An affordable, fast-track, Best Value master’s program for RNs interested in healthcare administration, nursing leadership, and policy – and all the benefits an advanced degree confers.

Best Value MSN logo Overview:

  • #2-in-the-nation program (US News & World Report, 2020)
  • #3-in-the-nation "Best Value" master's program (Value Colleges)
  • 90% of current CNL students receive an annual $650,000 UVA Nursing financial aid
  • Virginia residents admitted to the CNL program may apply for additional funding through the Conway Scholars program
  • Part-time program
  • Graduates are eligible for the CNL certification exam
  • Application deadline: December 1 for entry the following fall

Who should apply?

Unlike a typical two-year master's degree program or the traditional CNL program, the RN to CNL program offers experienced nurses a fast-track to a master's degree with the flexibility of part-time study. The program takes into account nurses' education, career and life experiences as they prepare for leadership roles in nursing and health care, and these UVA grads are well-positioned to continue their education in either the clinical specialty, with a PhD, or in whatever role or setting they choose.

With their wealth of professional and scholarly experience, RN to CNL grads tend to rise rapidly in health care communities as clinicians, team-leaders, patient care coordinators, client advocates, outcomes manager, and systems analysts.

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Our Approach

  • Lessons in resilience—a distinctive focus on teaching resilience and compassion in coursework and extra-curriculars, cultivating nurses who understand that self-care is key to safe, high-quality care and professional longevity
  • Global opportunities—at multiple sites across three continents, CNLs may take part in sustained global engagement to learn, conduct research and mentor others
  • Affordability—RN to CNL students may be eligible for tuition benefits from their hospital systems
  • Interprofessional learning—course content is deepened as students regularly collaborate and practice across professions—including work with medical students, physicians, respiratory therapists, PTs and OTs, social workers, and chaplains—through UVA’s interprofessional education hub, the Center for ASPIRE

Admission Requirements

To be considered for the CNL for RN, applicants must:

  • Submit a completed application and an $85 application fee
  • Have a Bachelor's degree and an ADN degree, or diploma from a regionally accredited school
  • Have a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale)
  • Have successfully completed a college-level course in statistics within five years of the program start
  • Submit three satisfactory academic and professional recommendations
  • Complete two essays
  • Submit a resume or CV
  • A license as a registered nurse in the US, with eligibility to transfer the license to Virginia; students must have an unencumbered RN license in Virginia before the first day of classes
  • Be available for an interview, if requested
  • International applicants have additional admission requirements

The most competitive applicants have a cumulative GPA of 3.25 or higher in nursing and non-nursing degrees, have experience in quality improvement projects and excellent writing skills.

Applicants with ADN or BSN degrees should apply for the fall semester, and request change to enroll in the summer session after admitted, if planning to enroll in summer classes.

Financial Aid

Click here for tuition information.

RN-to-CNL students may be eligible for tuition benefits from their hospital systems.

Classes

Plans of study

Clinicals

In the final semester, students identify a clinical focus area for completion of an extended clinical practicum, followed by the CNL residency practicum. Clinical experiences will be offered at the UVA Medical Center, at other facilities and settings in the Charlottesville area and selected global placements.

Technology requirements

All graduate nursing students are required to have a laptop; Information about these requirements will be sent to enrolling students before classes begin.

The Undergraduate Record and Graduate Record is the official repository for academic program requirements.