Overview of Montana Nurse Practitioner Programs and Careers
Within the remote state of Montana, many communities lack access to primary care services. When you become a nurse practitioner, you may be able to tackle this problem and help residents get the care they need. Nurse practitioner programs in Montana build on your undergraduate nursing education. Explore different programs, their clinical requirements and career options in Montana. When you’re ready to get started, search for schools above or browse the featured schools listed below.
If you enjoy the time you spend with patients and you’d like to take on a more independent role in patient care, you could be a good fit for nurse practitioner programs. Online and Montana schools have options for registered nurses who are ready to take the next step in their career.
How Can I Become a Nurse Practitioner in Montana?
You may become licensed with a Master’s degree or a doctoral degree. You can compare these programs below:
Requirements for Master’s NP Degrees
- Credit hours required: 40 to 50 credit hours
- Average cost: $1,000 per credit
- Clinical hours required: At least 500 clinical hours
- Timeframe: 3 years
Requirements for Doctoral NP Degrees
- Credit hours required: 80 credits
- Clinical hours required: At least 1,000 clinical hours
- Timeframe: Four years
Types of Nurse Practitioner Programs Available in Montana
As a Montana student, you may have several NP schooling options to consider. In addition to standard in-person programs, you may evaluate online nursing schools. At these schools, you can complete your theory education online while working with local facilities to meet your clinical expectations.
Depending on which type of degree you plan on earning, you need at least 500 or 1000 clinical hours, so it is crucial to get the right type of experience.
Your coursework is influenced by your choice of degree. Family nurse practitioner programs provide a diverse selection of experiences to students, allowing them to effectively work with many different patients. Montana schools also offer psychiatric-mental health programs, which may require clinical work in outpatient mental health centers, inpatient mental health centers, and emergency rooms.
Nurse Practitioner Degrees: Common Montana Courses
- Advanced Health Assessment
- Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology
- Evidence-Based Practice
- Advanced Pharmacology
- Diagnostic Reasoning
- Design of Healthcare Delivery Systems
- Advanced Practice Nursing Leadership
- Healthcare Informatics
- Healthcare Law, Ethics, and Policy
- Program Planning and Evaluation
Nurse practitioner programs build on your core healthcare skills and advance your critical thinking skills, empowering you to take on the role of primary care provider. This is clearly outlined in each school’s learning outcomes, another resource that can help students find a school that is a perfect fit for them.
How Can I Pay for Nurse Practitioner School in Montana?
- Back to School Nursing Scholarship: Four times per year, the team at BestNursingDegree.com awards $2,500 scholarships to selected students.
- NURSE Corps Scholarship Program: Each year, this federal program selects students for large scholarships. Selected applicants must work for two years in a Health Professional Shortage Area after graduation; failing to meet this requirement may require the grant to be repaid.
- NHSC Loan Repayment Program: Find out if you can reduce your student loan burden with this program, which pays off up to $50,000 of loans for students who spend two years in an NHSC-approved area.
- Billings Clinic: Billings Clinic is one of many local employers that awards work commitment scholarships. If you are selected for one of these, you need to agree to work for your employer for a set period of time.
Licensing and Practice Requirements for NPs in Montana
One of the benefits of studying in Montana is the fact that Montana nurse practitioners enjoy full freedom of practice (AANP, 2016). To get to this point, you must become licensed by the Montana Board of Nursing. You need a valid nursing license, a Master’s or doctoral degree in nursing, and national certification.
Nurse Practitioner Careers in Montana
The hard work you put into your nurse practitioner education may pay off when you are ready to explore career opportunities in this area. Some graduates decide to stay with their current place of employment, particularly if their seniority may allow them a higher starting salary. You may explore options at nursing homes, clinics, hospitals, and other healthcare settings.
In Montana, the need for medical professionals is extremely high. Between 2014 and 2024, O*Net predicts a 32% increase in job openings for nurse practitioners (2016). The average salary for a nurse practitioner in this state is $94,720 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016).
Selected Nurse Practitioner Programs for Montana Nurses
- Montana State University. The master’s-level family nurse practitioner program at Montana State includes a special emphasis on rural nursing, issues of rurality and rural healthcare systems. The program can be completed in two or four years.
- Georgetown University. Though located in Washington, D.C., Georgetown University offers two online NP programs that are accessible to nurses in Idaho. Students can select either a Family Nurse Practitioner program or the Nurse Midwifery/Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner program. Classes are web-based, and Georgetown faculty work with students to arrange clinical experiences close to home.
- Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing. The Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing is physically located in Kentucky, but the school, a leader in distance education, has long helped graduates become nursing leaders within their home communities. Frontier offers a master-level, community-based Family Nurse Practitioner program that provides a strong emphasis on the business of primary care. The school also offers DNP-level Family Nurse Practitioner and Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner programs.