and responsibilities as part of your career. As you compare schools in North Carolina, look at their areas of competency and learning outcomes. They show you what you are expected to learn and accomplish if you plan on succeeding in healthcare policy.
North Carolina programs may empower you by teaching you how to improve health for residents by creating evidence-based policies and practices, educating health leaders, and implementing policies that give residents access to the care they need to remain healthy.
Throughout your career as a nurse leader, you may work in many different specialties related to health policy. To be ready for these challenges, you may need to take courses like:
- Health Economics
- Foundations of Healthcare Financial Management
- Health Services Systems
- Policy Issues in Health Services Delivery
- Health Policy and Management
- Statistical Methods for Health Policy Management
- Readings in Health Policy and Management
- Program Evaluation
Each school sets their own expectations for practical experience and workplace training. Several programs offer supervised professional training or require the completion of a capstone course in your last semester. Use these opportunities to build professional connections and learn about healthcare concerns in the state of North Carolina.
To continue working as a registered nurse with background in health policy, keep your license valid through the North Carolina Board of Nursing. License renewal is required every two years by the last day of your birth month.
How Do Nurses Impact Healthcare Policy in North Carolina?
While completing your education and working as a nurse, consider getting involved with nursing policy and advocacy groups to start building your experience in healthcare policy. Doing this also allows you to see the huge impact that nurses have in policy creation. The North Carolina Nurses Association has pushed bills that increase the amount of school nurses in the state, allow the Board of Nursing to maintain its autonomy, give RNs the freedom to work in their full scope of practice, and implement an APRN consensus model.
In addition, you may want to work with different government agencies and divisions during your career. The North Carolina Division of Public Health plays a significant role in the creation and funding of healthcare laws.
Healthcare, as a field, is growing. Take advantage of this opportunity by contacting Master’s in healthcare policy programs in North Carolina.