Psychology Bachelors Degree trying to become registered nurse midwife

  1. Hello,

    I am a senior at a university in Maryland graduating in May. I currently am majoring in psychology and wanted to become an obstetrician gynecologist. Recently I decided that a CNM (certified nurse midwife) would fit me better. I was originally a chemistry major, so I have taken my biology, genetics, general chemistry 1 and 2, physics, calculus, and statistics. I want to get my masters in January 2019, but I need assistance in figuring out how I would transition from a psychology bachelor's degree to eventually a CNM. I know that some accelerated programs are offered that combine the basics of a nursing BSN and a masters, but I want to know about a variety of options.
    Last edit by foreag1 on Feb 25
  2. Visit foreag1 profile page

    About foreag1

    Joined: Feb '18; Posts: 5; Likes: 1

    20 Comments

  3. by   klone
    It's actually CNM, not RNM. (Certified Nurse Midwife)

    First, you would need to become an RN. Start there. Then, once you've been working as an RN ( ideally in labor and deliver), you can apply to a graduate CNM program (there are both Masters and Doctorate programs in Nurse Midwifery).
  4. by   klone
    As far as options to get your RN, since you will already have a Bachelor's, the fastest route would be an accelerated BSN program, which typically takes 12-15 months.
  5. by   foreag1
    I corrected the RNM versus CNM thank you for that as well as your advice.
  6. by   KatieMI
    To get done with Master's by January 2019 is not realistic.

    The shortest possible way is through ABSN (12 months minimum, likely more) directly to CNM (18 months minimum, likely more). CNM programs are generally highly selective and require specific previous nursing experience from all applicants.

    Ob/Gyn is a VERY specific area, and Nurse Midwives occupy even more specific field within it. The better programs' strict requirement of at least couple of years of bedside L&D or similar area is very much justified. L&D is a difficult field to get into for new grads RNs in many parts of the country and by itself may take moving or several years experience even to begin.
  7. by   foreag1
    I said I wanted to get my masters IN January 2019 not BY January 2019 because that logically would not even make sense. I understand that it is going to be difficult, but I want to know the beginning steps to start this journey. Thank you for your advice.
  8. by   elkpark
    Quote from KatieMI
    CNM programs are generally highly selective and require specific previous nursing experience from all applicants.

    Ob/Gyn is a VERY specific area, and Nurse Midwives occupy even more specific field within it. The better programs' strict requirement of at least couple of years of bedside L&D or similar area is very much justified. L&D is a difficult field to get into for new grads RNs in many parts of the country and by itself may take moving or several years experience even to begin.
    This isn't true. There are direct entry graduate programs for CNM that take people with a baccalaureate degree in something else and no nursing experience whatsoever (as the OP notes in her original post), and some of those programs are at very well known and respected schools.

    OP, a direct entry program is probably your quickest option. If you do a separate ABSN program and apply for traditional CNM programs as an RN, a lot of them will want you to have L&D nursing experience.

    Best wishes for your journey!
  9. by   foreag1
    Thank you so much for your advise. If you do not mind, could you tell me some of the schools that offer programs? I have only seen a few. Maybe a website that could help me find programs.
  10. by   KatieMI
    Quote from elkpark
    This isn't true. There are direct entry graduate programs for CNM that take people with a baccalaureate degree in something else and no nursing experience whatsoever (as the OP notes in her original post), and some of those programs are at very well known and respected schools.

    OP, a direct entry program is probably your quickest option. If you do a separate ABSN program and apply for traditional CNM programs as an RN, a lot of them will want you to have L&D nursing experience.

    Best wishes for your journey!
    Direct entry for non-nursing bachelors "all-inclusives" take 4 years and usually more expensive than ABSN + MSN.

    Obstetrics (which is, de facto, the one part of specialty where CNMs do not compete with other APN specialties) remains an area of very high malpractice risks. Therefore, past experience still seems to matter quite a lot for CNMs if they want higher-profile jobs right out of school. I met quite a few CNM students during my journey and the majority did 2 ( which was required minimum all around) to 5 years of L&D before going back to grad school and were pretty close to killing each other in search of still rarer high risk L&D jobs/placements. According to them, without this experience it is "difficult" to find a job in L&D after graduation, and I am speaking about a part of the country with relatively low saturation and top-level school.

    In fact, I had a strong feeling that situation with CNMs are closer to CRNA schools with their cut-throats competitiveness than to FNPs.
  11. by   foreag1
    Quote from elkpark
    This isn't true. There are direct entry graduate programs for CNM that take people with a baccalaureate degree in something else and no nursing experience whatsoever (as the OP notes in her original post), and some of those programs are at very well known and respected schools.

    OP, a direct entry program is probably your quickest option. If you do a separate ABSN program and apply for traditional CNM programs as an RN, a lot of them will want you to have L&D nursing experience.

    Best wishes for your journey!
    Thank you so much for your advise. If you do not mind, could you tell me some of the schools that offer programs? I have only seen a few. Maybe a website that could help me find programs.
  12. by   KatieMI
    Here is a list of all accedited CNM/CM programs:

    ACME Accredited Programs

    I am surprised that there are so few of them. Only 39 for the whole country.
    You might need to contact program directly, as every of them might have "internal" requirements, especially re. GPA. After a quick ru through, I saw Vanderbilt. SUNY/D and few others will determine if they consider an applicant's non-nursing degree or not.
    Last edit by KatieMI on Feb 25
  13. by   LibraSunCNM
    Here is a list of all of the CNM programs in the U.S.:

    Midwifery Education Programs

    You will find the website for the American College of Nurse Midwives (ACNM) to be a wealth of info. The list of programs specifies for each school what kind of options they offer---direct entry (no prior nursing experience required), DNP, etc.

    As a CNM I disagree that entry into CNM programs is as cutthroat as CRNA programs. It's definitely better than the plethora of shady for-profit online NP programs who will let anyone with a pulse and nursing license in, but it's not as hard to get into as CRNA school by a long shot. Additionally, it's definitely a regional thing whether the direct-entry students who go straight through without prior nursing experience may have difficulties getting jobs. It's quite common in certain areas, NYC being one of them, for it not to affect your employment chances much if at all. As long as the students do well in their CNM program, their lack of nursing experience usually doesn't hold them back very much. Again, that varies depending on the area.
  14. by   klone
    A midwife I worked with in Denver went to SUNY and did their direct entry CNM program as a non-nurse.

close