Chief Nursing Officer Program

from University of California, Irvine

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Course Dates



Course Duration


9 Months
Online and In-Person

Course Fee


and get US$1,000 off with a referral application fee

Program Overview

The Chief Nursing Officer Program from the University of California, Irvine (UCI) Leadership Development Institute teaches chief nursing officers (CNOs) cutting-edge business approaches and transformational leadership that CNOs can apply to impact change within their own organizations. This unique nine-month, immersive learning journey is developed by the University of California, Irvine with insights from highly respected chief nursing executives to build the mindset and skills required for you to succeed as a CNO or chief nursing executive.

With content focusing on a range of highly relevant topics like creating an innovation culture and empowering your leadership team, this program offers hands-on coaching to create impactful leaders. As a leadership program for current and aspiring nursing executives, it is uniquely positioned to prepare the next generation of nursing leaders through executive leadership teachings and a strong approach to tackling the challenges within the evolving healthcare systems of today.

Who Is It For?

The Chief Nursing Officer Program is ideal for:

  • Current nursing executives who are looking to expand their business skills
  • Aspiring nurse executives who are preparing for C-suite challenges
  • Senior nursing leaders who want to upskill into their next role and extend their impact

Participants are expected to have:

  • A minimum of 10 years of experience in nursing and management roles combined
  • Fluency in written and spoken English

Why University of California, Irvine

Ranked among the nation’s top 10 public universities by the U.S. News & World Report, University of California, Irvine brings together educators, scholars and clinicians who are dedicated to the study of healthcare organizations, building the next generation of healthcare leaders and providing exceptional patient care. UCI is also home to the UCI Susan & Henry Samueli College of Health Sciences, which consists of the School of Medicine, the School of Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences, the School of Population Health and the Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing, chosen by as one of the top nursing programs for quality, value and satisfaction. The school has also been named one of California's best nursing schools by Nursing Schools Almanac.

Customized Design for Your Success

The Chief Nursing Officer Program is designed with the needs of nurse leaders in mind. You will learn through online and interactive sessions and guest lectures from global industry leaders. The flexible nature of the program allows you to customize your learning journey for maximum impact.


The self-paced modules provide the flexibility to accommodate learning around your busy work schedule with a weekly commitment of four to six hours.


A community learning experience facilitates interactive discussions with peers, faculty and industry speakers – allowing you to implement program learnings in real-world scenarios.


The multimodular learning journey experience enables you to learn and grow as a nursing executive, developing business strategies to improve your personal and organizational goals.

What You Will Learn in This Program

The program will help you:

  • Lead and inspire nursing colleagues across a shared vision that reflects the unique needs of patient care delivery and the healthcare environment
  • Create a healthy work environment with an agile and effective culture
  • Recruit, develop, retain and lead high-performing teams
  • Empower confidence for effective decision making by clinical staff
  • Develop financial business acumen and understand payer landscapes, business models, the competitive environment of healthcare and the influence of the chief nursing officer to the financial well-being of a healthcare system
  • Cultivate and leverage external relationships at the local and national level on healthcare policy, values-based care and trends in healthcare delivery
  • Provide strategic and executive leadership for the healthcare system that addresses current and anticipated organizational, population and patient needs
  • Create and innovate new healthcare delivery models combining medical, financial, and business expertise to promote equity, access and quality in healthcare services
Profile picture of professor Maritza Salazar
“Healthcare organizations are looking to nursing executives to provide strategic leadership in the C-suite that drives sustainable growth while meeting the highest standards for patient care. The Chief Nursing Officer Program has been designed by thought leaders at the intersection of business and healthcare to provide current and aspiring chief nursing executives with the practical skills and frameworks to solve the complex challenges they face today and innovate for the future.”
Maritza Salazar Campo, PhD
Faculty Director,
Assistant Professor of Organization and Management, The Paul Merage School of Business, University of California, Irvine

Key Program Features

Core Curriculum

Kick-start your program journey with 18 weeks of in-depth core sessions exploring nursing leadership.

Self-Paced Learning

Access recorded sessions that provide the flexibility to learn at your own pace and at your own convenience.

Expert Faculty

Learn from leading experts who are thought leaders and experienced practitioners with in-depth experience.

Professional Development Workbook

Curate program insights to develop a professional development workbook that will serve as a toolkit.

Flexible Learning Journey

Customize the learning journey with a choice of two electives to gain relevant skill sets specific to career goals.

Success Coach

Craft your learning journey through regular check-in sessions with a dedicated success coach.

Conference and Networking Event

Connect with high-achieving peers from around the globe and build a lifelong network of leaders.


The program’s curriculum is structured around three overarching areas of nursing leadership that are crucial for success at the executive level. You will learn the skills needed to define strategic priorities that address current and anticipated organizational, population and patient needs. Through engaging core modules, you will be immersed in the pressures that necessitate change, learn to build winning enterprise strategies and apply sustainable solutions to future-proof patient care.
  • Strategy and Change Management

    • Leading in Times of Transition
    • Creating an Innovation Culture
    • Impact of External Forces on ChangeThe Impact of External Forces on Healthcare
    • The Impact of Internal Forces on Healthcare
    • Leading Across the Organization: Managing Interdisciplinary Relationships
    • Leading Across the Organization: The 5S Framework

    Driving Organizational Effectiveness

    • Creating a Winning Strategy
    • Managing the Execution of Strategy
    • Healthcare Executives as Change Agents
    • Managing Shifting Priorities in Healthcare
    • Effective Change Management and Implementation

    Workforce Planning and Organizational Management

    • Budget Management and Healthcare System Financial Planning
    • Empowering Your Leadership Team
    • Engaging, Retaining and Developing Talent
    • Leading and Promoting Thriving Cultures

  • The electives offered for this program provide you with a unique opportunity to hone in on relevant and valuable areas of expertise you would like to develop. Each elective has been crafted with the healthcare challenges and opportunities specific to nurse leaders in mind, allowing you to walk away with the applicable skill set and specialized knowledge of your choice.

    • Agile Healthcare Management: This elective explores the operational imperatives facing today’s healthcare systems and providers
    • Personal Branding for Healthcare Leaders: This elective is intended to help emerging and current leaders consider their professional brand and the connection it has to their organizational influence and inclusivity as a leader 
    • Economics of Healthcare: Financing the Future: This elective is intended to provide the fundamentals of healthcare economics and the models, opportunities and pressure points for leaders to navigate the business issues that drive a successful practice     

    The program concludes with an optional in-person conference and networking event at the University of California, Irvine campus.

Professional Development Workbook

As a key part of the program, you will create your personalized professional development workbook, which will allow you to curate the industry-leading business skills you acquire from the program through prescribed activities and apply it as a toolkit in your role as a nursing leader as well as to address your organization’s challenges.

Meet the Faculty

The program is designed and taught by thought leaders from the University of California, Irvine who have a deep understanding of business and healthcare. The program's faculty includes esteemed PhDs, MDs and former healthcare executives. They bring to the curriculum cutting-edge scholarship and insights into the skill set and frameworks needed to be successful as a chief nursing officer.

Faculty Member Maritza Salazar Campo, PhD

Maritza Salazar Campo, PhD

Faculty Director, Chief Nursing Officer Program; Assistant Professor of Organization & Management, The Paul Merage School of Business, University of California, Irvine; Director of Team Science, Institute for Clinical and Translational Medicine, UCI School of Medicine

Faculty Member Ian O. Williamson, PhD

Ian O. Williamson, PhD

Dean of The Paul Merage School of Business, University of California, Irvine

Richard Afable, MD and MPH

President and Board Chair, MindOC/BeWellOC; President and Chief Executive Officer at St. Joseph Hoag Health (Retired); Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer at Catholic Health East (Retired)

John Joseph, PhD

Associate Professor of Strategy, The Paul Merage School of Business, University of California, Irvine

Faculty Member Alpesh N. Amin

Alpesh N. Amin

Professor, Medicine UCI School of Medicine; Chair, Department of Medicine; Executive Director, Hospitalist Program UCI School of Medicine

Profile picture of professor Romilla Batra

Romilla A. Batra, MD and MBA

Chief Medical Officer, SCAN Health Plan; Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine

Faculty Member Anthony Jones

Anthony Jones

Senior EVP of Operations (Retired), CommonSpirit Health

Faculty Member Sasha Strauss

Sasha Strauss

Founder, CEO Innovation Protocol

Meet the Advisors and Guest Speakers

Distinguished chief nursing officers, who are experienced practitioners, along with esteemed nursing faculty from the University of California, Irvine Sue & Bill Gross School of Nursing and throughout the University of California system, serve as the program's nursing experts. These accomplished leaders provide guidance on the curriculum and the effectiveness of the impact of the program while also imparting their valuable insights to participants as guest speakers.
Faculty Member Pat Patton

Pat Patton, DNP, MSN, RN

System Chief Nurse Executive, UCSF Health; Former Chief Nursing Officer and Vice President of Patient Care Services, University of California, Irvine Health

Faculty Member Karen Grimley, PhD, MBA, RN, FACHE, NEA-BC

Karen Grimley, PhD, MBA, RN, FACHE, NEA-BC

Chief Nursing Executive, UCLA Health; Former Chief Nursing Officer at UC Irvine, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center

Dr. Jerry Spicer

Chief Nursing Executive

Joseph Carmichael, CMO

Chief Medical Officer and Clinical Professor of Surgery and Chief of the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery at University of California, Irvine Health

Nate Shinagawa, MHA, FACHE

Chief Operating Officer at University of California, Irvine Health Former Chief Operating Officer at Banner Ocotillo Medical Center and Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center

Sue Padernacht, EdD, MA, PCC

CEO of Ncline Leadership Strategies and Senior Lecturer at University of California


Example image of certificate that will be awarded after successful completion of this program


Upon successful completion of the program, participants will be awarded a verified digital certificate by the Leadership Development Institute at the University of California, Irvine. The certificate will be a recognition of your achievement in the Chief Nursing Officer Program. Participants will also be granted status as UCI Paul Merage School of Business alumni.

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