In 2009 the New Mexico Higher Education Department conducted a study to evaluate the effectiveness of nursing care in New Mexico. They specifically studied the capacity of nursing programs offered by New Mexico's nursing schools, and developed incentives to encourage individuals to pursue nursing education. They provide supplemental funding in an attempt to raise the number of available qualified nursing applicants and supplemental compensation packages for nursing faculty.
The New Mexico Campaign for Action is a coalition of organizations and individuals who are working to advance nursing practice by completing a common curriculum plan for schools throughout the state to review and implement in 2014. They are particularly interested in encouraging associate degree nurses to get their BSN, which means they need more Nurse Educators. If you are ready to enter the field of nursing education, contact the schools that offer MSN or PhD programs in New Mexico to learn more.
New Mexico has several accredited online nursing education programs, which may work well for you if you are working or have family responsibilities. There are also ground based options to consider as well. Programs take about two years to complete if you attend full-time and four years if you go on a part-time basis.
The admissions criteria to enter a graduate nursing education program is similar for most universities and includes:
- Completed online application with fee
- Hold a bachelor's degree in nursing from an accredited college or university
- Must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 or higher
- Submit an unencumbered RN license
- Professional resume/CV
- Three letters of recommendation from professional people who are knowledgeable about the applicant's academic and nursing leadership potential
- Letter of intent
- Foreign students must pass the TOEFL exam if English is not their primary language
You will work closely with an advisor during the clinical courses in your program. The requirements of the New Mexico State Board of Nursing for faculty are designed to prepare you to ultimately assume positions in administration, consultation, research or policy development. This program can be completed in about 40 credits, and a full-time Nursing Education curriculum can include many or all of the following courses.
- Theoretical Foundations of Advance Nursing Practice
- Research and Nursing
- Pharmacological Principles of Clinical Therapeutics
- Health Care Policy, Systems and Financing for Advanced Practice
- Nurse Educator Roles and Professional Issues
- Pathophysiology for Advance Practice Nursing
- Teaching and Nursing
- Biophysical and Psychosocial Concepts in Health and Illness
- Advance Health Assessment for Nurse Educators
- Assessment and Evaluation of Learning and Nursing Education
- Curriculum Design and Program Evaluation
- Advance Nursing Fieldwork
- Clinical Specialty Practice
- Advance Nursing Fieldwork
- Professional Paper/Applied Exam
Once you have graduated you are eligible to take the credential examination from the National League for Nursing (NLN), which is a mark of professionalism called the Certified Nurse Educator (CNE).
The Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the mean annual income for New Mexico Nursing Instructors at $70,200 as of May 2013. There are other advantages to being a Nurse Educator in NM, such as flexible hours and job security. You may work in a college, hospital, clinic or other area that uses Nurse Educators.
You may be a nurse with a master's degree and ready to get your doctorate, which could be a PhD or a DNP. The PhD program prepares you to become a researcher and scholar in academia that makes an impact on health policy and health care settings. You would pursue an individualized plan of study or concentration. The Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) focuses on Nurse Organizational Leadership (NEOL). This type of program prepares you for leadership roles and the ability to create and evaluate innovations for healthcare.
If you need assistance with your tuition and expenses, visit the Financial Aid Office at your university to fill out the FALSA application, which is a federal grant program based on your income. The federal government also has low interest loans, grants and loan repayment programs through the Health Resources and Services Administration.
New Mexico has scholarships available that are merit based and for the disenfranchised. Nurse Corps is a loan repayment program for Nurse Educators that requires you to work for two years in a Critical Shortage facility to receive 60 percent of your qualifying student loans.
A Nurse Educator career may be a fulfilling choice for you, and you will also be helping nursing as a whole when you earn your graduate degree. Contact the schools on our site to learn more about how you can become a member of nursing faculty in New Mexico.