Advice From One Who Knows

  1. GREETINGS ALL. a LITTLE MORE GUIDANCE IF YOU DON'T MIND.i AM A 47 YEAR OLD FEMALE WHO STARTED SCHOOL RELATIVELY LATE IN LIFE (32) i HAVE A BS-BIOLOGY WITH A CONCENTRATION IN NUCLEAR MEDICINE AND A BS-BIOLOGY WITH A CONCENTRATION IN NURSING, ALL ACQUIRED OVER THE PAST 10 - 15 YEARS.I HAVE BEEN WORKING AS AN ED STAFF NURSE TRAUMA LEVEL 3 SINCE SEPT,2001. i AM SEEKING ENTRANCE TO NE UNIV FOR CRNA BUT DUE TO MY LIMITED NURSING EXPERIENCE AND DESIRE TO BE PART-TIME STUDENT, I AM APPLYING TO THE ADULT CRITICAL CARE PRACTITIONER AS THESE TWO PROGRAMS SHARE THE SAME CORE COURSES.I WILL SEEK A PART TIME POSITION IN A BIG ICU PENDING ACCEPTANCE TO THE PROGRAM.THE DIRECTOR OF NE UNIV CRNA PROGRAM SUGGESTED THIS STRATEGY AS A WAY TO POSITION MYSELF ATTRACTIVELY FOR ADIMTTANCE TO THE CRNA.I AM SEEKING YOUR OVER-ALL COMMENTS AS TO MY AGE AND EXPERIENCE.MY GPA OVER-ALL IS > 3.8,BUT MY ANALYTICAL SCORE ON THE GRE WAS <450,TOTAL SCORE 1100.THANKS FOR YOUR TIME AND CONTINUED SUCCESS WITH YOUR CAREER.
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   lgcv
    How long before you want to start the CRNA program? If it is soon then you should go ahead and switch to ICU.
    Recognize that while the CRNA program in that school will accept the courses taken through the ACNP program, other schools probably won't. Just FYI if you decide to go through a different school.
    Your GRE is low for most CRNA programs, I believe that most want as least a 500 on both verbal and quantitative, the analytical section is not as important but getting it up can increase your overall score. I would buy one of the Kaplan/Petersons books, study it, and re-take the GRE, this will put you in a much more competetive position.
    Ask the program director what the view on part time ICU nurses is. Make sure that it will not be something they look less favorably on in the selection process.
    GPA looks good, you should have no problem there. Your age is not an issue, the ages in my class range from 25y/o to 50y/o.
    Hope that helps a little, good luck!
  4. by   ma kettle
    Most of the programs that I have applied for only look at a GRE of 1500. They like a gpa of 3.0 or better. But many state that if GPA was low because youth and not studing as one should then they take that into consideration. The experience I found, in my interviews is they like the more aggressive ICU setting. For example, even though I have 11 years Progressivecare, Recovery and ED experience and then ICU/CCU experience in a community hosptial,3years this was not good enough for 4 of 5 schools. 3 of 5 reccommended moving to a city hospital here that has very sick unstable patients.
    All will say that they try to weigh experience, grades and graduate entrance exam score to the person and the interview.
    I will try again next year. But good luck to all that are about to start school.
    I also believe that when they interview 8o people for 10 positions they already know who they want.
    Sandy
  5. by   SUZIEG
    THANKS TO ALL WHO REPLIED. I AM SOMEWHAT DISHEARTENED BY THE COMMENTS VIS-A-VIS THE GRE SCORES AND HOPE THAT THE REST OF MY ACADEMIC RECORD WILL BOLSTER MY APPLICATION. AS TO THE CORE COURSE REQUIREMENTS BEING SHARED BETWEEN THE ACNP AND CRNA, I THINK NE UNIV DOES THIS TO FACILITATE THE DEMAND IN THE CRNA PROGRAM AND ALLOW FOR PART-TIME STUDY,AT ANY RATE IT CERTAINLY APPEALS TO ME.NE UNIV IS ALSO TAKING 25% OF THE TUITION FOR ALL GRADUATE NURSING PROGRAMS AS AN INCENTIVE TO PROMOTE CONTINUING EDUCATION IN NURSING.HOW MUCH WEIGHT DID THE LETTERS OF RECOMMENDTION BEAR IN YOUR ACCEPTANCE TO CRNA PROGRAMS? DID ANY OF YOU FEEL THAT THE CURRENT NURSING SHORTAGE AND ATTRITION RATE IN UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAMS WILL PROVE BENEFICIAL TO CANDIDATES LIKE MYSELF?
  6. by   Doug Cameron
    Hi Suzie. I am finding that the nursing shortage has not changed the very competitive nature of CRNA programs. Nurses are leaving nursing for a variety of other pursuits - anesthesia being one of them. I am very encouraged to hear about the U of NE tuition reduction, though. I am in MA as well, and was looking at UNE and Northeastern (as well as a bunch of others out of state). Have you looked at other schools as well? Are you able to relocate?
  7. by   kmchugh
    Suzieg

    First, you can retake the GRE. Before I took it, I bought a CR ROM from Kaplan (I think) and studied that. I took both the pre-test and post-test, and after completing the course of study on the CD, I increased my scores by at least 15-20% on every section. I ended up doing very well on the GRE itself, so I strongly believe in these study programs. Since most programs require 1200-1500 score on the GRE, retaking the test will be necessary.

    As for your age, I've said elsewhere on this topic that I knew of a CRNA who graduated from the Texas Wesleyan program when she was 55 years old. I myself did not start my program until I was one month shy of my 40th birthday, so age is not a problem.

    The letters you asked about are important, but selection committees look at them knowing you are only going to ask people for recommendations if you know they will give you glowing recommendations. So, they are helpful, but rarely are they the deciding factor.

    There is a shortage of nurses, and there is a shortage of nurse anesthetists. Unfortunately, this does not translate into a shortage of applicants for the limited number of school seats in anesthesia programs, and competition is tight. So, as I have said before, do everything you can to not give the admission committee a reason not to select you.

    Kevin McHugh, CRNA
  8. by   kmchugh
    Oops. I said earlier I bought the Kaplan review CR-ROM for the GRE. My goof. What I bought was the Princeton Review for the GRE CD-ROM. In my opinion, that CD was well organized to take me completely through my GRE prep. However, this is not an advertisement, and "your results may vary." Bottom line, before you take (or retake) the GRE, find a review source, be it book or CD-ROM, and review. Particularly review the tips for making taking the various sections of the test easier. The Princeton review had tips to make working some kinds of problems much quicker, which cut down considerably on the time it took me to take the test, with much higher results, to boot.

    Kevin McHugh
  9. by   ma kettle
    I used the Kaplan version. It had a cd rom as well. One nice feature I found was it had you take the test then pin-pointed your weakness and set up what they called a road map for study.
    I did do better the second time. Although my score was better, it needs to be done again.
    I did take the Millers Aptitude Test, MAT, I also reviewed for it. I took the paper and pencil version. I did much better here.
    I really wish that the paper version was still done on the GRE. I feel I could have done much better. I was tought to take tests via paper and pencil. That way you could skip a question you didnot know and come back to it later. That way if you suffered from a brain cramp, some other question may jog the memory. For me the computer takes some getting use to in its self. For me I don't really feel it gives a true indicator as to ability and therefore was not a predictor of future ability. But, I can say that making the old flash cards especially for the word section increases accuracy and time spent on words. So here is a section you can build a score. There is a web site : 800score.comGRE test that provided example tests and words for study. Good luck to you all taking these tests.

    Sandy
  10. by   lgcv
    Sandy, the next time you take the GRE look at the bottom of the screen, there is a place to mark a question, once a question has been marked the computer will go back so that you can review it....if you are finished before the alotted time.

    The analytical section is the easiest one to increase your score on as it is just a matter of drawing tables, then all you have to do is look at your graph to determine an answer. The GRE prep books all tell you how to do it.
    When I said 500 earlier I meant 500 verbal PLUS 500 quantitative, Total of a 1000 on those portions alone, is required by most schools. Again, analytical does not really come into the selection, except as overall score, or if comparing two equally qualified candidates.
  11. by   SUZIEG
    GOOD MORNING ALL,


    NO, AT THIS TME I CANNOT CONSIDER RELOCATING. HAS ANYONE ELSE
    CONSIDERED PART TIME IN THE CCNP PRGRAM AT NORTHEASTERN UNV BEFORE APPLYING TO THEIR CRNA PROGRAM?
    AGAIN, I APPRECIATE THE DISCUSSION RE' GRE SCORES. MY VERBAL SCORE WAS 700 BUT I REALY LET MY END DOWN IN THE QUANTITATIVE/ANALYTICAL SECTION. I AM GOING TO SEE HOW I FARE IN MY APPLICATION TO THE CCNP PROGRAM BEFORE CONSIDERING A RETAKE.IT SEEMS TO ME T HAT IF YOU HAVE PROVED THAT YOU CAN DO THE WORK IN YOUR ACADEMIC PROGRAMS THAT THESE SNAPSHOT EXAMS ARE POOR INDICATORS OF ONE'S NATIVE INTELLIGENCE, BUT...............
  12. by   ma kettle
    IGCV, OOPS... I didnot know that ? mark at the bottom was for that particular purpase. , I had even asked the test moderator about this particular questions. She explained to me you couldnot go back because the computer made the decision about the next question based on the answer you just gave. So thanks for the tip.
    Sandy
  13. by   lgcv
    Sandy,
    Now that you said that (increasing difficulty of questions) I am not as sure about being able to go back. I have taken a lot of computer exams and may be confusing them. It seems to me that I was able to mark questions on the GRE as well but I could be wrong. Call ETS and ask to be sure. Sorry if I gave the wrong information
  14. by   lgcv
    I checked the website, you can not mark questions on the GRE. Sorry about giving you the wrong information.

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Advice From One Who Knows