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The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) is an academic designation. The DNP is the first practice doctorate available for nurses. Practice doctorates apply knowledge gained from evidence-based practice to patient care. The DNP offered by Goshen College and Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) is a post-MSN, two-year program (33 credit hours, 10 courses).

The DNP is a practice doctorate, not a research doctorate. Rather than writing a dissertation based on original research, the DNP graduate completes an evidence-based practice (EBP) project. This project requires that the student spend a significant amount of time examining an EBP question based on the student’s specific area of interest. Students might choose to focus their DNP project on the care of individuals, aggregate, systems or organizational level. The DNP educates nurses to improve safety, effectiveness and efficiency in patient care. Essentially, the DNP graduate translates evidence into a project that influences their practice and effects change in the healthcare setting.

Students may enroll at either Eastern Mennonite University or Goshen College, and their diploma will reflect that choice.

Mission, Vision, and Values

Although rooted in the Anabaptist-Mennonite traditions of peacemaking, service, and community, the majority of EMU nursing students do not belong to the Mennonite Church USA. In fact, students enrolled across EMU nursing programs and beyond represent a wide range of faith traditions, including students who choose not to embrace a particular faith.

Regardless of your beliefs, you are welcome here!

Our values strongly inform the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) curriculum, offering a unique and nuanced approach to nursing and spirituality. You will find the program emphasizes:

  • Servant leadership
  • Innovative problem-solving
  • Intercultural competency

EMU nursing programs are unique in their holistic view of nursing as a calling to service to others. We believe that nurses and patients form mutually-beneficial bonds, each providing gifts to the other. This relationship is echoed in the student-teacher dynamic, again, with one providing benefit to the other. We call this approach to nursing practice and higher education the Sacred Covenant Model of Nursing.


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