Frequently Asked Questions for Sponsoring Graduate (MSN/DNP) Nursing Student Projects

How will sponsors learn about student project sponsoring opportunities?

  • A student may contact a sponsor directly or they may receive an inquiry from UW Health’s Program Coordinator for System Strategy to discuss their willingness to sponsor a student.
  • If interested, the sponsor will be contacted again to finalize necessary UW Health documentation.
  • The student will then contact the sponsor to arrange an initial meeting date, at which time you and the student can set up a schedule and determine a plan for moving forward.

What should a sponsor do if they have concerns about the program or the student they are sponsoring?

  • If a sponsor has any concerns about the program or a student’s performance, they should attempt to work through the challenge with the student and their faculty advisor. If they have questions about how to manage the situation, please contact

What should the sponsor expect from students?

  • Students should demonstrate professionalism.
  • Students are all licensed RNs and should observe professional norms related to patient confidentiality, respect and documentation.
  • Students should be timely, dressed professionally per UW Health policies (including wearing their student badge) and prepared for project activities in terms of having adequate resources and knowledge.
    • Badging
      • Students should have obtained a badge prior to their first day.
      • Student UW Health badges are expected to be visible and displayed at chest high level while students are on site.
      • Direct students to the Nursing Student Project at UW Health with a Sponsor for more information.
      • If the student experiences issues with their badge access to stock rooms, pharmacy med rooms on the unit, or doors in general, they may need to go to the Badge Office to have the access updated.
  • Although students are not expected to know everything on day one, they are expected to be accountable for their own learning needs as they are encountered.
  • Students should be leading the project with support and guidance from their sponsor.

What if a student incurs an injury while working with me?

  • Students that are UW Health employees, and on UW Health’s payroll, are eligible for coverage under UW Health’s Worker’s Compensation policy should they suffer an occupational injury/illness while in a UW Health site for the rotation experiences.
  • Students that are not UW Health employees are not eligible for coverage under UW Health’s Worker’s Compensation policy. Should they suffer an injury/illness students will need work with their school or rely on their personal health insurance coverage.

Refer to UW Health’s Worker’s Compensation Policy 9.17.

If a sponsor agrees to sponsor a student, is it possible for others to also sponsor the same student?

  • It is unlikely the student would have multiple sponsors for their project. Have the student confirm with their school whether they can have multiple sponsors and, if so, under what circumstances multiple project sponsors would be appropriate.
  • If it is confirmed by the school that multiple sponsors are possible and the additional sponsor is confirmed to be appropriate for the project, contact UW Health’s Nursing Student Placement Coordinator to determine next steps.  
  • All students should have a registered nurse with a minimum of a BSN as their sponsor. However, it is recognized some projects may contain a large interprofessional component and the UW Health lead primarily supporting the student may be a non-nurse. 

If a sponsor works out of more than one location (e.g., clinic, hospital), may the student accompany them to these other locations?

  • Are the other locations affiliated with UW Health?
    • If yes: The student may accompany their sponsor after onboarding is completed. All student onboarding requirements (e.g., vaccine and TB testing) are the same regardless of clinical location.
    • If no: The student may not accompany their sponsor as they only have the necessary onboarding paperwork completed through UW Health.

How are students evaluated during their projects?

  • Students are evaluated on their project work in a variety of ways, including through class assignments and discussions where they are encouraged to give feedback. Faculty advisors may also contact the sponsor to evaluate the student’s performance.

How many students can a sponsor take on at a time?

  • We encourage UW Health employees to sponsor only one student at a time.
  • If a sponsor feels they can accommodate more than one student at the same time, or sponsoring more than one student would be valuable to advance the work, the sponsor should discuss with their next level leader to determine workload and prioritization of needs.

Once a sponsor agrees to sponsor a student, are they obligated to sponsor students regularly?

  • No. We recognize that sponsoring a student is time and energy intensive and do not expect someone to sponsor students every semester. If a sponsor is asked about their interest in sponsoring a student, they should say “no” if timing is not right.

How can a sponsor find more information about sponsoring a graduate nursing student project?

Who are the key stakeholders during the sponsor selection and project approval processes?

  • The student’s academic institution’s Clinical Placement Coordinator
  • The student’s faculty advisor
  • UW Health’s Nursing Student Placement Coordinator
  • UW Health’s Program Coordinator for System Strategy
  • The student’s UW Health sponsor
  • The student