Nurse Practitioner Residencies: A Look at Your Options

One of the biggest hurdles you will encounter as a nurse practitioner is your first few months of practice.  Moving from clinical hours in your NP program to real-life practice can be quite a shock.  The learning curve is steep, and it takes a few months before you begin to feel comfortable working as an NP.  A growing trend, completing a nurse practitioner residency, aims to smooth the transition from education to practice.

Nurse practitioner residency was first introduced in 2005.  Since then, a few residency opportunities have cropped up across the country.  If you are an NP student graduating soon, check out these residency opportunities to facilitate your transition to practice.


Nashville, TN

Similar to a residency, participants in ThriveAP+ not only benefit from the ThriveAP 12-month education program integrated with the workday, they also benefit from the program’s relationships with new grad-friendly clinics nationwide. ThriveAP facilitates the matching process with employers from across the country. 

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Family Health Center of Worcester 

Worcester, MA

In this post-graduate NP residency, participants receive one year of additional skills training as well as an independent mentorship experience in one of FHCW’s community health centers. This intensive clinical program only selects two FNP applicants per year.

The University of Rochester- Highland Family Medicine

Rochester, NY

The 13-month, full time residency program at HFM exposes residents to innovative models of primary care rooted in evidence-based principles of integrated medical and behavioral healthcare. The program places emphasis on team-based care, interprofessional education, and practice efficiency. 

San Francisco VA Health Care System

San Francisco, CA

In the San Francisco VA Nurse Practitioner Residency program, FNPs complete the program at one of seven nationwide VA Centers of Excellence in Primary Care Education. The program has required specialty placements which may include options in cardiology, dermatology, pulmonology, palliative care, gastroenterology, infectious disease and many others. 

Providence Community Health Centers

Providence, RI

Available to FNPs who are within 24 months of post-graduation, this intensive program includes full time employment with a robust benefits package. Residents also participate in weekly group didactic sessions and may have the opportunity for continued employment after completion of the twelve month program. 

Thundermist Health Center

Woonsocket, RI

The residency at Thundermist Health Center includes five key components such as precepted continuity clinics, specialty rotations, didactic education sessions, quality improvement training and ongoing multi-input evaluations. Thundermist requires a one-year commitment to employment after program completion. 

PHMC Health Network

Philadelphia, PA

The residency at PHMC accepts of two primary care providers and two psychiatric nurse practitioner residents for a full-time employment opportunity, followed by a one year post-residency commitment at one of PHMC’s health centers.

Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic

Yakima, WA

The program at Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic is specifically intended for FNPs who are committed to providing care at FQHCs and accepts only five providers per year. Applicants must be recent graduates within the past 18 months. 

El Rio Health

Tucson, AZ

El Rio Health collaborates with Mariposa Community Health Center in Nogales, Arizona and Marana Health Center in Marana, Arizona in order to meet the healthcare needs of the state’s rural population. Candidates must be passionate about community health and have a desire to continue employment with the facilities after completion of their residency. The residency offers a benefits package and loan deferment may be available. 

Sanford Health

Fargo, ND

The Sanford Health APP Primary Care Fellowship accepts two advanced practice providers (including both PAs and NPs) who are committed to clinical practice in ambulatory primary care. The curriculum includes lectures, journal clubs, simulations, case reviews, specialty rotations and mentored clinical experiences in both internal medicine and family medicine settings. 

Community Health Center

Tacoma, WA

Over the course of the twelve month residency program, FNPs will complete month-long rotations in high-risk, high-volume, and high-burden areas most commonly encountered in FQHC settings. The core curricular elements of the program include weekly didactic sessions, bi-weekly quality improvement seminars and twice monthly video conferences with PCPs with a multidisciplinary team of pain specialists to improve the management of patients with chronic pain. Participants must also commit to one year of employment with CHC after completion of the program. 

Santa Rosa Community Health

Santa Rosa, CA

The Santa Rosa Community Health NP Residency Program is offered in affiliation with Sonoma State University. In order to be eligible, applicants must have completed their FNP program within the last 24 months and must receive their NP certification by the California Board of Registered Nursing within two months of enrollment. Basic Spanish comprehension is also a requirement. 

Atrium Health 

Charlotte, NC

This one-year, post-graduate fellowship program is available to new NP and PA graduates, as well as experienced APPs wishing to change disciplines or career paths. Atrium Health offers start dates in April and October as well as multiple fellowship program tracks including acute care, primary care/urgent care and specialty care. 

Holyoke Health

The FNP residency training program at Holyoke Health provides intensive training in both the clinical complexity of family practice and training to a high performance, patient-centered medical home model for primary care. The residency accepts three FNPs annually and requires a one year employment commitment after program completion.

International Community Health Services

Seattle, WA

The ICHS FNP residency provides a five-part curriculum which includes a ramp up schedule, continual education with weekly didactics and exposure to several clinical specialties. The 13 month program has seven residency positions available and is salaried with benefits.

HRHCare Community Health

Peekskill, NY

The residency with HRHCare Community Health incorporates significant rural/migrant health experience and requires a one year employment commitment after successful completion. The program structure includes precepted primary care sessions, specialty rotations, mentored independent sessions in the FQHC setting, didactic sessions and quality improvement training.

CHAS Health

Lewis-Clarke Valley, WA

The residency program at CHAS Health includes a small working group and one-on-one time with preceptors caring for patients, as well as many continued learning didactic opportunities including suturing, eye exams, joint injections, anticoagulation therapy and many more. 

Sea Mar Community Health Center

Seattle, WA

Sea Mar is committed to high-quality and rigorous post graduate training for its FNP residents. The highly esteemed program emphasizes interdisciplinary medicine and patient-centered, culturally competent care, and also offers residents exposure to medically and socially complex patients. 

Harbor Health 

Boston, MA

Harbor Health’s program is specifically intended for new FNP graduates who are committed to developing careers as PCPs in the challenging setting of community health centers and other safety net settings. A one year employment commitment is required after completion. 

North Mississippi Health Services 

Tupelo, MS

The residency program at North Mississippi Health Services includes specialty and primary care rotations and generally includes rotations in cardiology, diabetes treatment, pulmonology, infectious disease, behavioral health, chronic pain management, neurology, rheumatology, and many more. In addition, elective clinical experiences are available. Applicants must have completed their FNP programs within the last 18 months in order to be eligible.

Are you interested in a nurse practitioner residency or fellowship? Check out our post, The Ultimate Guide to Nurse Practitioner Residencies


12 thoughts on “Nurse Practitioner Residencies: A Look at Your Options”

  1. We need more NP residency programs but not just for new grads but it also needs to be offered to NP’s who are already in practice in the acute care setting. I firmly believe that the majority of NP’s who are practicing in acute care settings have not received appropriate training. Those of us who have many years In critical care as bedside nurses are often left behind because is the assumption that we have experience.y experience is that there is no one to train us. Itvis a constant battle with doctors to help educate us and our nursing administration just assumes that a warm body is a warm body. It is that ridiculous mentality that is part of the nursing tapestry. I am tired of all the opportunities being given to new people coming on board and those of us who are already in the trenches are forgotten about. We are usually given the responsibility of training others when we ourselves have never had appropriate training. Additionally we should not be part of any nursing department because we are treated as bedside nurses. My NP orientation consisted of being oriented with brand new graduate nurses. The orientation consisted how to draw blood, where to out EKG leads on a pt and so on and so forth. Despite my having near 20 years of working as an ICU nurse this is what my orientation was. My advice is that those who are in the drivers seat of our profession is to WAKE UP! Let’s really start getting on board with training us in the medical model. Please let’s fight to get more NP fellowships started for experienced as well as new NP’s!
    Thank You

  2. Thank you Maddi, you hit the nail on the head; this NP program, I personally feel should be scrapped if not scrutinized for the poor quality training it provides to interested RNs. New NPs are not fully trained compare to other medical disciplines and there is no support when you start a new NP job. Clinical rotations are insufficient and less hands on. This is pathetic.

    1. Amen! This is what gives the profession a bad name … if you had a unsuccessful NP preceptorship you come out not feeling very competent therefore, assuming all NPs are that way.. and with these residencies it will finally bring to an end of these poor NP students finding their own preceptors which has been so disappointing to say the least! I remember one preceptor I had in Internal medicine I learned nothing ! He never let me in on any exams I took all histories and then charted I felt like a reporter than a NP student. Never let me do a prostate exam so when I got out of school I was terrified. Let’s get these programs started!
      Dr. Rachel Leier DNP, APRN, CNP
      Family Nurse Practitioner
      Urgent Care Medicine

  3. How could someone go about establishing a new new-grad residency for NPs? I would be up to the challenge of creating one! Any thoughts?

  4. The NP residency programs out there are not enough to cater for the number of new graduate. I applied to a couple to them after completing my NP program and passing my boards but I did not get any of them although I was willing to relocate. I am an FNP and I wanted to work in the primary care setting but I ended up working in neurology because no practice was willing to hire me as a new graduate. It’s a shame that NP’s are not given the support they need after school in terms of adequate training compared to what the medical residents receive.

  5. Pamela Knickerbocker, D.O.

    I noticed that the Shasta Community Health Center NP/PA Primary Care Fellowship Program in Redding, CA is not on the list. We are a 2 year program with weekly didactics the first year and weekly journal club (with some additional lectures as well) the second. There is a gradual ramp up in number of patients seen during clinic times, outside rotations in specialties, specialty guest lecturers, group field trips to relevant facilities such as sleep lab, orthotics company, etc, and a very supportive atmosphere. The second year is a “pathway to practice” and mimics the common clinician’s 4 day work week. We accept up to 4 individuals every year for a total of 8 Fellows in the 2 combined class years. If you have an interest in primary care, know that we are up here in northern California!

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