Guide to Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies (2022)

The rise of nurse practitioner fellowships and residencies is both a signal and a cause of the profession’s continued growth.

While not a requirement to practice, fellowships and residencies provide a nurse practitioner the opportunity to bridge educational knowledge with hands-on experience. Often, the first few months out of school and in the workforce are the most difficult for a nurse practitioner, who in some settings may be expected to perform as many as 80 percent of the same duties a physician would. Fellowships and residencies smooth the transition, offering extra hands-on experience and allowing for further specialization. 

Fellowships and residencies primarily consist of semi-supervised clinical hours with a specific educational focus. A long-serving part of the physician education pipeline, the residency and fellowship system is relatively new to the nurse practitioner profession. For physicians, medical school is followed by a residency, which is then followed by a fellowship. But for nurse practitioners, the choice is optional, and usually results in attending either a residency or a fellowship, not both. 

A residency is generally a post-graduate program in a major field, such as primary care, while a fellowship is a post-graduate program in a sub-specialty, such as gastroenterology. Housed within a healthcare setting, and most commonly within a Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), residencies are often broken into two parts: a didactic curriculum and hands-on practice. Rotations in a specialty area may be included as well. 

Choosing which fellowship or residency to attend is a personal decision, as is choosing whether to attend at all. Fellowships and residencies are almost always paid positions and come with typical employee benefits, but sometimes these are not at the same level as what an independent nurse practitioner would receive. Candidates will have to weigh the benefits of added clinical knowledge and a supportive practice environment against a slightly reduced salary and a less flexible setting.

But those nurse practitioners who complete fellowships and residencies will see their skill sets, as well as their career options, objectively improve.

Applying for Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies

Nurse practitioner fellowship and residency programs generally look for candidates who have completed their education less than 12-18 months before enrollment. The application cycle typically mirrors the academic calendar, with applications opening in January for a September start date.

Each fellowship or residency will have different application and admission requirements, but some commonalities do exist. Candidates will generally need to provide: a resume; an application form; letter(s) of recommendation; a personal statement and/or essay(s); and certification and/or licensure eligibility.

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Primary Care

University of Rochester – Highland Family Medicine

University of Rochester’s Nurse Practitioner Residency Program provides Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) graduates with the training they need to provide high-quality, cost-effective, family-centered patient care to a diverse and complex population. The university offers an urban practice NP residency program and a rural practice NP residency program.

In addition to working at preceptor continuity clinics, residents will perform specialty rotations that may include: pediatrics; geriatrics; urology; women’s health; oncology; pain management; and immunology.

  • Location: Rochester, NY
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: Urban Practice NP Residency Program (March 1, 2022); Rural Practice NP Residency Program (May 20, 2022)
  • Compensation: Salary and benefits

Family Health Center of Worcester

The Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) residency program at the Family Health Center of Worcester is an intense clinical program that prepares FNPs to meet the needs of a culturally diverse and clinical complex patient population.

Within a family practice model, residents will be exposed to a wide range of health services, including sports medicine, newborn and postpartum care, prenatal clinic, office procedure clinic, school-based health, colposcopy, and HIV and hepatitis care. Workshop topics include diabetes 101, women’s health issues in primary care, malpractice in primary care, integrative behavioral health in primary care, and the elderly patient.

  • Location: Worcester, MA
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: February 7, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Community Health Care

Community Health Care’s Family Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioner (ARNP) Residency first launched in the fall of 2012. Each year, the program’s two residents will rotate between six clinic locations, and work with an interdisciplinary faculty that focuses on family medicine, OBGYN, and pediatrics in an FQHC setting. Internal and external specialty rotations include topics such as psychiatry, cardiology, dermatology, orthopedics, spine clinic, and more. There are also mini-rotations for a dental clinic, wound care, and ophthalmology.

  • Location: Tacoma, WA
  • Duration: 13 months
  • Application Deadline: February 15, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Community Health Center

The Family Nurse Practitioner Residency Program at Community Health Center (CHC) is designed to integrate nurse practitioners into the CHC model of care. The cornerstone of the program is in precepted continuity clinics, where residents will develop their own patient panel, under the guidance of a preceptor.

Month-long specialty rotations include adult behavioral health; child and adolescent behavioral health; dermatology; geriatrics; and pediatrics. Upon completion of the program, residents are expected to commit to an additional year of employment with CHC.

  • Location: Middletown, CT
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 15, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Atrium Health Center for Advanced Practice

Atrium Health’s Center for Advanced Practice (CAP) hosts the Advanced Practice Provider Fellowship for both freshly graduated NPs who want additional experience and seasoned NPs who want to transition into a new specialty. Each fellow will perform specialty and elective rotations, and receive procedural-based training from an established network of providers.

The post-graduate primary care/urgent care fellowship program has three tracks available, which include family medicine, rural family medicine, and urgent care.

  • Location: Charlotte, NC
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 15, 2022
  • Compensation: Stipend plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Acute Care

Atrium Health Center for Advanced Practice

Atrium Health’s Center for Advanced Practice has an acute care fellowship program that allows NPs to develop the knowledge and experience needed to perform life-saving procedures in high-acuity patient populations.

The curriculum is focused on the most common areas of difficulty for NPs making the transition from education to practice, while also allowing fellows to develop specialty-specific skills. Acute care tracks include medical critical care; surgical critical care; adult hospitalist; cardiology; emergency medicine; palliative care; cardiothoracic surgery; surgery specialties; pediatric hospitalist; and neonatal ICU.

  • Location: Charlotte, NC
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 15, 2022
  • Compensation: Stipend plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Emergency Care

Emory Critical Care Center

Emory Healthcare’s Critical Care APP Fellowship is accredited as a practice transition program by the American Nurses Credentialing Centers Commission on Accreditation in practice transition programs. This program is designed to prepare acute care nurse practitioners (ACNPs) and certified physician assistants to practice the specialty of critical care medicine as members of an interdisciplinary team. The program combines a highly detailed competency-based curriculum with hands-on clinical learning. 

Resident rotations include surgical ICU; medical ICU; neurosurgical ICU; cardiac care unit; infectious diseases; and trauma/surgical ICU. The program requires a 60-hour per week commitment.

  • Location: Atlanta, GA
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2022
  • Compensation: Stipend and benefits

University of Maryland Medical Center

The Nurse Practitioner Critical Care Fellowship at the University of Maryland Medical Center is a fast-paced program that upskills nurse practitioners who wish to work in critical care. The program utilizes simulation, didactic learning, and precepted clinical rotations to develop advanced decision-making in the management of critically ill patients.

Clinical rotations include neuro-critical care unit; medical ICU; trauma ICU; surgical ICU; lung rescue unit; critical care resuscitation unit; cardiology service; soft tissue surgical service; acute emergency surgery service; neurotrauma intensive care unit; and stroke neurology service.

To be eligible, applicants must have graduated from an accredited acute care nurse practitioner program, be nationally board-certified, obtain a Maryland RN and CRNP license, and be able to work weekends, nights, 40-60 hour workweeks, attend all lectures, simulation, and clinical rotations.

  • Location: Baltimore, MD
  • Duration: Nine months
  • Application Deadline: March 31, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

The Carilion Clinic – Virginia Tech

The emergency medicine fellowship at the Carilion Clinic – Virginia Tech offers nurse practitioners the specialized clinical experience they need for a successful career in emergency medicine.

Fellows each year engage in a dynamic curriculum that covers a wide range of clinical rotations, including ophthalmology; EMS and air transport; anesthesia; cardiology; critical care medicine and the ICU; orthopedics; ultrasound; and rural emergency medicine. 

  • Location: Roanoke, VA
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: September 15, 2022
  • Compensation: $53,000 plus benefits

University of Pittsburgh Department of Critical Care Medicine

The UPMC Critical Care Advanced Practice Provider (APP) Residency is a twelve-month, postgraduate training program for certified registered nurse practitioners and physician assistants who are interested in advanced training in adult critical care medicine. Applicants of this residency will train alongside their physician counterparts gaining technical skills and in-depth knowledge necessary to care for a full range of critically ill patients.

Focus areas include surgical critical care, medical critical care, trauma, transplantation, and cardiothoracic diseases. This residency will be structured around thirteen, 4-week rotations on topics such as surgical ICU; surgical-trauma ICU; neurotrauma ICU; neurovascular ICU; cardiothoracic ICU; and transplant ICU among others.

  • Location: Pittsburgh, PA
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: January 31, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Adult-Gerontology

Community Health Center

The Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner Residency Program at Community Health Center (CHC) is designed to integrate nurse practitioners into the CHC model of care. 

In addition to working at precepted continuity clinics, residents will undergo specialty rotations that cover adult behavioral health; dermatology; geriatrics; health and healthcare for the homeless; HIV care; orthopedics; and women’s health. Upon completion of the program, residents are expected to commit to an additional year of employment with CHC.

  • Location: Middletown, CT
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: April 1, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Cardiology

Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences

The Cardiology Nurse Practitioner Fellowship offered by the Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences in Arizona is designed for nurse practitioners with a strong interest in the cardiovascular field. The program consists of 300 didactic hours and 1,700 clinical mentored hours.

Fellows will experience all aspects of adult cardiovascular disease management, including advanced heart disease failure; cardiac transplantation; adult congenital heart disease; and cardiothoracic surgery.

  • Location: Phoenix/Scottsdale, AZ
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: February 14, 2022
  • Compensation: Stipend plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Gastroenterology & Hepatology

Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

The Nurse Practitioner Fellowship Program at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine’s Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology is integrated with the division’s program for physicians, and both programs provide comparable training experiences.

Graduates of the program will have the skills and knowledge to provide high-quality care in the specialty of gastroenterology and hepatology in any setting. In addition to core rotations, fellows will receive exposure to specialty areas such as pancreatic diseases; gastrointestinal oncology; transplant hepatology; motility and neurogastroenterology; inflammatory bowel disease; and nutrition.

  • Location: Baltimore, MD
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 1, 2022
  • Compensation: $50,000 plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Neuroscience

Duke University, Department of Neurology

Duke University offers a one-year advanced practice providers program for physician assistants and nurse practitioners. Upon completion of the program, professionals should be comfortable with general neurological principals in inpatient and outpatient settings, and prepared to work in general practice or subspecialty neurology.

  • Location: Durham, NC
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: Rolling
  • Compensation: “Competitive” following one year of residency

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Oncology

University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

The Post-Graduate Fellowship in Oncology Nursing at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center is designed to provide nurse practitioners with clinical experiences that cover the entire spectrum of oncology care, from prevention to end-of-life.

In addition to the core curriculum, fellows will sample a specialty curriculum that explores areas such as cardiology; pulmonary medicine; psychiatry; palliative care; cancer prevention; head & neck surgery; interventional radiology; infectious disease; and stem cell transplants.

  • Location: Houston, TX
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: January 5, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Palliative Care

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

The Advanced Practice Provider (APP) Fellowship in Hospice and Palliative Care at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center equips nurse practitioners with the expertise needed to become leaders in palliative care. Fellows train side-by-side with physicians and physician assistants, and their respective programs. 

Situated at a world-renowned cancer center, the learning and clinical environment emphasizes palliative care as an integral part of the patient-centered experience. An oncology background is preferred, but not required, for this program.

  • Location: New York, NY
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: January 31, 2022
  • Compensation: Pending

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Pediatrics

Community Health Center

The Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Program at Community Health Center fully integrates its residents with the CHC model of care. In addition to weekly didactic sessions and precepted continuity clinics, residents will experience specialty rotations that cover topics such as dermatology; child and adolescent behavioral health; newborn nursery; genetics; and school-based health. Upon completion of the program, residents are expected to commit to an additional year of employment with CHC.

  • Location: Middletown, CT
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: April 1, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Psychiatric Mental Health

Regions Hospital Psychiatry Advanced Practice Clinician Fellowship

The psychiatry APC fellowship at Regions Hospital is designed for NPs who are looking to become experts in psychiatry and its related subdisciplines. The clinical rotation schedule includes topics such as adult inpatient psychiatry; adult outpatient psychiatry; toxicology; addiction psychiatry; neurology consults; and partial hospitalization. Fellows will work a minimum of 40 to 45 hours per week and prepare for any other academic requirements outside of that time span.

Certification in psychiatric or mental health or a physician assistant degree is required to be eligible.

  • Location: St. Paul, MN
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: Recruitment begins in February and March 2022
  • Compensation: PGY1 salary plus benefits and CME

Community Health Center

Community Health Center offers a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner (PMHNP) residency that fully integrates the resident into CHC’s high-performance health system. The program includes clinical rotations where residents develop their own panel of patients, working with the support of a preceptor. Upon completion of the program, residents are expected to commit to an additional year of employment with CHC.

Specialty rotation topics include medicated-assisted treatment; acupuncture; group therapy training; crisis intervention in ED; and intensive outpatient program (IOP).

  • Location: Middletown, CT
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 15, 2022
  • Compensation: Salary plus benefits

Nurse Practitioner Fellowships & Residencies in Specialty Care

Atrium Health Center for Advanced Practice

Atrium Health’s Center for Advanced Practice (CAP) also hosts a specialty care fellowship program that includes inpatient and outpatient settings. Fellows will learn a versatile set of skills, participating in high-acuity patient experiences that are combined with office-based services. Specialty tracks for NPs include urology; psychiatry/behavioral health; women’s health; hematology/oncology; and geriatric medicine.

  • Location: Charlotte, NC
  • Duration: 12 months
  • Application Deadline: March 15, 2022
  • Compensation: Stipend plus benefits
Matt Zbrog

Matt Zbrog

Writer

Matt Zbrog is a writer and researcher from Southern California, and he believes a strong society demands a stronger healthcare system. Since early 2018, he’s written extensively about emerging topics in healthcare administration, healthcare research, and healthcare education. Drawing upon interviews with hospital CEOs, nurse practitioners, nursing professors, and advocacy groups, his writing and research are focused on learning from those who know the subject best.