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North Carolina DNP Doctorate of Nursing

If you’re a busy nurse who is interested in furthering your career and education, you’ll be glad to know that there are many different ways to earn your doctorate of nursing practice degree in North Carolina. Nurses who earn their DNP are leaders in their field. At this level, nurses have several career opportunities, including healthcare administration, advanced practice nursing, nursing management, nursing research, nursing education, and more.

A doctorate of nursing practice degree is different from a Ph.D. in nursing. While both degrees are valuable and well-recognized by the healthcare industry, a doctorate of nursing practice emphasizes the performance of advanced medical procedures and hands-on patient care. A Ph.D. is more research-focused and is often a better fit for nurses who want to move out of the direct care field.

If you love caring for your patients and want to take your career to the next level, earning your doctorate of nursing practice degree is a great way to open up many options for professional growth. In North Carolina, many schools provide nurses with different options to earn their DNP. Let’s take a look at some of the most popular DNP programs in the state of North Carolina.

1. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

UNC Chapel Hill’s DNP program has the goal of not only helping nurses achieve their goals in performing one-on-one patient care – they aim to help nurses develop their leadership skills to create positive change within healthcare organizations. The program emphasizes leadership, evidence-based practice, finance, health policy, and patient safety, all intending to improve patient outcomes.

  • Campus: Chapel Hill, North Carolina
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: Approximately $24,000 per year for in-state students, $41,000 per year for out-of-state students
  • Minimum time commitment: Two years
  • Online availability: Yes
  • Degree requirements: Applicants must have their BSN or MSN degree with a GPA of at least 3.0, an RN license, one year of paid experience as a nurse before the start date of the DNP program, successful completion of an undergraduate statistics course.
  • Programs: Students may specialize in adult/ gerontology, family, healthcare leadership and administration, pediatric, or psychiatric/ mental health.
  • School Site: The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – Doctor of Nursing Practice

2. Western Carolina University

Western Carolina University’s DNP program recognizes that nurses at the pinnacle of their careers are already experts in patient care – this program pushes nurses to be able to provide high leadership to others while analyzing patient care. Students in this program have access to faculty at the University of North Carolina and Western Carolina University, providing information from world-renowned healthcare education leaders for one cost.

  • Campus: Cullowhee, North Carolina
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: Approximately $8,000 per year for in-state students, $18,000 for out-of-state students
  • Minimum time commitment: Two years
  • Online availability: Some
  • Degree requirements: Applicants must have an MSN or similar graduate degree with a GPA of at least 3.5, an RN license, three letters of recommendation, and at least 500 hours of supervised nursing practice.
  • Programs: Doctor of Nursing Practice
  • School Site: WCU/UNC Charlotte Dual Doctor of Nursing Practice Program

3. Duke University

Duke University’s DNP program works to help nurses make informed, appropriate decisions for their patients by providing them with the latest evidence-based best practices in nursing. Many of the classes in this program are available online, making it easier for nurses who work busy schedules to further their education without having to take time away from work.

  • Campus: Durham, North Carolina
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: Approximately $1,800 per credit hour, the total number of credits will depend on prior experience and specialty
  • Minimum time commitment: Two years
  • Online availability: Yes
  • Degree requirements: Applicants must have a BSN or MSN with a GPA of at least 3.0, an RN license, successful completion of graduate-level inferential statistics and research methods courses, and three letters of recommendation.
  • Programs: Students may specialize in advanced specialty practice roles or healthcare leadership.
  • School Site: Duke University School of Nursing – Doctor of Nursing Practice

4. East Carolina University

East Carolina University’s DNP program provides nurses with the education they need to make a difference in healthcare outcomes, especially for patients in rural/ underserved areas. ECU’s DNP program places a large emphasis on personal research. Students receive one-on-one mentoring from faculty throughout their program to help guide their research.

  • Campus: Greenville, North Carolina
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: Approximately $1,300 per credit for in-state students, $3,000 per credit for out-of-state students
  • Minimum time commitment: Two years
  • Online availability: Yes
  • Degree requirements: Applicants must have their BSN or MSN, and are evaluated in five areas: GPA, GRE scores (if applicable), interview, references, and essay.
  • Programs: Students may specialize in advanced practice nursing roles, nurse anesthesia, or nursing leadership.
  • School Site: East Carolina University – Nursing Practice DNP

5. Winston-Salem State University

Winston-Salem State University is an HBCU that provides state of the art nursing education to nurses who are ready to further their careers. The program works with nurses to help them take the latest research and translate it into evidence-based care, positively affecting patient outcomes.

  • Campus: Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation: Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
  • Tuition: Varies based on program, please inquire.
  • Minimum time commitment: Two years
  • Online availability: Some
  • Degree requirements: Applicants must have their BSN or MSN with a GPA of at least 3.2, one year of experience as a registered nurse, an RN license, successful completion of a statistics and research course, at least three letters of recommendation, and an in-person interview.
  • Programs: Students have the option of two specialties: advanced practice nursing or family nurse practitioner.
  • School Site: Winston-Salem State University – Nursing Practice (DNP)