Master of Science: Clinical Nurse Specialist
Special program for RN's with a Bachelor's Degree in Non-Nursing Field
You may choose from two clinical tracks: Nurse Practitioner (NP) or Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS). Students studying to become nurse practitioners choose either the Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) or Family Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (FPMHNP) track. Students choosing to become CNS follow an adult medical surgical track.
A Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS) is a registered nurse with a master's degree who is a clinical expert in a particular specialty. The CNS focuses his or her specialty on a certain population (e.g., adults), type of problem (e.g., wound care), setting (e.g., Emergency Department), type of care (e.g., rehabilitation), or disease (e.g., diabetes).
The CNS offers expert clinical consultation and education for complicated cases. The CNS can design interventions to improve patient care and nursing outcomes.
CNS practice includes working with patients, nurses, and the overall health care system. On a personal level, CNSs can pursue the specialty that captivates their interest. They are valuable resource. They consult, mentor, manage cases, or perform research. They set a standard for clinically excellent care and serve as a problem solver for nursing staff.
Candidates with a bachelor's degree in a field other than nursing must meet the prerequisite requirements for all master's students, namely successful completion of two courses: health assessment and statistics. In addition, candidates complete three to four baccalaureate level courses or Excelsior College Exams (ECE), depending on work experience as an RN and prior course work, to fulfill prerequisites.
Fall Semester: May 1
Director of Master's Program
After becoming an RN with an associate’s degree, Ibrahim Thabet said, “I felt that my journey was not complete. I decided to continue my education at Upstate Medical University because of the school's rich tradition of prestige.
I could not have imagined an easier transition.” Ibrahim achieved his goal of becoming a Nurse Practitioner by earning his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the College of Nursing.—Ibrahim Thabet, FNP (2010)