Getting an advanced nursing degree can be a great way to increase your salary potential, develop professionally, and create more career opportunities. It can also be a way to build new skills while challenging yourself to learn new things. The master’s degree in nursing leadership is an example of one such program that can allow you to grow career-wise and professionally. It is offered at several California universities and may help you qualify for leadership careers in many different healthcare organizations.
According to O*Net Online, careers that one can obtain with a degree in nursing leadership fall under the category of Medical and Health Services Managers. Job titles might include nurse manager, nursing director, clinical director, or more depending on the organization. The salary of individuals within these careers is about $104,830 annually, and the job outlook is at about 11%, which is much faster than average.
This career involves increasing high-quality care that prioritizes both patient safety and the objectives of their organization. It also includes ensuring that nurses are maintaining high-quality care by following protocols and procedures.
When deciding on what university you want to attend, the school’s accreditation status is important to consider. An accredited university means that their programs have met certain quality standards and provides their students with an adequate education that is in line with the requirements needed to prepare students for their clinical exams. Accreditation may have an impact on the quality of education you receive and your future career. Many employers prefer that the person they hire received their education from an accredited institution. There are two main accrediting bodies for nursing programs: the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), and the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). The main difference between these two organizations is that the CCNE solely accredits programs at the bachelor’s and graduate level, while the ACEN accredits all nursing program levels.
Below is an overview of universities in California that offer a master’s degree in Nursing Leadership.
University of San Diego – MSN in Executive Nurse Leadership
University of San Diego’s MSN in Nurse leadership is designed to accommodate working professionals through their flexible hybrid format. The program requires the completion of 36 units. 24 of these units go towards the specific nursing leadership components, while nine units cover the core MSN components. Requirements to enroll include that the applicant should have earned a bachelor’s of science in nursing, have a 3.0 GPA in the BSN program, and have included a basic statistics course. Additional application requirements are included on the university website. The MSN program at SDSU is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
CSU Fullerton – MSN in Nursing Leadership
The MSN in Nursing Leadership at CSU Fullerton teaches students how to become leaders that promote professionalism and work to improve health outcomes for patients at a variety of heathcare organizations. The skills that students gain will allow them to work at different levels in the system, including quality improvement, administration and risk management. To earn the degree, students will complete 36 semester units over two years of part-time study. The MSN program at CSU Fullerton is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
Western Governors University – MSN in Nursing Leadership and Management
Western Governors University offers a BSN-to-MSN program with a concentration in Nursing Leadership and Management. This program is designed for nurses with a bachelor’s degree in nursing who want to expand their career opportunities to administrative and managerial roles, or those who want to engage in professional development. The program is completed online, but students will also receive hands-on experiences through the required practicum and innovative simulations. 15 courses will be completed in total along with fieldwork in a local facility. The MSN program at Western Governors University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
Azusa Pacific University – MSN in Healthcare Administration and Leadership
The MSN in Health Care Administration and Leadership at APU is offered 100% online. It is intended for registered nurses who have a bachelor’s degree who want to become leaders to advance their career and make a difference in the healthcare field. Some classes are offered on-campus as well if desired. To earn the degree, students are required to complete 37 units. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education has accredited APU’s MSN program. The MSN program at Azusa Pacific University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
San Diego State University – MSN in Leadership in Health Care Systems
The Master of Science in Nursing program at San Diego State University offers a Leadership in Health Care Systems concentration. There are two formats offered for the program: a two-year, full time version, or a three year, part-time version. In either program, a student will complete 36 units. Students will take a variety of courses in subjects such leadership and financial management, and will also complete a practicum where they can apply their skills to real-life scenarios. The MSN program at San Diego State University is accredited by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN).
United States University – MSN in Health Care Leadership
The MSN in Health Care Leadership at United States University is 30 units and can be completed in 24 months. There is also a 12-month accelerated pathway option.Students will also complete a residency and demonstrate their application of knowledge through a capstone project. There are courses such as nurse leadership, practice theory, safety, and health policy. These courses include elements that help students become leaders who can adapt to a changing healthcare system while increasing patient care. The MSN program at United States University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
West Coast University – MSN: Nurse Leader Track
The MSN – Nurse Leader program at WCU is accredited by the CCNE and helps students become skilled as medical leaders. There are multiple start dates for this program throughout the year due to eight-week course sessions. Courses take place online so students have the flexibility to complete work anywhere. The program is 135 credits total and can be completed over 16 months. There is also a version designed for working professionals that can be completed over 32 months. The MSN program at West Coast University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
Western University of Health Sciences – MSN in Health Systems Leadership: Clinical Nurse Leader
Western University of Health Sciences features a Master of Science program with a Health Systems Leadership: Clinical Nurse Leader track. The program is designed for working nurses who have earned a bachelor’s degree and want to keep working while enrolling in a master’s program. The curriculum takes place primarily online, although students are required to visit the campus twice per semester to attend seminars. The program is 40 units and can be completed in two years of full-time study, or part-time. The MSN program at Western University of Health Sciences is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
California Southern University – MSN: Nurse Executive Leader Concentration
Students can earn a Master of Science in Nursing at CSU with a Nurse Executive Leader Concentration that provides students with the knowledge to provide more advanced evidence-based care in healthcare organizations. Students will gain the necessary knowledge to care for diverse patients at many socioeconomic levels. The program requires the completion of 36 credits. Students can complete these credits in about two years of full-time study. The MSN program at California Southern University is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
California Masters in Nursing Administration
In addition to the MSN in Nursing Leadership programs, there are also multiple universities in California that offer a similar master’s degree: Nursing Administration. This degree may allow you to take on similar roles within your chosen healthcare organization, with a similar income as well, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The schools offering these degrees are below.
CSU Dominguez Hills – MSN Nurse Administrator
CSU Dominguez Hills offers an MSN in Nursing Administration that is intended for working registered nurses, and is offered asynchronously online. The program is 30 units total, where 15 of the units are related to administration, and 15 units teach core nursing knowledge. Students will apply their knowledge to a 288-hour internship. In total, the program is typically completed over two years of part-time study. There is also an accelerated version of the program available that takes two semesters to complete. The MSN program at CSU Dominguez Hills is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).
CSU East Bay – MSN with a Nursing Leadership and Administration Concentration
CSU East Bay is a low-cost state university that offers their MSN in Nursing Leadership and Administration in a hybrid format. The program can be completed in four semesters and is 33 units. In the program, students will gain skills to work in a number of healthcare organizations in administrative or other leadership roles to improve patient’s quality of care. The MSN program at CSU East Bay is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).