Interview with DNP student: Jennifer Lange

dnp student interview graphic with headshot of jennifer lange

Jennifer Lange (MSN, RN, APNP, FNP-BC, CNEcl, PM-DNP student) has worked in nursing for over 15 years and has spent the last 7.5 years as a Family Nurse Practitioner. Her clinical experience is in medical-surgical nursing, primary care, urgent care, and occupational medicine. She maintains her clinical practice at an SSM Employee Wellness Clinic, focusing on preventive medicine, family practice, and employee wellbeing. Jennifer is a Certified Academic Clinical Nurse Educator with 6 years of experience at a private university teaching throughout different nursing tracks.  Currently, she is a Clinical Instructor at UW-Madison School of Nursing, teaching in both undergraduate and graduate programs.  Her clinical and research interests include population health, preventive medicine, and role transition for nurses. Jennifer’s DNP Project is in the proposal phase with anticipated graduation of May 2024.

We chatted with her about UWM’s DNP program:

Tell us your name and your current job.

My name is Jen Lange and I am a Family Nurse Practitioner at SSM Health in Madison, WI.

Why did you decide to pursue a DNP? How will it benefit your work?

My route to the DNP is different than many of the other UWM students as I did the Post-Master’s-DNP program. I received my Master’s in 2016 from UIC and have worked as an NP for the last 7 years. In 2021, when Covid was still ongoing and I was home more with my kids, I decided it was the perfect time to start my DNP.  I knew completing the DNP would help facilitate future leadership and teaching opportunities.

Why did you choose UW-Milwaukee to complete your DNP?

I chose UW-Milwaukee due to the community reputation and the online flexibility. UW-Milwaukee definitely surpassed my expectations in the online classroom, as I was still able to establish and build relationships with many other students and faculty.

Tell us about your journey to get to where you are now in your career.

I started as a CNA in 2007, then BSN in 2011, MSN in 2016, and I am so happy to say I will have my terminal degree, the DNP, this year. My entire career has been committed to the nursing profession and patient care. Pursuing the terminal degree was important to me as I began to consider more advanced leadership and teaching opportunities in the nursing field.

What advice would you give to individuals who are considering a doctoral degree?

If you’re considering a post-master’s-DNP, my advice is to go to UW-Milwaukee, you won’t be disappointed.

For those considering a BSN-DNP, if you want to become an NP, take time to consider your correct track (AG vs Family vs Peds).

Why should someone consider pursuing a doctoral degree?

As someone who is a Master’s-prepared, practicing NP, I have truly been able to take my interests, population health and improving nursing practice, and create my project. In the program I learned about advanced leadership and program planning skills in nursing, and the project I completed will help me improve my daily practice and achieve long-term career goals.

What have you liked about UWM’s DNP program? What makes it stand out?

The online format with knowledgeable, committed faculty has stood out to me as unique.

Do you have a favorite experience in the program?

Conceptualizing my project and seeing it to completion.

Is there anyone in the School of Nursing who has impacted your journey?

Dr. Thongpriwan has been an excellent faculty advisor. Dr. Klingbeil, the DNP program director, has been an amazing resource. Jennifer Carrera has also been incredibly helpful whenever I needed assistance.

Anything else you would like to share?

I would recommend the program without hesitation to future students!

Interested in learning more? Check out our doctoral nursing programs and get in touch with us!