Date of Award


Document Type



College of Nursing

Degree Name

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)

Project Mentor

Kristen Swanson


Adam Gilbert


Purpose: The purpose of this five-step quality improvement project is to identify and address gaps between the current and desired state of an advanced practice clinician (APC) onboarding process. Specific aims: (1) determine organization-specific needs of APCs, (2) develop a mentorship program for newly hired APCs, and (3) conduct a program evaluation (process and outcomes).

Background: Although the APC workforce is rapidly growing, health care organizations struggle with high APC turnover. Effective mentorship has been shown to help APCs, who are either new to practice or new to an organization (Pop, 2017).

Design: A needs assessment survey was distributed to 380 APCs (Step 1). A one-to-one mentorship program pairing seasoned APCs to newly hired APCs was developed and implemented (Step 2). Three months after participation, a process evaluation survey was completed by the first cohort of mentee-mentor pairs (n = 20) (Step 3). Enrollment is ongoing. Mentee-mentor pairs will be sent an outcomes evaluation survey regarding their job satisfaction and intent to stay at the end of their participation (Step 4). Quantitative data were analyzed using descriptive statistics and crosstabs with Pearson’s chi-square test of significance. Qualitative data were analyzed using the conventional approach to content analysis (Hsieh & Shannon, 2005). SHS data on first-year APC turnover rates pre- (-3, -2, and -1 years) and post- (+1, +2, and +3 years) implementation will be gathered for comparison until the project conclusion (Step 5).

Results: 90 of 380 SHS APCs completed the needs assessment survey. There was a significant association between a desire to have been mentored upon hire and willingness to mentor sometime in the future or immediately (X2 (2, N = 90) = 6.131, p = .047 and X2 (2, N = 90) = 7.774, p = .021, respectively). Twenty mentees and mentors provided positive input on the utility of the program in the process evaluation survey.

Conclusions: The first cohort found participation in the mentorship program productive. Implications: This quality improvement project will provide evidence-based recommendations for the development and implementation of APC mentorship programs.

Included in

Nursing Commons