NP Clinical Preceptorships - page 2

Note: I posted this as a bump to an older thread, and it got no responses. Figured I'd try it as a new thread to see if it fared any better. Really curious to get some views of current/former NP students. ----------------- ... Read More

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    Thank you so much for this thread! I am currently working on my DNP applications. Unfortunately, Arizona does not have any non-online programs. I might even attend the university in the city I live in, but still will need to deal with it fully online. I had a vague idea that I would need to find my own preceptors, but I really did not thoroughly contemplate it. This adds a bit more panic, but it will really help me later.

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  2. 0

    I am in the position where I am able to take 4 of the required MSN classes as a "non-admitted" grad student, prior to actually applying to the program.

    Turns out to be a good thing. For one thing, I am getting a taste of what classes in the program will be like. Even more importantly, I was able to attend an orientation with all of the admitted MSN students. This was *very* educational. Between the presentors and speaking to my fellow students, I learned a lot of things that are not disclosed in the on-line info that the school provides (not implying any deception on the part of the school).

    This is where I learned that students will have to arrange their own preceptorships, that the physical assessment lab is conducted by sending videotaped assessments to the instructors, and that the FNP students will spend little-to-no time in any hospital environment (we were actually told that we could accompany our preceptor if they rounded on inpatients, but to "keep our hands in our pockets" and not do anything, only "shadow").

    Knowing these facts before actually applying is allowing me to make an informed decision on whether I want to continue with the program, before obligating myself. If you can do similar, it might be wise. An information session, or at least some e-mails to the graduate coordinators/instructors might be called for.
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    I'll be done with my FNP program next semester. I've had to find all my own preceptors and it was always a very stressful thing. My school did provide a list of preceptors but the list was so outdated, most no longer worked there or already had students. I had to cold call offices. I did find that the health department is an excellent place for clinicals. Once you get set up in their system they pretty much have all the rotations you need, family, peds, ob/gyn and some have geriatric facilities. I don't recommend doing all your rotations at the health dept because you get to indoctrinated to their way of doing things, its beneficial to have a variety of places. Give at least 4-6 weeks to find one. Don't be afraid to cold call, the offices have all heard it before..
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    Not every school is operating in this manner. The need for quality preceptors is one reason why our program has remained 'campus-based'. We have structured the classes so that the didactic instruction is only 1 day a week for fulltime students (and have students commuting from all across Virginia as well as surrounding states). We only admit enough APN students as we have preceptors. Our NP passrates are well above the national averages (usually 95-100%), and all of our NP programs are nationally ranked.

    We present NP students with a list of ratified contracts/preceptors and ask students to rank-order their wishes. They are welcome to locate their own preceptor if they want (but most select preceptors from our 'menu' for at least 1 of the two semesters of practica. We can accommodate up to 10 PNP, 20 FNP, 10 PMHNP, and 15 ACNP students per year with our menu of preceptors. We've been in NP education since the early 1970s (were the first NP program in Virginia), and have hundreds of NP alum throughout the Mid-Atlantic area --- many of which have volunteered as preceptors.

    Hunt around. You should be able to find a program that is 'distance friendly' that can provide you with quality preceptors.

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