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NP application process

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Hi, I've noticed some schools require recommendations for their DNP programs, and other online or hybrid MSN NP schools don't ask for recommendations. I just started a new position as a step down ICU nurse and I don't have recommendations I can get just yet but would like to start classes this fall. How can I start asking for recommendations when I don't feel confident as a nurse yet? I'm I not understanding something?

verene, MSN

Specializes in mental health / psychiatic nursing.

If you want to start this fall I would double check you can still apply to the programs you are interested in. Many schools close applications by early Spring for fall admission in the same year.

If your current employer is not a good place to seek references, do you have prior coworkers or managers who you could ask?

You may also be able to take a few classes as a non-matriculated student if you have pre-reqs to complete, or want to try out a few graduate courses before committing to a program - in which case you may still be able to start this Summer or fall, and faculty could become potential future recommenders.

Thank you! I’m looking into online Master NP programs. I don’t they require recommendations but I will follow up this week.

FullGlass, BSN, MSN, NP

Specializes in Adult and Geriatric Primary Care. Has 3 years experience.

6 hours ago, CinLeo42 said:

Thank you! I’m looking into online Master NP programs. I don’t they require recommendations but I will follow up this week.

This is a recipe for disaster. You are applying to subpar schools. This is exactly the type of education that gives NPs a bad name.

verene, MSN

Specializes in mental health / psychiatic nursing.

7 hours ago, CinLeo42 said:

Thank you! I’m looking into online Master NP programs. I don’t they require recommendations but I will follow up this week.

Online programs are not created equally. Make sure you do your research! This forum is littered with posts from online students who can't find preceptors, are having to extend time in school, and/or pay extra for preceptors/education, or who need remedial training following graduation and/or have extremely difficult times finding employment following graduation due to the program they attended.

There ARE good programs out there, so make sure you do your research and really weigh the pros/cons of easy/fast to get into vs quality of program, support provided, education, and employment prospects down the road.

I hope I can get 3 recommendations. I’ve only been at my new job 3 months. I’ve worked med Surg 2 yrs prior but that manager no longer at hospital. I may or may not get in next year especially with the application process. I’m going to lose time that I could have been in school. Feeling frustrated & lost with this whole thing. Did my BSN at UIC online and I wasn’t impressed but it was supposed to be a reputable university. 😞

FullGlass, BSN, MSN, NP

Specializes in Adult and Geriatric Primary Care. Has 3 years experience.

9 minutes ago, CinLeo42 said:

I hope I can get 3 recommendations. I’ve only been at my new job 3 months.

Reputable schools want a combination of recommendations from former professors and work references. If you can't find 3 references, then you are probably not a good candidate for any NP program. For one thing, people keep in touch with former supervisors and colleagues. Sounds like you are not good at building lasting relationships at work.

I will not have problem getting recommendations after a year. It’s not about whether or not can get them, it’s about time. I was hoping to get recommendations sooner, and I’m just being impatient. I am good at building relationships at work. Please don’t make a comment like that based of little information. It’s just mean. I came on here for encouragement not to be put down. Thank you!

Thank you for your advice! I will definitely do more research on reputable NP schools. I’m also going to ask my previous BSN professor if she could give me a good recommendation. I also forgot that my old manager from Med Surg is on my FB page! I’m feeling more optimistic. Thank you again for your input:-)