UTEP, A&M CC, TT which one for FNP? - page 2
Got accepted to all, wondering which one would you goto and why. They are all online. Thanks, Mike... Read More
1Nov 12, '13 by Riburn3, MSN, APRN, NPSundayd,
I just finished up my 3rd semester in the UTEP FNP program, and so far we have only needed to go to campus for the nursing school graduate orientation before the program started. At one point there was talk that we would ne to go in during our Health Assessment class, but this was cancelled. To my knowledge, I will be required to go to UTEP once in the coming spring and once in the summer for various clinical skill check offs/teachings. I also believe once next fall as well, plus again for graduation. That said, a coworker who is graduating this December said he only went in 3 times total during his time at UTEP, including the orientation, but the program evolves based on student feedback (it's very refreshing).
In terms of clinicals, yes, it is a pain. One of the issues I have had is they require you to get your instructors over a year or more in advance, and two of my preceptors left their current jobs for different specialties, meaning I have to search all over again. They do keep some preceptors available for emergency situations in case something like that happens at the last minute. One thing I would recommend is to join the Texas NP organization, or if you aren't in Texas, your states respective organization. It is free your first year and they maintain a list of preceptors all over the state. I found two of mine through the Texas NP site, and the other two through personal connections. In all honesty, if you reach out to people, they will usually say yes to precepting you. I was only turned down by one preceptor and it was because she switched from Womens Health to just Family Practice.
If you have any other questions don't hesitate to ask. I can answer questions about classes, workload, etc.
0Nov 12, '13 by sundaydThank you, Riburn3! I checked out the Texas NP site, immediately signed up, and found some possible clinical sites. It is awkward to ask preceptors about doing a clinical a year or more in advance. I've gotten some confused looks about it. I live in south Texas so travel to El Paso is quite a distance but doable, and 3 or 4 times is not bad for a 2 year program. Did/Are you still working? Is it easy to balance the classes and work? Do you collaborate, study, or communicate with classmates often? I'm sure as I get closer to starting I will have more specific questions. Thanks again for being a source of information.
1Nov 12, '13 by Riburn3, MSN, APRN, NPsundayd, yes I am still working fulltime, usually 50 hours a week as the charge of a CVICU. I have actually found it very easy balancing work and school, which has been a shock. A big advantage for me working nights is there's often some downtime where I can study or work on a paper while sitting in the monitor area.
In terms of classmate collaboration, yes it happens often. You'd be surprised how many people come from central and South Texas. Every class is organized similar to a giant message board like this one where there will be a prompt and people are required to have discussions about them each week. Similarly, some classes are broken into discussion groups where you will be chatting with the same 7 or 8 people all semester long about work and providing feedback. Additionally for a couple of classes, group work is required, and although I was skeptical about group work going into the program, at the graduate level it is night and day above the group work that was required in an undergrad level. I haven't encountered any lazy group mates.
If you start in the spring you are probably going to take Advanced Patho and Nursing Theories. Both weren't too difficult, and although the amount of reading required is a lot, the assignments that accompany the readings are not bad at all. Theories only required two big papers during the semester, which even then is between 5-7 double spaced pages. A big tip, buy PERRLA APA software. It's a one time $35 software program that runs with Word, and it basically does APA format for you on autopilot. All work is required in APA format, and often 10-20% of your grade will simply be for APA format. Before starting school, APA format was my biggest fear of grad school and PERRLA completely erased that. I haven't gotten a single point docked for APA format.