About Alverno College and the JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions

Become a Nurse with an MSN
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Direct Entry Master’s in Nursing Program Designed for Non-Nurses

Established in 1887 by the School Sisters of St. Francis, Alverno College has been challenging students like you to stretch their capabilities for over a century. In addition to preparing you for your new career in nursing, we’ll empower you to speak with clarity, act with purpose and lead with integrity. After graduation, you’ll join an international community of Alverno College alums who make their mark on the world every day!

Alverno graduate nursing programs, including the Direct Entry master’s in nursing, are open to all genders. Our faculty are committed to nurturing the next generation of nurses. The delivery of a master’s level nursing program designed for students with non-nursing degrees, work and professional experience effectively diversifies the classroom and future nursing workforce. We believe inclusivity is key to growing a health care workforce that reflects the patients and communities nurses serve.

Our Locations

Alverno College’s DEMSN program is currently offered at our campus in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and at our location in Mesa, Arizona. A state-of-the-art Center for Clinical Education at both locations supports the development of clinical assessment and decision-making skills. Through high-fidelity nursing simulations, you’ll gain the hands-on experience needed to feel prepared for real world patient scenarios.

Developing a New Generation of Nursing Leadership

True to the mission of Alverno College, the JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions educates nurse professionals to make a real difference in the health of individuals, communities and the world through abilities-based learning that focuses on performance outcomes, not just the mastery of theoretical concepts.

Our DEMSN program will equip you for advanced nursing practice and innovative leadership.

My MSN Quick Facts

We often hear from prospective students who come from non-nursing backgrounds that they are confused by some nursing jargon. Here are answers to the most asked questions:

Q. What is the difference between Direct Entry and a Direct Admit program?

A. “Direct Admit” generally refers to an undergraduate nursing program that does not require students to complete the required general education credits prior to applying for admission to the Nursing Major. Direct Admit programs typically have GPA and Nursing Admission Test score requirements to gain entry. In a Direct Admit program, students are guaranteed a seat in core nursing classes but they may have to wait for clinical placements

“Direct Entry” MSN refers to master’s in nursing level program that does not require completion of a BSN degree prior to entry. Direct Entry MSN programs are open to applicants who hold a bachelor’s degree in any  discipline other than nursing..

Q. What is the difference between an MSNDE and a DEMSN?

A. Well, nothing. It’s simply a naming convention chosen by a college offering a direct entry nursing program at the master’s level.

Choose Alverno’s direct entry master’s in nursing because we offer:

A Top-Ranked Institution — Recognized in multiple categories by U.S. News and World Report, Alverno is ranked as a top Regional University in the Midwest and top Innovative School in the Midwest, a Best Value School, a top College for Veterans. Alverno College has long been recognized for excellence in nursing education. Our NCLEX pass rate consistently exceeds the U.S national pass rate.

Advanced Approaches to Learning and Teaching — Our abilities-based curriculum emphasizes applied learning. You’ll practice this in our Center for Clinical Education (CCE). Our CCE’s patient simulation equipment and simulated treatment settings enable you to develop the knowledge, skills and confidence you need to practice hands-on care in the real world.

A learning Community Focused on You — Your program is about your aspirations and attainment of professional goals. Our classes are small, so you can connect with your classmates and faculty in a meaningful way. At Alverno, life-long personal and professional relationships are forged.

A Vision Beyond Graduation — We challenge you to emerge from your program with a vision for your nursing career that goes beyond finding a job to defining your professional mission. How will you seek to improve the health and health care of the patients and communities you serve as a professional nurse? How will you reduce health care disparities and improve accessibility? How will you make a difference?

Quality, Accredited Curriculum — Our Direct Entry MSN program, is accredited by the Collegiate Commission on Nursing Education (http://www.ccneaccreditation.org). It focuses on holistic, evidence-based practice across patient populations and the lifespan.

Field-Experienced Faculty — Alverno’s MSN faculty members are clinical experts in numerous areas of specialty nursing, including but not limited to: acute, emergency and critical care; pediatrics; gerontology; heart care; oncology; public health and community nursing; and leadership, policy and advocacy. We will eagerly share our knowledge and experience to ensure your successful transformation to professional nurse and readiness for continued graduate nursing education in advanced practice nursing and doctor of nursing practice degree programs.

As a DEMSN student of the JoAnn McGrath School of Nursing and Health Professions at Alverno College, you can do more than become the nurse you’ve always wanted to be—you can change the trajectory of your life, family, community, health care systems and the world! Contact an admissions advisor today to start your journey with the Direct Entry MSN from our location in Milwaukee, WI or Mesa, AZ.