Welcome to the University of Iowa Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner (AG-ACNP) program. My name is Dr. Julie Stanik-Hutt and I am proud to be the founding Director of the AG-ACNP Program. The AG-ACNP program is new to the University of Iowa and U.S. News & World Report has already ranked the program as one of the top 10 AG-ACNP programs in the country. We blend quality academics with exceptional clinical experiences that are carefully selected and individualized for the best student learning outcomes.

I’m passionate about providing the highest quality of care to adults and older adults who are physiologically unstable, technologically dependent, require frequent monitoring and intervention, and are highly vulnerable for complications. AG-ACNPs are self- directed and provide exceptional care to patients experiencing serious and sometimes life threating illnesses, stabilizing their condition, managing their symptoms, restoring function, and providing for safe care transitions. When needed, AG-ACNPs support patients, and their families, at the hour of death. We are often called “the glue” that holds together highly complex, patient-centered, inpatient care teams. Employment opportunities abound and the future for AG-ACNPs “is so bright, I gotta wear shades”.  

Each year the University of Iowa accepts up to 12 BSN prepared nurses into our AG-ACNP program. The initial years of the DNP program consist of online courses with exposure to students in the nurse anesthesia, health systems/administration, and all the other nurse practitioner (NP) tracks. During subsequent years, students in the AG-ACNP cohort will be in courses together, gaining competence in managing complex acutely, critically and chronically ill adults and older adults. Students complete at least 720 clinical hours working with patients who fit the AG-ACNP population. Throughout the program, DNP students work closely with a faculty advisor to develop leadership skills and complete a DNP project.

The College of Nursing also has a streamlined 1-year AG-ACNP Post Graduate Certificate program that results in eligibility for the AG-ACNP certification exam. This program is specifically designed for certified primary care NPs who are already in practice and wish to add to their clinical knowledge and expand their scope of practice to include caring for complex acutely, critically and chronically ill adults and older adults. In addition, the college offers post MSN to DNP options that enroll MSN graduates interested in completing their DNP while mastering the competencies required to care for patients who match the AG-ACNP population. The post MSN to DNP option is also open to master’s prepared AG-ACNPs who want to obtain a DNP degree.

Graduates of the UI College of Nursing AG-ACNP program are well prepared to for the challenges of caring adults and older adults with acute, critical and complex chronic conditions.  

I look forward to working with you and welcoming you as a colleague!

Julie Stanik-Hutt, PhD, ACNPC, CCNS, FAANP, FAAN
Director, Adult Gerontology, Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Program