Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program

DNP Alumni Spotlight

Andrew Fernandez, DNP, ANP-BC, OEHNP-S

Andrew Fernandez After twenty years of service with the U.S. Navy Hospital Corps and Medical Service Corps, Andrew retired and pursued a graduate degree in nursing. Andrew earned his Master's Degree in Nursing at the University of California, San Francisco as an Adult Nurse Practitioner with a specialization in Occupational Environmental Health in 2000.

"I have worked in the healthcare arena for a past twenty years and have seen the need for Nurse Practitioners to take the lead in introducing evidence based research in the healthcare setting. Understanding that the Doctorate in Nursing Practice (DNP) would provide me with the expertise to effectively implement changes in the clinical arena, I made the decision to pursue the doctorate degree. I chose to be part of the Inaugural DNP Class at the University of San Diego, based on the expertise of the faculty, the flexible schedule, and structured cohort class size. The diverse healthcare background of each student in the class provided a sound learning environment and a collegial approach to the program curriculum. It was a rewarding experience."

Andrew currently practices at Scripps Healthcare of San Diego where he has been involved with a five year pilot program aimed at integrating Occupational Medicine and primary care within the Employee Health Department. The significant findings of the Pilot Program promoted the concept of developing Employee Care Clinics throughout the Scripps Healthcare Campuses. The inaugural opening of the first Scripps Mercy San Diego Employee Care Clinic, which was well received by the hospital administration, medical staff, employees and medical groups, was on June 14, 2010. The second Employee Care Clinic opened on March 14, 2011. The mission of the Employee Care Clinics is to have Nurse Practitioners provide quality and efficient healthcare to the employees at Scripps Healthcare in collaboration with a Medical Director. "I am proud to say observing a concept being put into practice and effectively implementing change in the healthcare arena has justified my pursuit of the DNP degree."