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Direct Entry Pathway for GEM Program Applicants

The Direct Entry pathway allows you to apply to a doctoral program when you apply to the Direct Entry Master’s in Nursing (MSN) for Non-Nurses (GEM) program. This allows you to seamlessly transition to one of five select doctoral program after completing the GEM requirements.

The following doctoral programs are included in the Direct Entry pathway: 

Applications to the Direct Entry pathway program are completed through NursingCAS at the same time as your GEM application. You must commit to one program. 

If you are accepted, you will be assigned a faculty adviser from your selected doctoral program. Your faculty adviser will help you plan the next stages of you career while you are still in the GEM program. 

You must maintain good standing throughout the GEM program to retain early acceptance in the doctoral program. In addition, you must complete the following:   

  • GEM capstone project related to the student’s research interest (agreed upon by student, PhD faculty mentor and the GEM team).  
  • Student must consistently demonstrate academic progression and meet requirements of GEM program. 
  • Volunteer/work experience with research projects prior to graduating from the prelicensure program and obtaining an RN license. 
  • Pass NCLEX-RN before enrolling in PhD program.   
  • GEM student must spend required GEM volunteer hours working on their PhD faculty mentor’s research. This experience can also be gained through a paid research assistant position. 


Other doctoral degree options

If you are not accepted to the Direct Entry pathway, you may apply to a doctoral program at RUSH after completing the GEM program. Up to 12 credit hours of your MSN coursework can be applied to a doctoral program.