LCU’s Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program was established and first began accepting students in summer of 2014. In spring 2016, the first class of eight students graduated at the master’s commencement ceremony.
Daniel Hatch, coordinator of the FNP program, said many of these eight graduates already have employment opportunities lined up once they complete their national board certification exams.
Currently, 36 students are active in various stages of the FNP program. Students from various areas of experience – intensive care, emergency care, pediatrics, flight nursing, surgical care, labor and delivery, and cardiology – are accepted into the program every summer.
The FNP program is based in face-to-face lectures and clinic experiences to prepare students to be advanced practice healthcare providers. Hatch listed the primary benefits of the FNP program at LCU:
- Small class size,
- Direct interaction with clinical experts
- Professors who are focused on each student's success, and
- LCU’s Christian environment.
The cohort model of the FNP program at LCU allows students to develop strong peer support systems in either a two-year full-time track or a three-year part-time track.
Additionally, during the program, students develop a healthcare project to address a community health need, such as: diabetic education, healthcare of the homeless, and food insecurities in rural children.
“The focus of the program is to increase accessibility to quality healthcare in rural and medically underserved communities in the Texas and New Mexico region,” Hatch said. “Nursing students who thrive in a personal, highly interactive, educational environment should consider the FNP program at LCU.”