The Professional Advancement Model (PAM) is designed to recognize and reward nurses based on their professional contributions to advancing the practice and the profession of nursing. Nurses in the model progress from novice to expert through contributions at the unit level, within the medical center, and beyond. The PAM was created in 2008 in response to nurses’ feedback for more opportunities related to professional growth and development. Through UMMC’s shared governance councils, additional suggestions have been incorporated into the current model.

UMMC Nursing encourages professional development within all practice focus areas, which include Clinical Practice & Care Delivery, Professional Development, Unit Operations, and Service Quality & Safety. Nurses are encouraged to select an area of concentration in which they would like to further develop their individual interests and strengths. Advancement requires the nurse to meet defined criteria related to these four practice focus areas.

Model Objectives

  • Enhance professional growth and development
  • Provide recognition for professional contributions
  • Encourage involvement of bedside nurses in decisions that support/enhance patient care outcomes
  • Provide motivation for direct care nurses to pursue higher education, certification, and other professional achievements
  • Recruit and retain the highest caliber of nurses at UMMC

Model Components

The Professional Advancement Model contains four roles:

  • Clinical Nurse I (CNI);
  • Clinical Nurse II (CNII);
  • Senior Clinical Nurse I (SCNI); and
  • Senior Clinical Nurse II (SCNII).

See the Role Descriptions for these roles.

The SCNI role is aimed for the nurse who is a clinical and professional leader at the unit level. The SCNII role is designed for the nurse who has achieved expertise and leadership in the clinical and professional role within the unit and beyond. Each nursing unit can support an unlimited number of SCNs.

Professional Advancement Model Overview:

Hiring Criteria

  • A nurse with less than 12 months of experience will be hired as a CNI. 
  • A nurse with greater than 12 months of experience will be hired into the role for which he or she can show evidence of meeting that role's qualifications (minimum role for a nurse with greater than 12 months experience is CNII).

Promotion Criteria

  • Promotion from CNI to CNII occurs when the nurse has successfully met all requirements of the CNII role (including the completion of the Nurse Residency Program) and has greater than 12 months experience in the RN role.
  • A nurse may apply for advancement to SCNI or SCNII when meeting the requirements of the role. The applicant's manager must endorse the application. When applying for SCNII, the Director or Vice President must also endorse the application.

Unit Transfers

  • When a nurse transfers units, the hiring manager will assess performance and competency to determine the appropriate role for the nurse in the new area.