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5 Important Things to Know About MEPN Programs

Published on: August 19, 2022

The health needs of humanity are growing — and so is the demand for caring, qualified nursing professionals. A career in nursing provides individuals with the opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others every single day. Nurses affect the health of individuals, families, and entire communities. Whether your passion lies in education, systems management, or patient care, nursing offers a career path for you.

If you're interested in pursuing a career in nursing but have a degree in another field, a MEPN program might be the right fit for you. So what can you expect from this unconventional degree path?

What is MEPN?

The Master’s Entry Program in Nursing is a direct-entry nursing program designed for those aspiring to become a nurse, but have a baccalaureate degree or higher in another discipline. This accelerated program allows students without prior nursing experience to earn their Master of Science in Nursing in under three years. MEPN students come from diverse backgrounds and professions but have one thing in common — a passion for serving the health care needs of others. Students should be prepared to work hard as programs are often intense and fast-paced, just like the field of nursing.

MEPN nurse assisting child

5 Things to Keep in Mind When Considering a MEPN Program

1. MEPN programs are highly competitive.
Generally, MEPN programs are comprised of small cohorts of students, which means spots are limited. To stand out from the pool of other applicants, you’ll want to put your best foot forward. Pay attention to program requirements and get started early on application materials. Utilize your network to help you with letters of recommendation or to help review your materials. Finally, have any prerequisites coursework completed before you apply. 

2. Most programs have prerequisites.

Due to the accelerated nature of MEPN programs, you’ll be required to have some basic coursework finished before you begin working toward your MSN. Common prerequisite courses include:

  1. General chemistry
  2. Human anatomy and physiology
  3. Microbiology
  4. Statistics
  5. Nutrition

View the full list of prerequisite courses for the University of San Diego's Master's Entry Program in Nursing.

3. You may have to forgo a full-time job.

Programs are fast-paced and intense. Think about it: You will be completing a BSN and an MSN in 2-3 years! They will be a full-time commitment and are not offered as part-time programs. You may need to make plans to not have a full-time job for the duration of the program. If you need to work, now is a good time to start exploring part-time opportunities that won’t interfere with your course load.

4. You will participate in clinical rotations. 

Students in a MEPN program have clinical rotations that are the same as those of all pre-licensure nursing programs. These rotations focus on the care of patients in medical/surgical, maternal/newborn, pediatric, psychiatric, and geriatric as well as community settings. You’ll build the hands-on skills needed to work with patients and handle any situation that may come your way. 

5. The curriculum will prepare you for a variety of nursing roles.

Graduates of MEPN programs are nursing generalists who are well versed in core competencies of the nursing profession. After successful completion of the program, students receive a master’s degree in nursing and are eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for registered nurse (RN) licensure.

In addition to a strong general foundation, the master’s-level coursework provides the skills necessary to serve in leadership positions. An MSN degree opens the door to future specializations in the nursing field so that you can focus your career on what matters to you.

Accelerate Your Nursing Career with USD's MEPN Program

At USD, it’s never too late to pursue your passion for meeting the health needs of humanity. Our 21-month Master's Entry Program in Nursing admits students every fall to embark on the life-changing journey that is becoming a nurse. We invite you to request more information on our MEPN program, read program FAQs, or start your application today.

A Guide to the Master's Entry Program in Nursing (for non-RNs) at USD

The University of San Diego's direct entry msn nursing program ranks among the best in the nation. But that's not the only reason future students walk through our doors to pursue one of our graduate degrees. Download our guide for an in-depth look at the Master's Entry Program in Nursing and how our rich heritage of excellence in nursing education can help you achieve your academic and professional goals.

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A Guide to Achieving the Master of Science in Nursing at USD

For future Executive Nurse Leaders, Nursing Informaticists, or Adult-Gerontology CNSs.

Get the Guide

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