Master’s in Nursing Schools in Virginia
If you’re currently working as a nurse, you may be wondering how you can expand your career options to include leadership, advanced patient care, or education roles. Whether you have a Associate’s degree or Bachelor’s degree in nursing, you may be a good candidate for a Master’s degree in nursing. If you are ready to earn your MSN, Virginia nursing schools have several options to choose from. Once you have found programs that interest you, request information from schools to get additional details to help you make a decision.
Master’s programs in nursing tend to be very flexible, as administrators are aware that many students continue to work as nurses while attending school. This can be a big benefit of returning to school—you may not need to lose your income source or stop gaining experience while earning your degree.
Nursing Degrees in Virginia
Most Master’s-level nursing programs offer a wide variety of nursing classes, permitting you to get a well-rounded nursing education in several different fields. These courses may include Advanced Nursing Practice, Policy and Systems for Advanced Nursing Practice, and Evidence-Based Nursing.
In a direct care specialty, like nurse practitioner or nurse anesthesia, you may take a mix of clinical and classroom courses. Commonly required classes include Common Health Problems of Adults, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention in Adults, and Primary Care of Families. Programs require between 550 and 900 clinical hours.
The nursing leadership specialty requires significantly less clinical work—most programs include fewer than 300 hours. Courses in this program may include Nurses as Organizational Leaders, Application of Financial Concepts, and Integrative Administrative Systems.
With the amount of nursing scholarships available in Virginia, you may be able to significantly reduce your out-of-pocket costs. The Virginia Department of Health funds a number of scholarships for graduate-level nursing students. You can also look at scholarships offered by the Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority. The Virginia Nursing Students’ Association offers three scholarships every year.
Working With Your MSN in Virginia
Virginia is currently experiencing a primary health care shortage. Over 25% of the population does not have access to a primary care physician. Local groups like the Virginia Action Coalition are currently trying to expand the scope of practice for advanced practice nurses. As a nurse practitioner or other advanced practice nurse, you may be able to work in an underserved area of the state. This can help you contribute to the state’s reputation for health care quality; the Citizen-Times reports that several health care facilities throughout the state rank at the top of national patient satisfaction rankings.
There are many state programs that offer education assistance to veterans and others pursuing in-demand occupations. The Virginia VA Program notes that registered nurses are in extremely high demand. As the state continues to fund program that increase the amount of nursing students, many colleges may need nurse educators to handle the influx of students.
Virginia is an eastern state that offers many opportunities for nurses. Nurses who have earned their masters degrees will have greater employment opportunities, including the ability to work as a clinical nurse specialist or a nurse midwife.
Working as a clinical nurse specialist, you will work in collaboration with other members of the healthcare team to provide better outcomes for healthcare departments and for patients. As a clinical nurse specialist in the state of Virginia, you have the potential to earn an annual salary of around $62,600, based on 2014 median annual salary data (O*Net, 2015). The demand for clinical nurse specialists in this state is expected to grow by 13 percent between 2012 and 2022 (O*Net, 2015).
Nurse midwives provide pre-pregnancy, prenatal, intrapartum, postpartum care, and newborn to women of childbearing age. As a nurse midwife in Virginia, you have the potential to make $88,400, based on 2014 median annual salary figures for this state (O*Net, 2015). There is an expected growth rate of 27 percent for nurse midwives in Virginia between 2012 and 2022 (O*Net, 2015).
To learn more about either of these careers or to get started on your MSN degree, contact any of the schools listed here.
What You Can Expect From Your MSN Program
If you’ve been working as a nurse in Virginia for any amount of time, you know how incredibly important your services and skills are. Virginia is one of the states that desperately needs high-quality nursing care. The state’s many poor rural areas are medically underserved, leading to a population that is less healthy than it should be. If you are interested in making even more of an impact in Virginia’s health care industry, earning your MSN may be a great way to do so, while also improving your skills and preparing you to take on more responsibility as a nursing professional.
Left unchecked, health care in Virginia may get worse in the next several years. The Times Dispatch notes that the state has a prominent primary care physician shortage. The vast majority of clinics in the state have openings, and employers have a hard time filling them. If you earn an MSN and become a nurse practitioner, you may be able to have a positive effect, bridging the gap in regards to the shortage. As a primary care practitioner, you can help ensure that patients in your area get timely and affordable care.
One major benefit of working in the nursing field is the huge variety of professional resources available to you. The Virginia Organization of Nurse Executives and Leaders advocates for those who work in nurse management, administration, or leadership. The Virginia Association of Nurse Anesthetists is the state’s largest organization for nurse anesthesia professionals. If you’re considering a career in primary care, you can join the Virginia Council of Nurse Practitioners.
CareerInfoNet reports that many graduate-level nursing careers are growing quickly in Virginia. Through 2022, their estimates indicate employment increase of 38 percent or more in various nursing professions (CareerInfoNet, 2012).
It’s important to start planning for your graduate nursing degree in VA as soon as you know you’re interested in one. Many programs have fairly strict admissions requirements, so you need to give yourself enough time to satisfy any unmet requirements. Work experience is a major part of MSN admissions; most Virginia nursing schools require at least one year of full-time nursing experience, and some require even more. You may also need to demonstrate academic success during your BSN. Schools may require GPAs of 3.0 or higher. You may need to pass the GRE to be eligible for acceptance.
Once you’ve been accepted to one of the Virginia MSN programs of your choice, you can start taking core graduate-level nursing courses. These classes are required regardless of your area of concentration, since you need a broad understanding of all areas of advanced nursing. Advanced Pathophysiology, Epidemiology in Health Care, Advanced Pharmacology, and Research & Biostatistical Processes are all core courses in Virginia master’s in nursing programs.
The Virginia Board of Nursing sets licensing requirements for advanced practice nurses in Virginia. As long as you attend an accredited school, you should be able to get enough credits and clinical hours to be eligible for advanced licensure in Virginia. The Board also administers exams that are necessary for licensure.
Virginia is home to a great selection of scholarship programs, grant programs, and other types of financial aid that may make education more affordable for MSN students. The Virginia Nursing Students Association awards three different nursing scholarships each year. The Nursing Student Scholarship Program is sponsored by the Virginia Hospital Center. Each scholarship is worth up to $5,000. The Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority offers several grants and scholarships, including the Virginia Nurse Practitioner/Nurse Midwife Scholarship and the Virginia Nurse Educator Scholarship.
Job growth rates throughout the state tend to be fairly promising! Between 2012 and 2022, O*Net expects job openings for medical managers to increase by 21 percent. Throughout this time period, they anticipate a 42 percent increase in job openings for nursing instructors (O*Net, 2012). Growth rates for other nursing professions fall between these two extremes.
Going into advanced nursing may also increase your earning potential, especially since Virginia nursing salaries tend to be in line with national averages. In this state, O*Net reports that nursing instructors earn a average salary of $62,300 per year. On the other end of the scale, nurse anesthetists earn an average annual income of $157,000 per year (O*Net, 2013).
Look into your options for getting one of several different types of master’s degrees in Virginia by contacting the schools you find on our site. You can get detailed program information to start researching which type of MSN will work best for you.
Virginia RN to MSN Bridge Programs
As health care standards rise across the country, nurses are finding themselves in higher demand than ever before. With your RN degree, you’ve likely gained experience in a wide variety of settings and specialties. This experience may have given you the chance to explore different nursing careers and decide what your long-term goals are. As Virginia tries to move toward a global curriculum of nursing, those with Master’s degrees will come to play a prominent role in Virginia nursing care. Look into RN-to-MSN programs in Virginia to see if they’re a good fit for you!
An MSN can take your career to the next level in many different ways. However, this can be a fairly specific degree, so it’s important to choose the right specialty for your career goals. Popular specialties in Virginia include nurse practitioner, nurse education, and nursing leadership. There may be many more options at your school of choice, so take some time exploring your options!
After you complete your Bachelor-level nursing courses, you can begin the Master’s degree part of your training. The early part of your curriculum gives you experience in many different areas. You may take courses like Advanced Health Assessment, Advanced Clinical Pharmacotherapeutics, Care Delivery and Coordination, and Theoretical Foundations of Advanced Practice Nursing.
If you opt to go into a clinical specialty, you may take courses that focus specifically on the care of different populations. In a nurse practitioner specialty, for example, you may take classes like Family Centered Care Delivery, Coordinated Care of the Elderly, and Epidemiology & Population Assessment. In nurse midwifery, you may take courses similar to Nursing Care of Childbearing Women and Evidence-Based Care in Labor & Delivery.
Even in non-clinical specialties, clinical hours are important. Clinical specialties may require more than 600 hours of practicum, while administrative or educational study paths may have more relaxed requirements.
Earning an advanced degree can be expensive, which is why it’s extremely important to look into your financial aid options once you have chosen a school and a degree program! Virginia has many financial aid providers, including private employers, government agencies, and nursing associations. The Virginia Department of Health provides several state-funded scholarships, particularly for nurse midwifery and nurse practitioner students. The Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority funds scholarships through the Affordable Care Act. They also have a loan repayment program for Virginia graduates that commit to working in Virginia for a set period of time. If you are willing to work at the Virginia Hospital Center after graduation, you may be eligible for a $5,000 annual scholarship.
Through your education and throughout the course of your career, you’ll need to maintain your registered nursing license through the Virginia Board of Nursing. In addition to this, you may need an advanced practice license if you are working as a nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, nurse anesthetist, or clinical nurse specialist. As you complete your degree, you’ll prepare for the testing process via review programs.
The job outlook for advanced nurses in Virginia rivals that of other states in the area. O*Net anticipates slightly slower than average job growth for nursing managers. They report an expected 21 percent increase in job openings between 2012 and 2022 (O*Net, 2012). In this time period, O*Net predicts a 42 percent increase in job openings for nursing instructors.
Within this field, salaries and income ranges vary widely. Per O*Net, the average salary for a Virginia nursing instructor is $62,300 per year. On the other end of the scale, nurse anesthetists in this state earn a median income of $157,000 per year (O*Net, 2013). Average salaries for other nursing professions fall in between these two averages.
Though it can be a three-year commitment to earn an MSN, the work is often well worth it! Beyond simply increasing your earning potential and expanding your career options, dedicating yourself to an advanced degree can help you contribute more to the nursing field in Virginia. Whether you contribute via research, practice, education, or leadership, your MSN can make you an advocate for nurses throughout the state.
Virginia Direct Entry MSN
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing reports that the United States will have an increasing nursing shortage as the country struggles to meet the rising demand for healthcare, and universities do not have enough nurse educators either. If you have a bachelor’s degree in another field but are ready for a different, more rewarding career, this could be the ideal time to attend graduate school for a nursing degree in any specialty of your interest. Virginia has a number of direct entry and accelerated courses available in nursing.
To find those accelerated MSN programs in Virginia that may work for you, search the options on our site, then contact those nursing schools for more information. You could enter the nursing profession with a graduate level education, placing yourself at the forefront of healthcare in Virginia.
The Virginia Commonwealth University is one of the nursing schools that offers a direct entry route. Their master’s program gives nurses the knowledge in advanced practice skills that is necessary to care for a diverse population that has complex health problems across the health–illness continuum.
The University of Virginia also has a direct entry program that trains you as a Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL). This two-year full-time program has 75 credits required and almost 1000 clinical hours of guided learning in six specialty areas from experienced clinicians and faculty. Graduates will be eligible for the NCLEX-RN and the CNL certification exams. If you have an undergraduate or graduate degree in another discipline but want to change your career to the field of nursing this may be a good time to do so, due to the multiple jobs available in nursing.
The typical admission requirements for a direct entry nursing program in Virginia include:
- A baccalaureate or master’s degree from a regionally/accredited school
- A minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0
- Successful completion of the following prerequisite courses within the past five years prior to enrollment: Human Anatomy & Physiology, Microbiology, Life Span Development (Conception to Death), Statistics at the graduate or undergraduate level
- GRE score for those with an undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.25 or lower from their first bachelor’s degree
- Submit a total of three satisfactory recommendations, one from a healthcare provider
- Resume or CV
- Prior work or volunteer experience in healthcare (exposure to nursing is recommended)
- Be available for an interview if requested
- There are additional admission requirements for international applicants
The recommended plan of study for most MSN direct entry programs includes many of the following courses. Those outlined below are specific to the Clinical Nurse Leader program, however many different routes can have very similar curricula.
- Health Assessment & Clinical Interventions
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Nursing Care of Women and Childbearing Families
- Nursing Leadership & Health Care
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Nursing Care of Adults & Older Adults
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Nursing Care of Persons with Psychiatric Illness
- Graduate Pathophysiology
- Leading Teams
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Nursing Care of Adults with Common Health Problems
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Nursing Care of Persons with Complex Health Problems
- Theory and Evidence-Based Practice
- Care Environment Management I, II
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Nursing Care of Children and Families
- Clinical Practice & Decision-Making: Community Health Nursing
- Culture and Health: Implications for Practice
- Leadership Seminar
- Clinical Practice and Decision-Making: Synthesis Practicum
- Epidemiology and World Health
- Nursing, Ethics, and the Larger Healthcare Arena
- CNL in the Health Care System
- Health Policy: Local to Global
- CNL Capstone Practicum
Once you have graduated and passed your NCLEX-RN exam you will be eligible to take the nursing credential examination offered by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. If you are a member of the American Nurses Association the cost of the exam is $270 and nonmembers pay $395.
There are online Direct Entry MSN programs for Virginia residents available as well.
The CNL position has many interesting components as the CNL collaborates with other healthcare professionals that strive to provide optimal patient care. They consult with other healthcare providers and provide such things as patient discharge instructions or clinical procedures. They have the opportunity to evaluate programs and design new programs as required. They also may direct or supervise nursing care staff.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics a Clinical Nurse Specialist earns a mean average annual income of $68,910 as of May 2013. Salaries can be flexible as they are based not only on your education, but they are also based on credentials, experience, the employer and the type of work required. Earning your graduate degree in the nursing field may open many new career opportunities.
If you are living in a low income bracket, visit the Financial Aid office at your University and complete a FAFSA application, which is a federal grant program. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing have numerous financial aid resources listed on their website, which may help pay your expenses.
The Virginia State Loan Repayment Program works in the same manner as Health Resources and Services Administration’s Nurse Corps program. In order to provide care to underserved areas, these program pays 60 percent of your tuition if you work in one of the designated underserved areas for two years.
Getting your graduate degree can give you a great deal of satisfaction, a new career, and it may offer an increase in your income. Contact the schools on this site to learn more.
Virginia CRNA Programs
After earning your bachelor’s degree in nursing, it’s likely that you needed to get some experience under your belt before you felt confident in the nursing field. Now that you’re more confident in patient care, protocols, and pharmacology, you may be ready to take the next step in your nursing career. If you want to pursue a career that allows you to work independently with patients, keep patients pain-free during surgical procedures, and will put your advanced nursing education to use, nurse anesthesia may be the right path for you.
Contact the schools with nurse anesthetist programs in Virginia to learn more about getting your degree and working in this field.
If you want to be a nurse anesthetist, you must be competent in various nursing skills, ready to advocate for your patients, and interested in furthering your nursing education throughout your career. During the course of a shift, you may help an anxious patient prepare for surgery, ensure that they have the pain relief they need, and make sure that anesthesia levels stay appropriate throughout a procedure. In addition, you may provide post-surgical support and pain relief.
The field of nursing anesthesiology is growing, particularly in states like Virginia, where health care organizations are looking for cost-effective ways to provide necessary services. Keep reading to learn more about CRNA degrees in Virginia and what it takes to become a nurse anesthetist.
Admissions and Curriculum for CRNA Programs in Virginia
If you know that you want to become a nurse anesthetist, you may want to begin preparing for this career choice well in advance of attending graduate school. It’s important to perform well at the undergraduate level while earning your bachelor’s degree in nursing. Most Virginia CRNA programs require you to have a GPA of 3.0 or higher, and you may need an even higher GPA to compete with other applicants. After earning a bachelor’s degree, it’s also crucial to get the right type of nursing experience. Work experience in critical care is a common requirement in Virginia, as CRNA programs may want to know how you function in a fast-paced work environment. Furthermore, you must have a valid registered nursing license at all times throughout your education.
The curriculum for your nurse anesthesia program may be divided into two main parts. The first part is the theory portion, in which you spend your time in the classroom and delve into various aspects of nursing theory. During this part of your education, you may study pharmacology and the pharmacological properties of anesthesia in depth.
In the second part of your program, which typically lasts longer, you go out into the field and gain clinical experience. During this part of your training, you may work in fields like labor and delivery, surgery, and emergency care. Some of the courses that may be part of your curriculum include Nurse Anesthesia Advanced Lab, Principles and Practice of Nurse Anesthesia, and Regional Anesthesia. You may also study health assessment, patient communication, and nursing ethics. By the time you complete your program, you should plan on having at least 550 clinical hours and nurse anesthesia.
After you get accepted to a CRNA program in Virginia, you may start applying for scholarships and grants. Consider those offered by employers, government agencies, and schools. The Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority offers grants to advanced nursing professionals that hope to serve rural Virginia after graduation. Through the Commonwealth Long Term Care Foundation, you may apply for several different grants.
Working as a Nurse Anesthetist in Virginia
Once you have completed your graduate program in nurse anesthesiology, you may be ready to get into the workforce and put your skills to use. However, it may take a bit of time for you to get your license and certification in this field. Before you can apply for Virginia licensure, you must get your national certification through the National Board of Certification & Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists. This process requires you to fill out a thorough application, undergo a background check, and pass a rigorous licensing exam. You can then have proof of your certification sent to the Virginia Board of Nursing. They will look at your school transcript, ensure that your certification is valid, and look at the status of your registered nursing license. Once they have completed these steps, they can give you your state nurse anesthetist license.
As a nurse anesthetist, you may want to learn more about this field and what it is like to work in Virginia. You may find it helpful to join the Virginia Association of Nurse Anesthetists. This organization supports nurse anesthetists all over Virginia by hosting continuing education events, offering networking opportunities, advocating at a political level, and supporting high practice standards in Virginia. You may wish to join while you are still a student so that you can start building a network of advanced nursing contacts.
Across the United States, the job outlook for nurse anesthetists is promising. However, you may find the job outlook in Virginia is even better. From 2012 through 2022, O*Net predicts a 38 percent increase in nurse anesthetist jobs in Virginia. This exceeds the national job growth rate by 13 percent (O*Net, 2012).
Salaries in Virginia tend to be fairly competitive. O*Net reports a statewide average salary of $157,000 per year for nurse anesthetists.
This career path could help you realize your full potential as a nurse. To start preparing for a career as a nurse anesthetist, use our school listings to contact Virginia CRNA schools today.
Forensic Nursing in Virginia
As a registered nurse, you may feel drawn to people in need. After all, many people who go into nursing do so because of their desire to help. If you have strong nursing skills and a good sense of clinical judgment, you may be able to do even more good by earning a forensic nurse degree.
Advancing your education with a Master’s degree can put you in a position to work with an entirely new group of patients and advocate for them in the healthcare system. Virginia is an excellent place to get started in the field of forensic nursing. Through the Virginia Chapter of the International Association of Forensic Nurses, professionals stay on top of care standards, legislative updates, and new training opportunities.
Ready to learn more about getting involved in forensic nursing in VA?
Master’s Degree Programs in Forensic Nursing in Virginia
There are several ways you may be able to further your education and get started on your forensic nursing career.
If you see yourself working in crime labs, assisting victims of crime, collecting evidence, and analyzing forensic evidence, a Master’s in forensic nursing may be the logical choice. This forensic nursing degree requires that you earn at least 30 graduate credits and complete several hundred hours of clinical experience.
You may want to compare learning outcomes and goals across different programs to find one that is in line with your nursing philosophy.
Forensic Nursing Graduate Courses
- Practice Paradigms in Forensic Nursing
- Healthcare Policy, Ethics and Legal Aspects of Forensic Nursing
- Substance Abuse: Implications for Nursing Practice
- Child Maltreatment
- Epidemic of Sexual Abuse, Domestic Abuse, and Exploitation
If you would rather work in a more specialized part of forensic nursing, you can look into Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner training programs. In this type of program, you learn how to perform physical exams, study state and federal law regarding sexual assault, and explore how to work with law enforcement professionals. Those who pursue a legal nurse consulting degree prepare for a career in the courtroom, where they may answer questions from lawyers, comment on evidence, and offer their professional opinion on cases.
You must earn your forensic nursing certification from the Commission for Forensic Nursing Certification if you want to become a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner or Advanced Forensic Nurse. If you study legal nurse consulting, your accrediting agency is the American Association of Legal Nurse Consultants.
The Role of Forensic Nurses in Virginia
This may very well be one of the best times to commit to your education and become involved in the field of forensic nursing. Research indicates that Virginia has an extreme shortage of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners and Sexual Assault Forensic Examiners (WCYB, 2016). This creates a critical problem in Virginia, since victims must avoid showering or changing their clothes until they are professionally examined by a healthcare provider. This can lead to further trauma and shame for those who have already been seriously harmed.
Forensic nurse salary potential statistics vary between areas, although as a general rule, you may earn more as you become more experienced in different types of criminal cases.
Discover forensic nursing programs in your area and find out which role fits you.
Contact Virginia nursing programs below to begin.
Virginia Clinical Nurse Leader
One of the best parts of being a nurse is the fact that it gives you a chance to make a difference in people’s lives every single day. In Virginia, a state where health care can be extremely difficult to come by in rural areas, this is especially true.
In certain parts of Virginia, it is not uncommon for babies to be born addicted to heroin (NBC Washington, 2015). This can be an extremely difficult situation for everyone involved, but nurses with specialized training and lots of experience can minimize a baby’s discomfort and help them get through withdrawals safely.
As a nurse, you can also expand your career options and your scope of practice by furthering your education. In Virginia, a nursing professor was recently appointed to the AACN Faculty Think Tank, which focuses on the importance of leadership and research in nursing (The Cavalier Daily, 2015).
Studying nurse leadership can open many doors for you. Learn more about becoming a Clinical Nurse Leader and request information from graduate nurse leadership programs in Virginia.
How Can I Become a Clinical Nurse Leader in Virginia?
You have to meet very specific admissions requirements to get accepted to a nurse leadership program in Virginia. First, you need a valid nursing license and a Bachelor’s degree in nursing. If you have a Bachelor’s degree in a different field, look into accelerated graduate nursing programs. If you have an Associate’s degree in nursing, you may complete your education with an RN to MSN degree.
You may also have to meet minimum experience requirements. Many schools only accept applicants with one or more years of nursing experience.
To earn a Master’s degree in nurse leadership, you need to earn between 30 and 40 credits in courses like those listed here:
- Nursing Leadership in Health Care
- Clinical Practice and Decision Making
- Care Environment Management
- Epidemiology and World Health
- Nursing Ethics
- Theory and Evidence-Based Practice
- CNL in the Health Care System
- Health Policy on a Global Scale
In your courses, you may learn about the different settings that nurse leaders work in, including clinics, hospitals, nursing homes, and health care agencies.
Another goal in a CNL program is understanding the complex health care organizations that make up the American health care system. By learning how to navigate the health care industry, you can ensure that your patients get the care they deserve.
You should also be very experienced in quality improvement by the time you finish your Master’s degree, since constant improvement is a tenet of nurse leadership.
Working in a clinical role requires you to keep your nursing license active through the Virginia Board of Nursing. Renewal occurs every two years.
Once you have met these educational requirements, you can apply for CNL certification through the AACN. You are awarded your certification after passing a comprehensive written exam.
What Does a Clinical Nurse Leader Do?
One of the main benefits of becoming a Clinical Nurse Leader is the fact that this is a relatively new certification in nursing, so you have a chance to establish yourself as a leader in this particular specialty. A growing body of research supports the use of Clinical Nurse Leaders in different settings, so you may discover that an increasing number of Virginia facilities can benefit from your services.
It is crucial to maintain your ties in the nursing community. You may want to stay active in local nursing associations and organizations. In addition, look into joining a group like the Virginia Organization of Nurse Executives and Leaders. Attending events and connecting with other nurse leaders can assist you in learning about the nuances of this position.
Although you may keep many of the same clinical responsibilities that you had as a registered nurse, you may discover that you think about nursing situations and problems in different ways. For example, you may look for trends among your patients and follow up on these trends by exploring nursing studies and research. Rather than taking directions from other practitioners, you may be making care decisions and directing the work of other nurses.
The demand for nurse leaders may continue to grow as the nursing industry of Virginia keeps up with changes in health care. Find out how you can become part of it by contacting Master’s in nurse leadership programs in Virginia.
Virginia Research Nursing Graduate Programs
Throughout the course of your nursing career, you may accomplish several different goals and work in many different parts of the industry. That is one of the benefits of nursing—if you need a change, you can look into one of the many other career paths in this field and find out if it suits you. In Virginia, nursing research is a field that is gaining traction.
Nursing research accomplishes many goals at once: it saves time and money, improves patient health outcomes, uncovers staffing problems within the industry, and finds opportunities for growth within the health care industry. Researchers in Virginia utilized their skills to set standards and practical goals for veteran care centers, an area of nursing chronically plagued with problems. Ready to take the next step in your nursing career?
Learn more at research nursing graduate programs in Virginia.
Virginia Graduate Degree Programs in Nursing Research
The requirements of your nursing research program depend on which school you choose to attend. The majority of programs require a Bachelor’s degree in nursing. However, if you select a program that does not require a nursing degree specifically, your curriculum may include coursework in pharmacology, pathophysiology, and other core nursing subjects. This may extend the amount of time that you spend in school. On average, research nursing programs span a period of two years.
In your nursing curriculum, you should find a variety of high-level courses that educate you on every aspect of clinical research. Some of the classes you may be required to take include Research Design and Methods for Clinical Studies, Design and Analysis of Studies in the Health Sector, Responsible Conduct of Research, and Data Management & Informatics in Clinical Research. In terms of clinical experience, you may begin your education by observing researchers at work and gradually take on a larger role in nursing studies. Your training may culminate in a capstone study or project.
With the large push to make health care more affordable, there has been a renewed interest in nursing research. As a result, there may be many grants and scholarships for you to consider. The Virginia Department of Health is a good place to start.
The Role of Clinical Nurse Researchers in Virginia
There are a number of research clinics and institutions located throughout Virginia. Keep in mind, however, that you may find the greatest number of employment options in the state’s urban areas. One of the most accomplished nursing research centers in Virginia is the Center for Biobehavioral Clinical Research, which is one of the highest ranked research centers in the United States.
If you are passionate about the field of nursing, your passion could change the landscape of Virginia health care. Get involved in now by contacting research nursing programs in Virginia.
Virginia Certified Nurse Midwife
As a nurse, you likely know how important advanced care providers are and you’ve seen the effects of the care provider shortage. If you’re ready to earn a master’s degree in nursing and take your career to a higher level, then you may be ready to become an advanced nursing professional. Becoming a nurse midwife gives you the skills and abilities that are required in the primary care of women.
Contact the Virginia nurse midwife programs listed below to learn more about returning to nursing school to become a certified nurse midwife (CNM).
Nurse midwives play a crucial role in primary care in Virginia. In fact, their role is continuing to grow as the doctor shortage of Virginia becomes more severe. You may see female patients of all ages, from young women who want a care provider they can communicate with to women going through menopause. However, nurse midwives are most well-known for providing care during pregnancy, labor, and childbirth.
If you’re ready to use your nursing abilities to serve women during one of the greatest changes in their lives, learn more about certified nurse midwife programs in Virginia by requesting more information.
Becoming a Certified Nurse Midwife in Virginia
Becoming a nurse midwife is a rewarding process that can lead to significant professional benefits for you. Spend a bit of time getting familiar with the learning outcomes of your program and discover what you need to know in order to successfully graduate. While working through your program, you can learn how to combine theory and research to make sound clinical decisions, evaluate and use health care strategies for women, design and follow research, and adapt to the changing demands of the health care environment.
Early in your program, you may take a set of core courses that are required of all advanced nursing students. Courses in this category include Quality Improvement and Informatics, Advanced Health Assessment, Evidence-Based Nursing, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Advanced Pharmacology in Nursing, and Nursing in the American Health Care System.
Once you have completed your core courses, you can delve into your specialized nurse midwifery courses. CNM courses may include Conceptual Framework for Nurse Midwifery, Advanced Reproductive Dynamics, Issues in Advanced Family Nursing, and Antepartum Care of Healthy Women. Your clinical hours may put you through well woman checkups, pregnancy exams, complicated and straightforward labors, and deliveries.
The state of Virginia has a strong support system for nursing students. This support system includes associations, employers, and schools that award grants to graduate-level nursing students. You may apply for many different scholarships through the Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority. Another state agency, the Virginia Department of Health, funds scholarships for advanced nursing students. If you plan on working in a hospital setting after graduation, you may qualify for funds through the Virginia Hospital Center.
Working as a Certified Nurse Midwife in Virginia
The future of nurse midwifery in Virginia is bright. Job growth in this state is increasingly rapidly. From 2012 through 2022, O*Net expects to see job openings increase by 27 percent throughout the state. Earning a nurse midwifery degree may help you increase your earning potential. Per O*Net, the average salary for a Virginia nurse midwife is $65,100 per year.
As you may know, nurse midwifery is a field that is highly regulated across the country. Though it may take time to get your license, it is worth the work. Your first step involves going to the American Midwifery Certification Board and applying for national certification. You can have proof of your national certification forwarded to the Virginia Board of Nursing and get your registered nursing license upgraded to an advanced practice nursing license.
If you’re passionate about women’s health, you may find a career you love in nurse midwifery. Get started today by reaching out to certified nurse midwife programs in Virginia.
Virginia Clinical Nurse Specialist Programs
What’s your favorite part of being a nurse? Perhaps you enjoy spending time with your patients and you wish you could have more of a hand in their care and clinical plans. Or maybe your passion lies in life-changing research that can help practitioners develop new protocols to help patients. Leadership may be your forte, particularly if you’re a quick thinker and a great multitasker.
No matter what you love about nursing, you may be ready to take the next step in your nursing career by learning about clinical nurse specialist programs in Virginia. Contact the schools listed below to request CNS program information.
For many nurses, becoming a CNS can lead to an increase in demand and may boost your income. U.S. News claims that, in many markets, nurses with graduate degrees can write their own ticket to a new career. This is true in many different parts of Virginia, where health care can be difficult to come by for rural residents.
Becoming a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Virginia
Learning about the steps involved in becoming a CNS can help you determine if this is the right career path for you. You need a Bachelor’s degree in nursing to be considered for admission, and furthermore, you must have a graduating GPA of at least 3.0. One year of nursing experience in critical or acute care can be beneficial, although specialized experience may be required if you want to go into certain paths of study.
This graduate-level degree requires you to complete between 30 and 50 credits of study, depending on which specialty you select and which school you attend. These courses cover the full breadth of nursing education, from leadership and research to clinical practice with different populations.
Your education should be divided into several sections. First, you may take core classes that schools require of all advanced nursing students. Classes that fit into this section include Applications of Research to Practice, Statistical Literacy and Reasoning in Nursing Research, and Theoretical Basis of Advanced Nursing.
From there, you may delve into courses that build your clinical skills, like Clinical Pharmacology, Advanced Health Assessment and Measurement, and Pathophysiological Basis for Advanced Nursing Practice. Toward the end of your education, you may take classes that are unique to clinical nurse specialists. These courses include Health Promotion & Disease Prevention, Human and Family Development Through the Lifespan, and Evaluation in Health Care.
Looking into different types of financial aid may really pay off and help you avoid excessive student loan debt. Consider a variety of sources while earning your graduate degree. The Virginia Hospital Center awards scholarships to students of differing levels of education. The Virginia Health Workforce Development Authority, which is funded by the state government, financially supports students who are willing to work in underserved areas after graduation. The Virginia Department of Health also awards scholarships to nursing students.
Working as a Clinical Nurse Specialist in Virginia
Through the American Nurses Credentialing Center, you can obtain certification in your selected specialty. You must provide proof of your education and pass a comprehensive exam in your field of study. On a state level, clinical nurse specialist licensure goes through the Virginia Board of Nursing. You must keep your RN license valid during your education in order to qualify for licensure as a CNS.
According to CNN Money, clinical nurse specialists may enjoy a number of career benefits. Through the year 2022, a 26% increase in job openings is predicted. CNN Money notes that the average salary for a clinical nurse specialist is $86,500 per year.
Are you ready to work to your full potential as a nurse? Get started now—check out our schools list below and contact clinical nurse specialist programs in Virginia.
Virginia Public Health Graduate Programs
When it comes to measuring health outcomes, every agency in the world looks at public health. One healthy person in a community is great; a community where 90% of the residents meet health goals is extraordinary. This field is extremely diverse, covering varied issues like drug epidemics, teen pregnancy, environmental health issues, and infectious disease.
The importance of public health in Virginia is clear when you look at how many agencies and groups work to improve public health outcomes. The Virginia Public Health Association unites public health nurses and other professionals to work toward common goals in health care. This group can keep you up-to-date and involved in this important field.
Explore this specialty and your options within it by finding out more about public health nursing graduate programs in Virginia.
Master’s Degree Programs in Public Health Nursing in Virginia
As Virginia officials attempt to meet the health care standards of the federal government, the need for public health nurses may continue to increase. However, since this field requires you to be able to work in different settings with people of varying needs, you must be ready to meet a strict set of requirements to call yourself a public health nurse.
Your education and experience is what will define you as a public health nurse. Both Master’s degree programs and doctoral programs can prepare you for certification as a public health nurse. While a Master’s degree may only require two or three years of work, a PhD may take considerably longer, depending on how quickly you complete your thesis. Spend some time thinking about your long-term career goals before deciding which program is the best choice for you.
No matter which type of program you decide to attend, courses tend to be similar between programs and schools. Courses that can help you meet the learning goals of your program include Epidemiology and World Health, Biostatistical Processes in Health Care, Health Promotion and Research, Public Health Leadership, Local to Global Health Policy, Health Care Systems Planning & Evaluation, Foundations of Advanced Nursing, and Transformational Leadership in Nursing.
Applying for scholarships is the next step after getting accepted to a program. The Virginia Department of Health funds several scholarships for nursing students.
The Role of Public Health Nurses in Virginia
When you can put your education to work and start working as a public health professional, you should soon discover that the work you do makes a difference for thousands of Virginia residents. In fact, the work you do may bring about positive change for at-risk populations like children, elderly residents, and minority groups.
Recently, poverty rates for Virginia children shot up, alarming public health professionals. Children in this position may suffer from malnutrition, fewer opportunities at school, and higher rates of illness. With your training, you may be able to come up with solutions to tough problems like this one.
As health care expands, the demand for public health nurses may grow rapidly throughout Virginia. The demand for registered nurses is expected to swell 13% by 2022 in Virginia (O*Net, 2012). It is likely that an advanced degree can improve your earning potential. The average salary for a Virginia registered nurse is $62,600 per year (O*Net, 2014).
Jump into the next stage of your career now by getting more information from public health nursing programs in Virginia.
Graduate Nursing Programs in Healthcare Policy in Virginia
To work in the nursing field, you need to learn quickly and apply newly gained knowledge to a variety of work situations. This skill can help you explore new areas of nursing and find areas of need in Virginia. Once you’ve become experienced as a registered nurse, you may be interested in furthering your education with a Master’s degree.
If you’re interested in healthcare policy, you may be able to contribute to Virginia healthcare in a new way. Policy experts aim to expand Medicaid in Virginia, a move that could improve care options for the elderly and disabled (Washington Post, 2016). A Medicaid expansion could also minimize the amount of people who cannot pay for healthcare. These efforts are in conjunction with numerous groups, including the Virginia Hospital and Healthcare Association.
Are you ready to apply your nursing experience to the world of medical policy? Find out how you can get started by contacting Master’s in healthcare policy programs in Virginia.
Master’s Degree Programs in Healthcare Policy in Virginia
To start working in healthcare policy, you have to be willing to look beyond your current scope of practice as a nurse and think critically about healthcare as a whole in Virginia. Your areas of interest may expand to include other healthcare practitioners, public health, healthcare finance, administration, and licensure.
Many of these areas are quite different from what you do as a registered nurse, which is why it is so important to earn a Master’s degree in healthcare policy.
Programs in healthcare policy can differ quite a bit in Virginia, but on average, you’ll find that programs require about 42 credits. Virginia schools may focus on health policy in the private and public sectors, improving the delivery of health services, the development of leadership skills, and population health.
These topics and other relevant subjects may be explored in courses like:
- Public Health Leadership and Management
- Applied Biostatistics
- Policy Tools for Population Health
- Practice-Based Experience
- Analytic Methods for Health Policy
- Social and Behavioral Theory
- Foundations of Health and Policy
- Public Health Epidemiology
Policy can be an extremely competitive field in terms of developing a reputation, which is why hands-on experience is so important. Many schools require you to complete an internship before you can graduate. You may also work with healthcare research and statistics.
Throughout your career, keep your nursing license up-to-date through the Virginia Board of Nursing. This involves renewing your license every two years.
How Do Nurses Impact Healthcare Policy in Virginia?
If this is your first step into the world of healthcare policy, you may not know how nurses can impact health policies that are passed on or vetoed in Virginia. To get a full understanding of nurses and health policy in Virginia, you simply have to look at the Virginia Nurses Association.
They have been extremely active in legislation for many years. Recent priorities have included stricter staffing standards for nursing homes, the creation of a health benefit exchange, hospital discharge procedures, informed consent for all procedures, and additional steps in the newborn screening process.
In addition to the Virginia Nurses Association, you may work with government agencies, politicians, lobbying groups, and nonprofit organizations. Health policy is closely linked to public health, so you may find yourself working with the Virginia Public Health Association. A significant number of healthcare bills that are proposed in Virginia specifically relate to public health and the overall improvement of population health.
When you consider the long-reaching effects of healthcare legislation, it is clear that starting a career in this specialty is a great way to improve the healthcare industry in general.
Find out how you can start preparing for a career in health policy by contacting graduate healthcare policy programs in Virginia today.