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I'm currently in the process of applying to UVM's MEPN program for 2011, and am particularly interested in the psychiatric mental health nursing track. Any other applicants out there? Any current students or alumni with advice, etc?



Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

Hi! I just submitted my application over the weekend. I'd be interested to hear from current students as well. I found a discussion from last year's applicants that took place just as admission letters were being received. It's going to be a long few months waiting and hoping!

I am just finishing up getting all my references to complete the online form. Doesn't seem like we won't be hearing from anyone at UVM for quite sometime.

Are you applying to any other programs?


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

I went to an info session last night, and they said decisions would be made in January. This was what was in the application confirmation email as well. They said in the past they would get 100-150 applications for 14-16 seats, but now that they've started using the common application (Nursing CAS) they expect to get hundreds of applications. That was a little discouraging to hear!

This is the only program I have applied to. I live in the area and have a family, so relocation is not an option at this point in my life. How about you?

That is a bit overwhelming and discouraging. Even 15/100 seemed like a pretty selective program to me. However I'm not sure if their logic is very good- the NursingCAS application doesn't seem to be that widely used by nursing programs yet, and I feel that the program at UVM is one that's specific enough that, if that's what you were looking for, that's where you'd be applying regardless of the type of application. Fingers crossed either way!

My references are taking their time with getting the forms done which makes me a bit anxious. Hope they finish up soon!

I actually live in New York, so I would be relocating for the program. I'm particularly interested in the Psych NP track, which isn't offered very many places, it seems. Getting turned down would be a setback, but I just retook the GRE to improve my score and am working as a medical assistant now, so I'm hoping that all helps to boost my application. My GPA is lacking :-(

Do you have any nursing or health care background? What got you interested in the MEPN program?


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

One of the things that concerned me is that the 15 slots were divided between the three tracks, but they wouldn't indicate how they split it. They also didn't indicate which track they expect to get the most apps for. I chose Family NP because I like the broader scope of practice.

I have a master's degree (MBA), so thankfully I don't have to take the GRE. I work full-time at a college, but I have been volunteering as an EMT for a little over a year, so I'm hoping that experience strengthens my application. I left the info session feeling like I wouldn't have done anything differently in my app, but in the meantime I know I'm going to drive myself crazy trying to figure out how my app will stack up against others. This would be a career change for me, and I haven't told anyone at work that I am pursuing it in case it doesn't work out. The next couple of months of waiting are going to be really hard.

How long have you been a med assistant?

Hi all,

If you are interested in the Psych NP track at UVM, then make sure you speak with someone about the direction of the program before committing to attend. I was a student in the MEPN program, and the pre-licensure year is definitely intense, but does make you a registered nurse in one year (for the past two years everyone has passed the NCLEX on the first try). If you're considering moving to VT for the program, or want more info feel free to send me a private message.

Sorry its taken me so long to reply...

I've only been a medical assistant approximately 6 months. I was extremely lucky to find a position with on the job training- they've taught me everything from phlebotomy to performing and analyzing bone density scans. It's been a really great opportunity for me. It's a great office where they have many college students and graduates come in, train, work a year or so, rarely more, and then move on to other things. It can be hectic and high pressure sometimes, but its been a great learning environment!

It sounds like you've got a good chance of getting into the program- you've got an advanced degree and experience! I was actually glad to take the GRE, hoping it will offset my sub par undergrad GPA. I also have my fingers crossed that being an Ivy League Alumni will help my cause. I've been sad to see little emphasis on extracurriculars and such on both applications as well. :-(

Sorry. Just anxious!

Do you know of anyone else applying to the program, or anyone who is a current or former student? What inspired you to make the career switch?


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

I've been chatting with someone from another thread (Direct Entry MSN's 2010) who was accepted last year and deferred. She gave me some suggestions on how to prepare for an interview - although at the info session they said they no longer do interviews, which I find odd for a such a selective program.

As for a career switch... I have always wanted to be a nurse, but when I was looking at colleges back in the day, a very influential guidance counselor told me not to bother because the job market was poor. She pushed me toward business - which is what I did. A part of me has always wondered what if. Then several of my family members became EMT's and I was intrigued, but at that time I was so busy with my family, career and education that I couldn't take on anything else. Fast forward to last year when a family tragedy inspired me to take action and become an EMT myself.

Working on the front line of patient care has been incredibly rewarding, and I want to do more. I looked into a variety of nursing programs, and decided to pursue being an NP because I think my management background would tie in nicely at the advanced practitioner level. I picked the family NP track because I like the broader scope of practice involved in working with people of all ages.

I've had a really good career and it's scary to think of giving it up. I really wish I had a crystal ball to look a couple months ahead and have an answer! I also wish I could get some insight into UVM's decision making process. I know they have to be purposely vague because with limited spaces they are going to turn away qualified candidates. It's also hard to tell from these boards how your application will stack up because although people talk about their stats and their experiences, you never know how the college will view your whole package or weight certain things given the current pool of applicants.

I'm just telling myself for now that if it's meant to be, it will be.

How did you do on your GRE retake?

I got a 1330 this time around. 780 on the math, which is good, but also means my verbal was really lacking! I'm still hoping it helps me out though. My boyfriend applied to a number of graduate programs last year with a very low GPA (2.6!), and a GRE score of 1390 and was accepted into almost every program he applied to, even some that stated on their website that a 3.0 was required for admissions. He even got into his top choice, and is now studying at University of Miami. He's being very supportive of my decision to apply to UVM and plans to move to Vermont with me if I get accepted...

It really makes me nervous how competitive the program is though. I wish I didn't have all my eggs in this one basket, but the psych NP track is pretty hard to find. I'm trying to stay confident, but as you said, if its meant to be it will be.

You sound like you really have great inspiration for your career switch. No matter how overwhelming it is now, I'm sure it will be worth it if it's really what you want to do!


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

I've heard that the 1300-1400 range for GRE's is good! And at the info session the UVM people assured us that they look at whole package because positives like good GRE scores can offset GPAs. Did your references finally do their thing? I waived my right to see my references because one of the UVM people (she was one of the psych track faculty) said they viewed that as "weightier." I guess they figure that references are more likely to be honest if the applicant can't see what they wrote?

Some of the encouraging things that I've heard (seen?) on the forums is that some people got accepted from the wait list. That makes sense as not everyone who is accepted actually enrolls, and that boosts the odds a little bit. I've also seen message from people who after being denied initially asked how to strenghten their applications and worked for a year either taking classes or gaining experience that got them accepted on a second try.

I'm glad that the holidays will provide a little distraction over the next couple of months!

I'm still waiting on one reference... Kind of makes me antsy! I got letters from the office manager and a doctor at the office I work in. The last is from my academic advisor from undergrad. I also opted to waive my right to seeing the reference forms, though I didn't actually have a reason for doing so at the time. Just seemed like what I was supposed to do!

I also noticed that it seemed a lot of people got taken off the wait list. Hopefully this year will be the same, though I'm sure that just makes the whole process even more intense! I was certainly surprised to see that some people have applied up to 4 times to the program before finally getting in. Very motivated and committed!

The holidays will definitely be a welcome change of pace over the next few weeks. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday! So excited for next week!

Do you and your family spend Thanksgiving at home, or will you be traveling?


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

We're doing a little of both - dinner at a friend's on Thursday, family dinner at home on Friday (my daughter works on Thursday), and then dinner at another friend's house on Sunday. I will be in a turkey coma come Monday!

How about you?

Sounds like you've got a busy weekend! Turkey is delicious, so I wouldn't complain! I'll be eating leftovers the whole weekend so count me in for a turkey coma as well!

This will be the first year that I can remember that my mom won't be making the turkey. She's a nurse and offered to work the holiday this year, so my brother and his wife will be hosting the big dinner. I'll be spending the day over there helping with the meal so it's all ready when my mom arrives after work. I enjoy cooking, so I'm really looking forward to it!

Hope you had a great holiday weekend!

Finally got my last recommendation back... She really was leaving it to the last minute! So relieved that everything is finally done and in... But now the waiting really begins. Nothing left to do!

I really hope they're true to their January promise. The suspense is killing me already!


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

Anyone else out there in the application process for UVM's MEPN program for Fall 2011?


Has 1 years experience.

Anyone else out there in the application process for UVM's MEPN program for Fall 2011?

Yep, I applied in late October but NursingCAS took a long time to process everything so my application wasn't complete until late November. I chose the FNP track; FYI for anyone reading this, I also created a new UVM MEPN '11 thread in the VT Nursing Programs forum (UVM MEPN 2011 - Nursing for Nurses).

I was under the impression UVM would actually get less applications this year given it is their first year using NursingCAS and that service is notorious for being very slow in processing application material. But, I also understand it is a cash cow for UVM because anyone who already has all their material on nursingCAS will probably apply to every single school they can, so UVM will get lots of random applicants who normally wouldn't apply there.

I wasn't able to go to any of the open houses but I also heard they will not be doing interviews this year; this also sounds really strange to me given they've done it every other year.


Specializes in Transplant & HPB Surgery, Heme/Onc, LTC. Has 3 years experience.

My application went pretty quickly through the NursingCAS. I was still waiting on my transcripts and one reference after I submitted my app in late October, but as soon as they received those two pieces I got notification from them and from UVM within a couple of days. I applied for the FNP track as well. Have you applied to other programs?

I just discovered that a former classmate just finished her last semester of the program - we're going to connect after the holidays so I can pick her brain just in case I get an interview. She said she got in from the waitlist. I would be interested to know if the common app generates a flood of candidates or not. Even though it makes it easy to apply to a lot of programs, you still have to pay for each app. I'm hoping the $$ is a deterrent to less serious applicants.