Strategies for success in a nursing PhD program and beyond

Marlena C. Fisher, Tamryn F. Gray, Melissa K. Uveges, Katherine E. Heinze, Tiffany P. Pellathy, Elaina Parrillo, Marilyn Hravnak, Marie T. Nolan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: The purpose of this article is to inform newly enrolled PhD students of program expectations, strategies for success, and next steps in the career of a nurse scientist. Methods: We used empirical evidence and insights from the authors to describe strategies for success during a nursing PhD program and continued career development following graduation. Findings: Measures of success included maintaining health, focus, integrity, and a supportive network, identifying mentors, pursuing new knowledge and advancing research to transform health outcomes. Conclusion: Nursing PhD programs help to shape future researchers and leaders. Choosing to obtain a PhD in nursing is an investment in oneself, the discipline, and the science. Clinical relevance: Nursing PhD programs offer opportunities to advance science, impact healthcare and health outcomes, and prepare for a variety of career opportunities. Informing newly enrolled PhD students may better prepare them for what lies ahead and facilitate student retention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-193
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Professional Nursing
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022


  • Career development
  • Mentoring
  • Nursing PhD programs
  • Nursing education
  • Nursing science
  • Post-graduate education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Nursing


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