The Doctor of Nursing Practice degree is for students already in possession of a Master of Science in Nursing who are looking to work at the highest clinical level. This doctoral degree will give you the opportunity to hold leadership roles within the health care system of public and private practices, can lead to administrative opportunities or you can choose to pursue teaching in a postsecondary environment. This program is a partnership between the Schools of Nursing at Western Carolina University and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
The D.N.P. is a 42-semester hour (post-master level) program that also includes 1,000 clinical practice hours (including 500 from MSN program). The classroom curriculum will focus on subjects like Health Care Policy and Ethics; Global Health and Social Justice; Economics of the Health Care System; and other 800-level courses. During your clinical residency you will also complete a Scholarly Project that will address complex issues affecting groups of patients, health care organizations or health care systems. The Scholarly Project utilizes a student’s understanding of informatics, technology, and in-depth knowledge of the clinical and behavioral sciences.
A D.N.P. gives you the opportunity to continue clinical work at a public hospital or private practice, advance to administrative roles in the health care system, teach postsecondary courses to the next generation of nurses, research best practice policies or pursue other professional opportunities. According to NursingLink.com the average salary for D.N.P. degree holders is $95,000. If you’re looking to explore teaching, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing states there is a shortage of qualified nursing faculty with doctoral-level degrees.