Benefits Of Executive Leadership DNP Programs
The Executive Leadership DNP degree offers a curriculum that gives the student an opportunity to evaluate current nursing practice and find innovative ways to solve challenges in healthcare systems. Most programs include a capstone project which involves working with a faculty advisor and a qualified mentor to implement a rigorous, evidenced-based project. This project can be a year or two in development as the problem statement is refined, the evidence is collected, and resources are identified.
The Executive Leadership DNP will not immediately open doors to a top nursing role. Experience and a robust network of colleagues remain indispensable. If you are considering this degree for yourself, the perspective to consider will vary depending on your aspirations and current level in nursing.
Benefits for the nursing executive
Perhaps you are already a nursing executive. At this level, an ELDNP may best serve to validate your years of experience and demonstrate to your colleagues how nurses function at the doctorate level. The ELDNP strengthens you as an influencer and a role model and becomes a personal victory.
Benefits for nursing leaders
As a current nursing leader, but gazing a few rungs above you, the ELDNP may improve your abilities and teach you the advanced language of nursing administration. You will address highly complex healthcare system issues that you would not otherwise be able to tackle in your current role. You will become more comfortable identifying well-constructed research and implementing their results into your practice setting. Developing articulate proposals, managing projects, and evaluating quality outcomes are skills that your supervisors and executives will notice. This will provide the requisite experience and network of key individuals that will help you rise to top nursing positions.
Recent nursing graduates
Are you brand new to nursing or a freshly minted BSN, MSN, or MBA? The ELDNP may be premature to consider, but should absolutely be on your short list of future goals. Many ELDNP programs will only consider nurses in leadership roles. No amount of education can replace the actual experience of doing the work. Continue to read professional journals, find your passion in nursing leadership, and develop your network and mentors. After a few years, it should be clear whether the investment in an ELDNP is right for you.
Do you have an Executive Leadership DNP or are you a nurse leader thinking of pursuing an ELDNP? Please join the community and leave a comment. Share your perspective about how this degree has prepared or will prepare you as a nurse executive.
Barry J, Winter J. Health System Chief Nurse Executive, Is a DNP the Degree of Choice? Journal of Nursing Administration, 2015:45(11);527-528.