Post Graduate APRN Certificates


The Post Graduate APRN Certificates are delivered through NMSU-Online

This program is for currently certified Master’s or doctorally-prepared nurse practitioners, certified nurse midwives, and certified registered nurse anesthetists who wish to obtain the coursework and clinical training needed to sit for certification in another specialty.

A Post Graduate APRN Certificate consists of 18 credits, which includes a minimum of 500 clinical hours. Please note that the clinical hours are required for national certification and cannot be waived or negotiated. All didactic courses for the Post Graduate Certificate are delivered through a combination of synchronous and asynchronous distance education.

The School of Nursing offers the Post-Graduate APRN Certificate in the following specialty tracks: Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. 


The Application Deadline for the 2021 Cohort is March 15, 2021


Post-Graduate APRN Certificate Degree Plans

Students admitted in Fall 2020

Students admitted in Fall 2021


Program Information

The following are criteria for certificate program enrollment:

  • Applicants must follow the degree plan for their specialty area
  • Students are required to attend a 2-day on-campus orientation during the first week of classes in Fall semester. (Note - On campus events have been moved to virtual settings until further notice.)
  • Students are required to attend a week-long, on-campus Clinical Boot Camp during the summer semester prior to the start of the program. (Note - On campus events have been moved to virtual settings until further notice.)
  • Prior to starting clinical rotations, students will be required to submit a criminal background check and toxicology screen (medicinal marijuana is prohibited) and other clinical clearance requirements outlined in the DNP and Post Graduate APRN Certificate Student Handbook. Failure to provide these items will result in a failure to progress or program dismissal. Positive toxicology results and/or criminal background checks that do not meet NMSU School of Nursing clinical clearance requirements can result in program dismissal.
  • While course faculty can assist in the identification of qualified clinical preceptors, it is ultimately the responsibility of the student to secure sites and preceptors for their clinical practica.
  • Prior to conducting a practicum at a facility, an affiliation agreement between the facility and the NMSU School of Nursing must be in place. 
  • Please be aware that it can take 2-6 months to establish an affiliation agreement, if one is not already in place.
  • Students will receive additional information about clinical courses upon acceptance to the program. 

Application Process and Admission Criteria

  • Apply to the Post-Graduate APRN Certificate Program and through the NMSU Graduate School and select “Graduate Certificate” in the application system.
  • Upload the following documents to the online application:
    • Current CV/resume
    • Nurse practitioner or other APRN certification
    • Unofficial transcripts from nursing programs/degrees
    • A letter of intent specifying career goals and a clear statement of how the certificate will advance the applicant’s clinical practice
    • Names and contact information for three (3) references from colleagues in clinical practice
  • Official transcripts from all prior college and universities attended sent directly to the School of Nursing and to the NMSU Graduate School (2 sets)
  • After an initial review of applications, selected applicants will be invited to attend an interview with faculty (on campus or via videoconferencing).
  • Successful admission to the NMSU Graduate School
  • To be eligible for the Post-Graduate APRN Certificate Program, an applicant must possess an active and current APRN license and certification as a nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, certified registered nurse anesthetist or clinical nurse specialist
  • Master's degree in Nursing or DNP degree with a minimum GPA of 3.0 or better
  • Completion of Advanced Health Assessment, Advanced Pathophysiology, and Advanced Pharmacology courses (must be across the life-span)
  • Admission to the Post-Graduate APRN Certificate Program is a competitive process based on the components of the application and interview
  • Students are required to obtain official documentation or letter from the MSN or DNP program that they attended clearly denoting the total number of clinical hours completed

SARA Authorization Information-

In order for New Mexico State University (NMSU) to enroll students residing outside of New Mexico in an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) distance education program, two conditions must be met. First, NMSU must have a State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement with the state that the student physically resides in. To check your state, please refer to NMSU’s SARA map. Second, the state’s Board of Nursing must give approval or have no restrictions on APRN clinical education in the state where the student will complete their clinical training. For more information and for current APRN distance education requirements, please see the National Council on State Boards of Nursing website.

The New Mexico State University School of Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) and Post Graduate APRN Certificate programs are currently authorized to operate, exempt or not subject to approval in:

  • District of Columbia
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • Oregon (application pending)
  • Rhode Island
  • Texas (application pending)
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • Washington
  • Wyoming

The New Mexico State University School of Nursing will continue to monitor developments in state laws in each state in which it enrolls students and, if authorization or licensure is or becomes necessary, will obtain such additional approvals.


Interested applicants should contact:

  • Karen Pech, SON Graduate Advisor
  • Phone: 575-646-7770
  • Email: kpech@nmsu.edu