How nursing schools are tackling high nurse practitioner demand 

Nursing schools are enacting changes to their programs to meet the high demand for nurse practitioners, Fortune reported Sept. 27. 

The nation is expected to see a 46 percent increase in the demand for nurse practitioners by 2031, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. A 2018 requirement from the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties will set a doctorate in nursing as the new entry-level nurse practitioner education standard by 2025. 

"Now there are an increasing number of programs that are moving to the DNP because of this mandate," Debora Dole, vice dean of academic affairs at the top-ranked Georgetown University School of Nursing in Washington, D.C., told Fortune. "But, the master’s degree isn’t going away anytime soon, as there are quite a number of programs out there that are master’s level."

Online nursing programs have caused schools to build relationships with sites across the nation to provide students with opportunities to satisfy their clinical hour requiriements. Distance learning has also proven to be beneficial for students, according to Ms. Dole. 

"I think you can argue the benefit to having a distance program is that your students can come from anywhere and they go back to their communities, and they get a Georgetown education, complete with Georgetown values," she said. "Our faculty also are located all over the United States, but they come together on campus multiple times over the years—so in my view, it’s the best of all worlds."

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