Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center nurses have unparalleled opportunities in a professional climate of true collaboration and respect.

Professional partners

It takes a team to deliver the highest quality health care. At Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, our 3,200 professional nurses are valued members of that team. They work in an environment that supports their professional development, career advancement, education, participation in research and much more.

Magnet designated hospital

Hershey Medical Center is a Magnet designated hospital. This prestigious designation reaffirms the value of the hard work and dedication our nurses exhibit every day. We are also central Pennsylvania’s only academic, Level I regional trauma center and quaternary care provider.

Whether you are an experienced nurse or a new graduate, explore our website and experience our enthusiasm and commitment to excellence in nursing. A climate of true collaboration and respect awaits you.

Exciting opportunities

Our nurses provide quality, family-centered care in many settings and roles. We use the Shared Governance nursing model, which gives us a reliable framework for delivering care. And with patients from all walks of life, our nurses handle patient needs at every level of complexity.

Professional Practice Model

Professional Practice Model

Nursing excellence is a goal we pursue at every opportunity. To help ensure that we meet our goals, we rely on Hershey Medical Center’s Nursing Professional Practice Model. This model uses the Nittany Lion’s paw to depict the systematic integration of nursing practice with our mission, vision and values.

This schematic displays the four components of the Magnet Model® using the digits of the lion’s paw. These include transformational leadership, structural empowerment, exemplary professional practice and new knowledge, innovations and improvements. 

The central pad of the paw represents the nursing care delivery system, which is central to nursing practice. It embodies the nursing care and processes that are crucial to providing extraordinary care, and also our values of respect, integrity, teamwork and excellence.

Our practice model also includes five principles of the care delivery system. These include inter-professional collaboration, staffing and scheduling, quality and safety outcomes, integrated technology and care transitions.

Download our Professional Practice Model (PDF)

Shared Governance Model

Shared Governance Model

Our Shared Governance model empowers our nurses to take the lead on issues such as patient safety, clinical practice, professional development, education, performance improvement, evidence-based practice and much more. It is the foundation for excellence in patient care.

Nurses from every unit at Hershey Medical Center hold positions on various unit-based and hospital-wide councils. These councils provide a formal mechanism for our nursing staff to have an impact on positive and collaborative change throughout the organization. With this system, we identify opportunities that will improve the quality of patient care, efficiency of operations and professional growth.

Nursing departmental councils include:

  • Nursing Executive Council, which ensures successful attainment of nursing strategic goals
  • Clinical Services Management Council, which ensures the effective and efficient use of resources and systems to support nursing care, education, quality and research
  • Professional Collaborative Nursing Council, which ensures the safe, high-quality delivery of nursing care; ensures a healthy work environment and staff engagement; coordinates quality and safety activities for the Nursing Department; integrates hospital-wide quality and safety initiatives; and ensures competent staff and a continuous learning environment to increase the level of staff expertise and knowledge.
  • Nursing Reward and Recognition Sub-council, which seeks to recognize the value and meaningfulness of each employee to the organization's work through multiple recognition activities throughout the year at the hospital, department and unit level.
  • Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Council, which ensures the development, utilization and dissemination of nursing research.
  • Advanced Practice Advisory Council, which provides a forum for all Advanced Practice Nurses (APNs) and Physician Assistants (PA-Cs) to participate in decisions that affect their practice, education, research activities and the quality of their work environment.

Nursing Professional Practice Model Components

The Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center Nursing Professional Practice Model shows how nurses practice, collaborate, communicate, and develop professionally to provide the highest quality care for those we serve in every setting where nursing care is delivered. The schematic uses the Nittany Lion’s paw to depict the systematic integration of nursing practice with our mission, vision, and values. The digits of the paw are formed by the four components of the Magnet Model®. The concepts and constructs of the nursing system are aligned with the Magnet Model components.

Transformational Leadership is evident through strategic partners, advocacy, and influence. The Senior Vice President and Chief Nursing Officer sets expectations for nursing staff through open communication, visibility, and accessibility; and is an advocate for nursing practice that promotes high quality, safe patient care. The leadership of vice presidents of nursing, nursing directors, managers, and clinical staff leaders emulate the transformational style of the CNO to advocate for resources and influence change in their respective nursing practice areas.

Structural Empowerment is evident in our community service, shared governance, and professionalism. Our nurses partner with the community to promote health and wellness. Nurses participate in shared governance as representatives and resource members of department and unit councils. Professionalism is supported and sustained through programs for obtaining advanced degrees and specialty certification; pursuing continuing education; and attending professional nursing conferences.

Exemplary Professional Practice is evident by adherence to the ANA Scope and Standards of Practice, participation in our Clinical Ladder program, and compliance with regulatory standards. The domains of practice that define each level of the Clinical Ladder are congruent with the ANA Scope and Standards for nursing practice. Competency assessments assure that our nurses deliver safe, ethical, and evidenced based nursing care.

New Knowledge, Innovations, and Improvements are evident through nursing research and evidence-based practice that guides our nursing care. Nurses at all levels evaluate, apply, and disseminate results of evidenced-based practice, quality improvement, and research projects. Nursing Research and Evidence-Based Practice Council provides the infrastructure for monitoring processes and outcomes of the scholarly work of nurses.

Nursing Care Delivery System Principles

The Nursing Care Delivery System is integrated as the central component of the Professional Practice Model; and is depicted in the schematic by the pad of the Nittany Lion paw. The Care Delivery System embodies the nursing care and processes crucial to providing an Extraordinary Patient and Family Experience depicted at the center of the schematic. Our nursing values align with the organization’s values of respect, integrity, teamwork, and excellence. These values underpin our actions and interactions with others and therefore we say with confidence that We Care, We Innovate, We Inspire, We Commit, We Partner—We are Nursing at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.

Five principles of the Care Delivery System are identified in the sections that surround the patient and family experience: Interprofessional collaboration, staffing and scheduling, quality and safety outcomes, integrated technology, and care transitions. These principles explain the context of care, describe mechanisms and skills for nursing care delivery; and consider the outcomes for safe quality nursing care.

Interprofessional Collaboration means that we function in teams and that communication is key to successful teamwork. Interprofessional collaboration results in positive outcomes for patients and families and promotes a healthy work environment.

Staffing and Scheduling ensures that every patient is cared for by highly qualified nurses within a system of support that partners with all levels of nursing staff. Patient care assignments are made matching knowledge and skill to fulfill patient care needs and promote continuity of care.

Quality and Safety Outcomes result from the process and structure of the Nursing Care Delivery System. Nurses participate in quality improvement activities and apply evidence based nursing care. Outcomes of our nursing interventions are measured against national benchmarks.

Integrated Technology assists nurses in providing patients with safe, quality care. In addition, the prudent use of advanced technology creates a better workplace for nurses and contributes to improvements in patient care.

Care Transitions focuses on providing patients with the right care at the right time in the right setting. Nurses and care coordinators assist patients and families along the care continuum to ensure holistic care that is part of the extraordinary patient and family experience.


The DAISY (Diseases Attacking the Immune System) award recognizes nurses for delivering skillful, compassionate care.

The award was created in memory of Patrick Barnes who died at the age of 33 of complications of idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura (ITP). 

The DAISY Foundation was established by Patrick's family to keep his spirit alive. The primary mission of the DAISY Foundation is to express profound gratitude to nurses for the work they do for patients and their families every day.

Download the DAISY award application (PDF)

About Hershey

Hershey is a thriving resort town of 20,000 people, approximately 12 miles from the state capital of Harrisburg. This prime location provides residents with various employment, cultural and recreational opportunities attractive to all ages. Hershey Medical Center is the fourth largest employer in the area, providing jobs for nearly 7,000 residents.

Hershey began as a small settlement named Derry Church. The community was renamed Hershey after philanthropist Milton S. Hershey. His legacy includes two corporations, a model community and a school that cares for more than 1,400 disadvantaged children.

Residents of Hershey can enjoy the numerous daily attractions that draw hundreds of thousands of visitors every year, including Hersheypark, Hershey Stadium, Giant Center (home of the Hershey Bears), Hershey Museum and Theater, Hershey Gardens, and ZooAmerica.

Learn more about the Hershey area