South Carolina Nurse Practitioner Programs
As more people get health insurance, many states have experienced an increase in demand for primary care providers. This is true in South Carolina, where nurse practitioners can make a difference in urban and rural communities. Keep reading to explore educational options for nurse practitioners, job options and practice settings. When you’re ready to take the next step, search for schools above or check out our list of featured nurse practitioner programs in South Carolina.
While the demand for registered nurses continues to grow throughout South Carolina, changes in healthcare have also increased the need for graduate-level nurses in different specialties and roles. With nurse practitioner programs, SC students and registered nurses may be able to earn an advanced license.
How Can I Become a Nurse Practitioner in South Carolina?
You can meet state licensing requirements with a Master’s degree or a doctoral degree. Find out if a nurse practitioner degree can take your career to the next level.
Average Master’s Degree Requirements in South Carolina
- Credit hours required: 45 credit hours
- Average cost: $800 per credit hour
- Clinical hours required: At least 500 hours; generally closer to 700-800 hours
- Timeframe: Two years
Average Doctoral Requirements in South Carolina
- Credit hours required: 80 credit hours
- Clinical hours required: At least 1,000 hours
- Timeframe: Five years
Nurse Practitioner Schooling Options in South Carolina?
There are many similarities between Master’s programs and doctoral programs. However, if you pursue a doctoral degree, plan on completing approximately twice as many clinical hours and exploring advanced care roles in your education.
Since there are many nursing schools in South Carolina, you may choose from a wide variety of areas of practice. Options in this state include family health, adult health, pediatric care, gerontological care, psychiatric care, and women’s health.
One option to consider is an online nurse practitioner degree. This type of program is much more flexible for working students, giving you the freedom to complete readings, projects, and video lectures on your schedule, as long as you stick to the overall course schedule.
If you want to look into FNP programs online, note that you still need to meet the same clinical requirements as traditional students, so you will need to arrange for clinical experiences at local healthcare facilities.
Common Course Options in South Carolina
- Theoretical and Conceptual Foundation for Nursing
- Advanced Pathophysiology for Nurses
- Pharmacologic Management in Healthcare
- Family and Community Health Nursing
- Advanced Health Assessment
- Diagnostic Interpretation and Therapeutic Modalities
- Primary Care Nursing of Children
- Management of Chronic Diseases
The courses listed above are often part of your core curriculum, which means that all advanced nursing students must take them. It’s important to look at the courses unique to your area of study, since these address topics that are relevant to your patient population and give insight into their care needs.
Financial Aid and Scholarships for Nurse Practitioners in SC
- BestNursingDegree.com: We have a scholarship program that runs year-round. Awards are given four times per year, so no matter when you find out about the scholarship, there is a scholarship cycle open.
- NHSC Loan Repayment Program: If you have student loans from your undergraduate or graduate degree, start paying them off with a program like this one. Students work full-time at an NHSC-approved site for two years in order to have up to $50,000 of loans repaid.
- NURSE Corps Scholarship Program: Students receive a scholarship while still in school if they are accepted into this program. However, they must then spend two years working in a Health Professional Shortage Area to avoid having to repay the scholarship.
- South Carolina Nurses Association: As a member of this group, you may apply for general nursing scholarships and those that are only open to graduate nursing students.
Licensing and Practice Requirements for NPs in South Carolina
Nurse practitioner schools SC options should prepare graduates for the licensing requirements of this state. The South Carolina Board of Nursing requires a current nursing license, a graduate degree, and national certification.
While South Carolina currently restricts the practice rights of nurse practitioners, this may change in the future as advocates continue to fight for full practice rights (AANP, 2016).
Nurse Practitioner Careers in South Carolina
The future looks bright for nurses at different levels of education and training. Between 2014 and 2024, demand for nurse practitioners may increase 32% in South Carolina (O*Net, 2016).
The average salary for a South Carolina nurse practitioner is $91,440 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016). Your income and job outlook may depend on your area of specialty and which work setting best suits you.
For example, if you focus on acute care during your degree, you made find that you prefer urgent care centers and emergency care centers. If you specialize in primary care, you may look into opening your own clinic or working in an established clinic.
This is the time to find out how an advanced nursing degree could change your life.
Selecting a SC School to Earn Your NP Degree
As you look into your options for NP school, keep in mind that there are many programs that now offer online and distance education options, allowing you to complete your degree on your own timeline, and in often completing clinical requirements nearby. NP programs for South Carolina nurses include:
- Clemson University. NP students at Clemson gain primary care experience by caring for individuals of all ages during their clinical experiences. Students can ultimately choose to pursue certification as a family nurse practitioner, adult nurse practitioner or gerontology nurse practitioner. Clemson also gives its NP students the opportunity to study healthcare genetics.
- Medical University of South Carolina. MUSC offers a variety of master’s-level online NP programs, including family nurse practitioner, pediatric nurse practitioner and adult-gerontology nurse practitioner. Minimal travel to campus is required to complete the program.
- University of South Carolina. Currently, students can choose from either the MSN-level or DNP-level nurse practitioner programs at the University of South Carolina. The school was the first in South Carolina to offer a DNP program. Students can choose to focus on either acute care or primary care.
Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. also offers an online NP program that is available to South Carolina nurses.