BSN-DNP, no experience - page 3

by acarlow

12,259 Views | 28 Comments

I am currently a BSN student, graduating in May. I want to be an ACNP, thus I applied to the University of Arizona's BSN-DNP ACNP Program. I just received notification that I was accepted. Since, I have told others in the field... Read More


  1. 0
    For those of you already in the BSN-DNP program, how do you like your classes? Do you find the teachers helpful? Do your classes have a lecture component or is there more power point teaching? Thanks in advance for any insight!
  2. 0
    For those of you who just started and went to RISE this fall, how it is going!!?
  3. 0
    One advise for those considering BSN-DNP find the school that helps with clinical placement. I am being serious.
  4. 0
    I like your idea of pursuing an advance practice however it is much better if you have couple of years experience in your field before pushing through. it is like jumping in to the river without a life vest,I know that you will be able to swim but the strong current might injure you. This is just my opinion and the decision is still yours. best regards
  5. 0
    I am graduating from a BSN program in 3 weeks. I have no RN experience, but I do have 5 years of CNA experience in med-surg and ICU. I was accepted to a BSN to DNP-FNP program to begin fall, 2014. I have also heard mixed opinions on whether or not this is a good idea in terms of not having experience, but I feel that as an FNP student interested in providing primary care, the sum of my CNA experience, undergrad nursing experience, and concurrent part-time employment in a med-surg unit as an RN for 2-3 years while in DNP school would be enough. I do plan on being very dedicated to hard work and open to coaching and mentorship during and after DNP-FNP school. I have also been highly supported and encouraged to do this right fresh out of the BSN program by some of my undergrad professors who have also gotten Master's FNP education because if I wait at all, it "will be hard to get back into education mode." Am I delusional, or is it possible that this is going to be just fine? I am planning on doing DNP-FNP part time for 5 years (as the program is laid out for par-time students), but I have considered upping it to full time or nearly full time in order to finish between 3-4 years. Thoughts or advice? OP, how is it going for you?
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    I do not believe that being a floor nurse has added anything to my BSN to DNP experience. I believe it is 2 completely separate positions with different needs. I have met successful NPs that never worked as nurses and I have met NPs that worked as RNs that make you scratch your head. Do what's right for you.
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    I think you seem very bright and will do well in your endeavors....

    HOWEVER, I do think it is a mistake to jump into a program with no experience. I think that it is a disservice to you and to the profession that this program admits new graduates. I strongly feel that there should be experience requirements for all advanced nursing specialties. Even the strongest GN with all the ancillary care experience is green and has a lot to learn. I have spoken with physicians who strongly feel that NPs who start out with little bedside nursing experience are significantly weaker than their more seasoned counterparts. I have worked with a nurse in the ICU who was in a similar program. She took the little knowledge she had from the program and saw zebras everywhere (its an old analogy about looking for zebras when you hear hoof beats). She was severely humbled because her book knowledge could not save her from the experiences that all new grads have (ALL of us) that teach and mold us through making us feel really stupid...

    I don't say any of this to discourage you, but to encourage you to be very careful. I don't think anything we say here is really going to change your course. You sound a lot like me when I was a new grad, I'm not sure I would have listened either. The bottom line is, if you actually do care what people think on this forum, my advice is to wait at least a year and reapply. Good luck with your decision, and your practice. I'm sure you will be a great asset to the profession!
    ChristineN likes this.
  8. 0
    In response to DVAL1423

    No offense, but you have no idea the vast amount of knowledge you don't know. Your experience as a CNA is not invaluable, but is really worthless compared to what you will learn in your first three months as a new grad. The statement that this experience "would be enough" is na´ve at best.... Sorry...

    Good luck, and I wish you well. But don't discount good nursing experience, and don't listen to our counterparts in academia who haven't participated in bedside care since who knows when. It is easy to get back into school mode when you want it... trust me.
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    I believe that the RN experience should compliment the field you plan to work as an advanced practice nurse. If you wish to be a Psych NP, work psych for a few years. If you wish to be an ACNP, try working in acute care/ER/urgent care. If you wish to be a midwife, work in Maternal/Child, L&D, Lactation, and NICU. The broad experience you gain will serve you well and you might find you gain MORE from the graduate experience with clinical experience behind you.

    Advanced Practice Nursing is a different field/focus than being and RN, but the RN experience compliments the advanced practice.


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