Quote from TBH831
I've been ruminating for a little over a year now about applying to a direct entry MSN and I'm STILL in the process of elimination on the school and programs to which I should apply. Much of the debate I have with myself is mostly about which school would best prepare me for the field of nursing.
In the beginning, I was heavily geared towards trying for the UCSF's MEPN because it seems like the ultimate place to be in terms of getting the best education, clinical and research training, and also because I live just across the bay from it. However, for these very same reason, everyone wants to go there and so their admission process is highly competitive if not the most. Having just graduated from a pretty good school myself (UC Berkeley,) I thought I might have a chance there but a grad. school advisor whom I've recently seen told me otherwise (although she hasn't even seen all my grades and my resume.) My cumulative GPA from my undergrad is 3.16 with science GPA of around 3.45. I know my GPA isn't very spectacular so I'm hoping my long standing history of having worked for the State's public health agency would help balance this out a bit. I just don't understand why the advisor doubted my chance so much even though she didn't really know the full scope of my candidacy--I guess it's just that competitive...
And so the process continues. I started thinking of other schools that I might have a chance of getting into and names such as Samuel Merritt University, Simmons University, UT Austin, Emory came into mind. I also came across a program at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, and this program appeals to me because it gives me the option to go beyond after the MSN part to get a degree in ND. So, here's my question, has anyone an opinion about the school and their nursing program?
Also, would anyone who's currently a practicing NP in the Alameda County, CA vecinity be interested in mentoring/job shadowing? Frankly, I would really like to get a more in-depth opinion/dialogue exchange with someone about the dynamicism of being a nurse practitioner. Anything would help.
Thanks a bunch!
UCSF is highly competitive as #2 in the nation for grad nursing schools. The U of Washington in Seattle is #1. So you are right, there are over 500 people who apply for 75 slots, but a great majority want to be FNP's, ANP's or mid-wifery candidates. They only have a handful of slots for each focus area, so the odds are stacked against you if you are interested in a "popular" area. You must state on your application which focus area you are applying for.
If would be helpful if you could state what is your main goal in nursing? What area are you interested in? Where do you see yourself 5 years after you obtain your MSN? What is your motivation?
Then, have you taken the GREs yet? True, your GPA is low for most MEPN candidates (most have a GPA of 3.5 or higher, especially for their pre-reqs). Perhaps if you had a stellar GRE that would help. Most schools look at your academic record (U/G GPA), the pre-req GPA, GRE scores, your essay and recommendations. Some schools weigh health care related experiences, working with the underserved, speaking another language, and community service more heavily, especially if all the candidates have highly competitive academic scores/GPAs. Other schools are not as big on the health related experiences; they just want to be sure you can survive the accelerated pace of the MEPN program and have thought about why you want to pursue a RN/MSN. Hope that helps.