The American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) has recommended that by 2020, a doctorate degree, and not a master’s degree, become the professional standard of education for all nurses performing in advanced practice roles. In addition, the AACN calls for the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) to replace the Doctor of Nursing (DN) as the doctorate degree exclusively associated with practice-centered doctoral nursing education nationwide.
In clear support of these AACN recommendations, institutes of higher learning like Rhode Island College now offer a DNP degree program. By offering a DNP degree option, Rhode Island is helping nurses become experts in their field and thereby heightening their future salary earnings.
In 2014, the United States Department of Labor had already established Rhode Island as a strong state in terms of high employment and salary trends for DNP-educated nurses in 2014. For example:
- Rhode Island was among the top five highest paying state for postsecondary nursing instructors and teachers in the country. The state paid postsecondary nursing instructors and teachers an average annual salary of over $90,000 in that year.
- Rhode Island was also among the top five states with the greatest concentration of medical and health services manager jobs in the country. The state’s 1,470 medical and health services managers earned an average annual salary of more than $120,000 at that time.
- Nurse practitioners were among Rhode Island’s top forty highest paying occupations. Employers gave nurse practitioners working statewide an average annual salary of over $115,000.
High Paying Jobs for Nurses with DNP Degrees in Rhode Island
In 2015, the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training published the following salary data. Shown here are the 75th percentile average salaries for each role to account for the fact that DNP-prepared nurses routinely earn salaries that fall within the top 25% of their profession:
- Providence-Fall River-Warwick – $187,199*
Nurse Administrators and Executives:
- Providence-Fall River-Warwick – $124,530
- Norwich-New London – $123,157
- Providence-Fall River-Warwick – $123,720
- Norwich-New London – $118,290
*Value is equal to or greater than $187,199 a year. The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training does not publish salary data higher than these values.
Where DNP-Educated Nurses Find Jobs in Rhode Island
According to the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training, the following employers posted the largest number of online job advertisements in search of DNP-educated nurses statewide in February 2016:
- Rhode Island Hospital
- Care New England Health System
- Acadia Healthcare Company, Inc.
- The Miriam Hospital
- New England Institute of Technology
- Genesis Healthcare
- MedOptions, Inc.
- Department of Veterans Affairs
- UnitedHealth Group, Inc.
- Bradley Hospital
A Closer Look at Salaries for Nurses with DNP Degrees in Rhode Island
The following 2014 data table presents a detailed look at the 75th and 90th salary percentiles for several nursing occupations that typically prefer DNP-educated workers. All salary statistics are provided courtesy of the United States Department of Labor: