What are your Admissions requirements?
- Our admissions requirements are stated directly in the Florida Law, Statute 467. Our applicants must fulfill the following criteria prior to enrollment
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Hold a high school diploma or its equivalent(such as a GED)
- ONE of the following is required:
- Have taken and passed a college level class in both Math and English (in other words, a college level Math class worth 3 credits and a college level English class worth 3 credits)
- Have passed the College Level Equivalent Proficiency (CLEP)
- OR have passed the College Level Academic Scholastic Test (CLAST)
In addition to Florida Law requirements, our applicants must have the following:
- Doula training within the last two (2) years or current Doula Certification. (DONA, CAPPA, please inquire for other training programs)
- We also recognize those who have worked for years as a Doula or Birth Assistant
Recommended but not required:
- Childbirth Education Training within the last two (2) years or current Childbirth Educators Certification. (ICEA, Lamaze, FOCEP, Birthing from Within, CAPPA, please inquire for other training programs)
- A college or AP level Biology or Science course and/or Medical Terminology.
Do I have to be a nurse to become a midwife?
NO, direct-entry midwifery education does not require prior nursing experience. As FSTM is a direct-entry school, we do not require that our students obtain training in nursing.
What is the difference between a direct-entry midwife and a certified nurse midwife?
Direct-Entry Midwifery is based on a model of education used largely in Europe, where midwives are trained from scratch without having to obtain nursing education first. Direct-Entry Midwives (DEM) in the United States are not required to have nursing education and usually practice in out-of-hospital settings.
Certified Nurse Midwives are RN’s who go on to become Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners (ARNP) with special training in midwifery. The majority of their training takes place in the hospital setting.
After I graduate from your program what kind of midwifery practice can I have?
In the state of Florida, DEM’s are called Licensed Midwives or LM’s. (DEM and LM mean the same thing.) According to Florida law, Statute 467, Licensed Midwives practice in homebirth, birth center, or hospital settings. However, LM’s practice almost exclusively in out-of-hospital practices, meaning homebirth or birth centers. This is partly because the direct-entry training prepares them specifically for out-of-hospital practice, and partly because this is the kind of practice most LM’s want to have.
What other states could I practice in after graduation?
The status of DEM’s in the nation varies from state to state. If you would like to research the legal status of DEM’s in all 50 states, you should go to the Midwives Alliance website at www.MANA.org, and click on “Resources”. From there you can find an appropriate map.
What is your tuition?
Our tuition is calculated by credit hour. If you wanted to figure out the tuition for any given semester, you would multiply the number of credits by the current tuition of $375.00 (current Fall 2015). Textbooks for the entire program will cost about $2000, depending on whether you find used books or buy new. We also have lab fees that are applied for certain classes, which total about $800.00 throughout the program as well as professional liability insurance at $225 per year (current Fall 2015). Tuition and fees are subject to change.
Do you have financial aid?
FSTM is currently eligible for Title IV programs such as: Pell, Stafford and Perkins. We also accept Bright Futures funding, Veterans Administration funding, and Vocational Rehabilitation as well as Florida Prepaid and Work Force funding.
We also now offer Sallie Mae funding. Please speak with Kate Ellison (firstname.lastname@example.org), Financial Aid Coordinator, for further information.
Do you accept transfer credit?
Our process for dealing with transfer credit is called Advanced Standing. If you have taken courses or training prior to enrolling at FSTM, you might qualify for Advanced Standing. You must submit an Advanced Standing request form with your application, along with your transcripts and any supporting documentation (i.e. course descriptions, syllabus, catalog, etc). Only classes with substantially equivalent course material will be granted Advanced Standing. Some likely choices are the hard sciences, such as Anatomy & Physiology and Microbiology, Doula, Childbirth Education Lab, and Breastfeeding. The Advanced Standing request fee is $15 per credit.
For which courses can I get Advanced Standing as a Registered Nurse?
Registered Nurses are automatically granted Advanced Standing for a number of courses they regularly complete in nursing school. Those are Anatomy & Physiology I & II, Microbiology, Healthcare Skills I & II, and Pharmacology. RN’s should fill out an Advanced Standing request form, but are not required to pay the request fee.
How does your class schedule work?
As a rule our classes are packed into 1-3 consecutive days per week. We tell our students to plan full days of class, anywhere from 9am-9pm. We do this for our commuting students who live, work, and attend their clinical sites in their home communities, and come to Gainesville for class once per week. We do make every effort to keep the same 1-3 days per week throughout the program for a given group of students to facilitate scheduling of work, childcare, clinic, etc. There are also a few workshop style classes beginning in year 2 that meet only once or twice on a weekend, or otherwise outside the regularly scheduled class days.
Do you have online courses or a distance program?
FSTM does not offer online or distance training. However, we do arrange our class schedule specifically to accommodate commuting students who drive several hours to reach Gainesville.
Do you have commuting students?
Over half of our student body commutes from places like Orlando, Tampa, Tallahassee, or Jacksonville. Our students drive 2-4 hours to get to Gainesville for classes but are stationed near their home communities for their clinical work if sites are available in their area.
Do your provide housing and meals for your students?
No, we do not provide room and board. FSTM is located in a restored Victorian house in East Gainesville. Our students are responsible for finding their own housing, whether in Gainesville or elsewhere, and they bring their own meals. We do, however, have access to a kitchen with a refrigerator and microwave.
Do you accept international students?
Yes, FSTM does accept international students but does not provide visa assistance. Applicants must have their secondary (high school) education evaluated by an independent agency to ensure that it is equivalent to a high school diploma in the United States. Applicants are also responsible for working out the details of their visas and residency in the US. We recommend that they start by contacting the US embassy for details.
I am a midwife from another state or another country. How do I become a Florida Licensed Midwife?
Midwives who are credentialed in another state or another country should look into the Four-Month Licensure by Endorsement program. They will start the process by having their midwifery education evaluated by one of the approved credentialing agencies. If that training meets the requirements for basic equivalence to an education received at an approved Florida school, the applicant is eligible for Licensure by Endorsement (also called a pre-licensure course by the state of Florida). After completing the program, the student may take the national certifying exam administered by NARM (the North American Registry of Midwives), and apply to the state for licensure.