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Neonatal Nurse Practitioner

Our program focuses on the family as well as the infant through their first year of life, and prepares you for leadership in a variety of settings, like intensive care nurseries, well baby nurseries, home care, and high-risk follow-up programs.


If you have at least two years of neonatal nursing experience, our neonatal nurse practitioner program may be for you.  Our program focuses on the family as well as the infant through their first year of life.  Through our program, you will be prepared to become an expert in a variety of settings such as intensive care nurseries, well baby nurseries, home care, and high-risk follow-up programs.

Our Strengths

The University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing is routinely ranked in the top 5 graduate Schools of Nursing according to U.S. News & World Report.   We are geographically located near the University of Pennsylvania Health System (Penn Medicine) as well as the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).  We offer small cohorts with low faculty-to-student ratios, personalized attention, and the opportunity to learn from world renown experts in the field.   Our students have one of the highest pass rates on the national Nurse Practitioner certification exam.  Our extensive network of colleagues and alumni allow us to help place graduates before or soon-after graduation in the geographic area of their choice. 


Our world renowned Neonatal Nurse Practitioner program focuses on building future leaders in the field through clinical practice, hands-on education, extensive simulation, and robust research opportunities.  Our curriculum can be found on the plans of study and include research, the medically fragile child and family, embryology, physiology, pathophysiology, pharmacology, and management of the neonate.  In addition, the NNP faculty find both clinical sites and preceptors at a myriad level III and IV NICUs for our students. Our classes are held on campus at the University of Pennsylvania, allowing our students to take advantage of all Penn has to offer. 

Study options

We offer the program full-time, part-time, or as a post-Graduate APRN certificate.

Scope of Practice

The Neonatal Nurse Practitioner (NNP) is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) prepared at the master’s degree level as a nurse practitioner.  The NNP is prepared to practice across a continuum, providing primary, acute, chronic and critical care to infants and toddlers through age 2.  NNPs primarily work in neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) settings, NNPs select and perform clinically indicated advanced diagnostic and therapeutic invasive procedures. The National Association of Neonatal Nurse Practitioners (NANNP) is the national association that represents neonatal nurse practitioners in the United States. Certification is governed by the National Certification Corporation for Obstetrics, Gynecologic and Neonatal Nursing Specialties (NCC).


When you complete the program, you’ll be qualified to apply for national certification from the National Certification Corporation (NCC) as well as recognition, certification, and/or licensure by other states. Graduates are also eligible to become certified by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as Neonatal Certified Registered Nurse Practitioners.

Career opportunities

Our graduates typically work in: 

  • Neonatal Intensive Care Nurseries
  • Well Baby Nurseries
  • High Risk Follow Up
  • Teaching in undergraduate and graduate programs