I am "that" NP. I did a Direct Entry program and have not worked bedside, but went right into a NP position. That was 9 years ago. I've not had any issues working as a NP, and really don't use much of what I learned in the RN portion of my program. Some caveats-I had over 20 years of experience in a different health care role that had very little direct patient care, but I did have years of hospital experience in that role. I also work outpatient as a NP. I am not trained to do inpatient care. I think RN experience is very valuable if you are going to work in patient. I also went to a very rigorous and respected program, not an on-line, for profit, you're on your own program. Finally, I worked my butt off and did more clinical hours than were required. I knew I had more to prove, and I wanted to do the best I could for my patients. I've been very successful, and have been praised by patients, colleagues, and supervisors. I have no regrets taking this route.
I think people can be successful in the Direct Entry programs, and can also fail in traditional programs even if they've had years of RN experience. It's very individual. Critical thinking skills and experiences in other careers can translate into success for graduates of direct entry programs. I precept student NPs from both paths, and I have had stellar DE students and crappy students with years of RN experience. Some RNs have difficulty transitioning to the provider role. DE students (at least the ones I've precepted) tend to be overachievers and will go above and beyond to learn. That's not to say I haven't had some fantastic traditional NP students, too. I will only precept for a few reputable schools
, and will not precept for any for-profit schools that have low admission standards.
Don't disregard Direct Entry grads. We're out there, we're not going away, and many of us are very competent and successful.