Date of Graduation

Fall 12-16-2011

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)




Healthcare Systems Leadership DNP

First Advisor

KT Waxman, DNP, MBA, RN, CNL

Second Advisor

Judith Karshmer, Ph. D, APRN, BC

Third Advisor

Kia James, Ed. D, MPH, BSN, RN, CNL


New graduate registered nurses (RN) are facing a difficult time finding jobs since the economy of the United States has declined. Since then the California Institute of Nursing and Health Care, along with funding from the Betty Moore Foundation, have developed RN transition programs. These programs were developed to increase skills, confidence, and experience among new RN graduates to promote their transition into the nursing workforce. The programs also were designed to retain newly licensed nurses in the nursing profession while engaging competencies that could be transferred to both acute and outpatient care settings. In addition, the programs are intended to increase the employability of new nurses finding it difficult to secure a nursing position. This was a pilot program conducted in an ambulatory patient care setting as opposed to an acute care setting. This study used two cohorts of RN graduates to participate in a transition-to-practice program using qualitative analysis to measure the experiences and skills of new RN graduates during the program. Most residents in the program felt more confident after participation in the program and most were able to find employment as well. There were positive results from this study; however, more transition programs need to be developed and evaluated in different health care settings such as school and community health care settings.

(keywords: registered nurse, transition, residency, competency, skills, and confidence)