FNU launched its Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) program in January of 2017 and proudly presents the first two graduates of the program.
Kelly England, DNP, FNP-C, PMHNP graduate has accepted a position at an in-patient facility in Oro Valley, Ariz. Lisa Uribe, MSN, FNP-BC, PMHNP graduate has accepted a position at Palo Verde Behavioral Health Hospital in Tucson, Ariz.
England and Uribe are examples of the program’s early success and potential, thanks to talented students and the expertise of the FNU faculty. Both students entered as post graduate students as they both already were Family Nurse Practitioners. This allowed them to complete the program in just one year.
“’It has been an absolute pleasure to guide and educate our PMHNP students,” says Dr. Tracy Hicks, DNP. “The program is well structured with a wealth of information accessible to the students. The hands-on involvement with clinical sites is an asset to the program. I have learned a great deal in working with this diverse group of students who have much to offer to the psychiatric mental health community.”
While we celebrate these first graduates, many more will soon follow in their footsteps. The January 2017 class started with 19 students. Now, FNU is accepting 40 students per each quarterly term and there is a waitlist to be accepted to the program. FNU has PMHNP students in 40 different states. We are already seeing that Frontier Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioners are dedicated, hardworking, and destined to be future leaders in their field. Student Nicole Mutnansky, MSN, CNM, PMHNP Student Class 155 was chosen as an American Psychiatric Nurse Association (APNA) Scholar and subsequently requested to serve as a research assistant for the APNA Health Policy Summit.
The feedback from students has been overwhelmingly positive not only for the education they receive, but also for the confidence they gain as they implement their training in their daily work.
“I am more confident in my ability to care for patients with mental illness after taking the core courses,” says Rachel Houser, a student in the program. “I have learned valuable tools in this program that I plan on incorporating into practice to provide quality care for clients with serious mental illness.”
FNU is committed to supporting students like Houser with an excellent faculty. Growth of the program requires growth of the PMHNP faculty. Current faculty have expressed their pride in leading the program and in the success of the students.
“It has been my honor to develop and teach in the PMHNP program,” says Dr. Heather Shlosser, DNP, FNP-BC, PMHNP-BC. “I have the pleasure of working with excellent faculty and brilliant motivated students every day who are all striving to optimally meet the needs of the behavioral health population.”
One such student is Amy Dendinger, who has been inspired to open her own practice. “After returning from Frontier Bound this summer I was inspired, impressed, and empowered by Dr. Shlosser,” Dendinger says. “I have decided that I will open and own my own holistic women and children’s psychiatric practice and pursue my DNP at FNU. I am so excited to meet this challenge.”
Dr. Hedy Rougeau, DNP, a PMHNP faculty member at FNU, says that the already strong program will continue to grow and improve thanks to the expertise of the faculty and the dedication of the students. “The PMHNP program at FNU prepares students very well to become PMHNPs,” says Dr. Hedy Rougeau, DNP. “I truly enjoy working with the PMHNP students here. My job is very rewarding when I see how students progress. I appreciate how integrated the primary care mental health model is part of this PMHNP program. The PMHNP faculty support each other and we work closely together to continuously find ways to improve our PMHNP program.”
As this was my first completely online course as well as my first online school I wasn’t sure what to expect. I wasn’t sure if I could expect the same education as I had previously received in a traditional school. I must say that I believe I have received a much better education.” – PMHNP student Angela Astleford