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Doctor of Nursing Practice: Executive Leadership

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The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) at Felician University prepares students to integrate nursing science as the basis for the highest level of nursing practice. Students are prepared through organizational and systems leadership to utilize systems thinking as a framework for quality improvement initiatives and organizational change initiatives, and critically analyze current evidence to improve practice.

The DNP features a carefully constructed curriculum based upon the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s (AACN) Essentials of Doctoral Education for Advanced Nursing Practice and the American Organization of Nurse Executive’s (AONE) core competencies for nurse executives. In eight 12 week sessions, spanning just over two years, students can complete the 40 credits and designated practicum hours for their DNP project to earn their doctorate. The theoretical content of the program is offered online via computer-mediated instruction from faculty certified in distance education, providing an education experience that offers flexibility and convenience to working professionals. The program features two on-campus, credit-bearing residencies, providing periods of close work and personal attention with our committed faculty.

Students choose to complete a track which focuses either on Advanced Practice or Executive Leadership, preparing them for leadership roles in a variety of settings. The curriculum culminates in an intensive and rigorous DNP project which emphasizes key competence areas. These include translation of research, evaluation of evidence, application of clinical innovations to advance healthcare delivery, and dissemination of knowledge to improve healthcare outcomes.

Graduates of Felician's Master of Science in Nursing: Executive Leadership track  Adult-Gerontology, or Family Nurse Practitioner track who meet academic requirements enjoy a seamless transition into the DNP program and can transfer up to six credits from their master’s program toward completion of the DNP.

Doctor of Nursing Practice: Executive Leadership Track

Doctoral students in the Executive Leadership track develop real experience enacting a change project within a healthcare organization, building experience and skill in leadership, project management, financial planning, informatics, and technological skills. Evidence-based, transformational leadership is stressed to provide graduates with experience as agents of positive change.

Program Outcomes

Graduates will confidently analyze various informatics systems for the delivery of healthcare, and be equipped to implement health policy initiatives that focus on clinical prevention and population health for vulnerable populations. Graduates of the program are prepared to apply core knowledge in scientific theory, conceptual models and knowledge construction; organizational and leadership management for quality and safety in healthcare systems; business and financial resource management; healthcare advocacy in global political and social systems; and information technology to improve healthcare outcomes.

Graduates of the program will:
  • Integrate nursing science and theories from other disciplines in the development and evaluation of new practice approaches which will improve health care delivery.
  • Effect changes in clinical nursing practice through organizational and systems leadership utilizing systems theory as a framework for quality improvement.
  • Critically analyze current evidence to implement quality improvement modalities to promote effective, efficient and safe patient centered care.
  • Utilize information systems and technology to improve and transform health care which contributes to improved patient outcomes.
  • Implement health policy initiatives which focus on clinical prevention and optimal health for vulnerable populations while advocating for social justice, equity, and ethical polices in health care.
  • Collaborate with all members of the health care team to improve patient-centered care and to benchmark outcomes and quality improvement initiatives.
  • Implement and analyze clinical prevention and intervention initiatives for diverse populations in order to effect improvement in the nation’s health.
  • Advance the nursing profession through leadership initiatives which support other nurses to achieve excellence in advanced nursing practice.
  • Lead with ethical comportment in all aspects of advanced nursing practice.

Admission Requirements

  • A completed application.
  • Submission of all official academic transcripts from previously attended college(s)/university(ies).
  • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in graduate coursework
  • Licensure as a registered professional nurse in New Jersey. The licensee cannot have any pending disciplinary action against their nursing license from any Board of Nursing.
  • Successful completion of an undergraduate or graduate level statistics course and a graduate level nursing research course.
  • Two professional letters of recommendation supporting the applicant’s potential to succeed in a doctoral program.
  • International academic credentials are reviewed by an international accrediting agency (World Education Services) on an individual basis.
  • A minimum score of 79 in the Internet-based TOEFL or 550on the paper-based TOEFL is required of graduates of non- English speaking countries.
  • Curriculum vitae.
  • A 2-3 page essay which includes professional goals that are congruent with the selected program of doctoral study. Within the essay, present a scholarly project proposal which identifies a potential scholarly practice inquiry project related to an area of professional expertise or interest. The project proposal should address relevancy to the selected program of study and planned implementation to effect practice change at the organizational, system, local, regional or national level for improving patient and population health outcomes.
  • A notarized copy of the photo page of a government-issued identification such as passport or driver’s license. 
  • Criminal history background check(s) or other requirements mandated by the practicum site.
  • Personal Interview
  • A Master’s degree in nursing or related field (i.e., MBA, MPA, MHA).
  • Portfolio assessment (May indicate need for additional coursework).
  • Current professional practice in the Nurse Executive role.

Contact Information

Please contact the Office of Graduate Admission should you wish to speak with a counselor about applying to the Doctor of Nursing Practice Program. We can be reached via email, or by calling us directly at 201-355-1465. 

Dr. Margaret Daingerfield, Associate Dean and Director of the DNP Program, can be reached via email, or by calling 201-559-6151. Dr. Marie Cueman, Chair of the Executive Leadership Track, can be reached via email or by calling  201-559-6000 extension 6256.