I (in my humble opinion) would add the following:
-Cerebral palsy is usually an acquired condition as a consequence of extreme prematurity, not an admitting diagnosis by itself and I would dare say that prematurity is the #1 cause of being admitted to a NICU. Full-term is 37 weeks and above (although ACOG has recently changed so that 37-38 weeks is early term, 39-40 weeks full term, and 41 weeks post-term), but many FT infants still get admitted for problems related to birth.
-The RNC-NIC exam by the NCC corporation is more recognized in the neonatal world and is by far more popular for NICU RNs. You need 2 years of NICU experience in order to take it.
-The different levels have recently changed by the AAP and as a consequence, you may still see a lot of hospitals refer to things like, "Level IIIB" or "Level IIIC." There was no such thing as a "Level IV," although many tertiary academic centers called themselves that because they truly did offer many more services than other level III units. I do like that they've clarified it and traumaRUS has the correct "levelling."
-The NNP program thread hasn't been updated in awhile and many programs have shut down. I wouldn't go off of that list alone, but it can serve as a good starting point. I also created a thread that you can search for that lists the schools and how much they cost in-state/out-of-state (a few years ago), whether or not they require a GRE, etc etc.
-Academic centers are an excellent way to get started in a NICU career and they generally overwhelming take new grad nurses. They like them because they are "fresh" and have no "bad habits" that they pick up from the adult world in regards to getting used to adult medicine norms. If you apply for a job, make sure they have a decently long orientation (at least 12 weeks, better to have longer; I had 20 weeks). You will feel like you're in school again because you are learning entirely new norms. It's okay to feel dumb; we all do at times, but especially as a new grad.
-STABLE and NRP are good certifications that you can get while trying to make yourself competitive for job applications, although they are challenging as a student nurse. I took NRP as a senior nursing student and then took STABLE as a new grad while in orientation.
Hmm...didn't mean to go that far. Hope you're okay with it traumaRUS, once I got going, couldn't help myself! What we really need is a FAQ page in the NICU forum because we get the same questions all the time...