Route to becoming a CRNA

  1. What route do you guys suggest? My mother, which is a nurse, and I have been told both routes. 2 year, then RN-BSN while working in SICU, then CRNA school, or 4 year BSN then to CRNA school. What would you recomend? I still have one year but it's not far off. Just let me know what you would say and why.

    Thanks,
    Brett
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. by   smogmatt
    Brett,

    I saw this post was a little old but had not been responded to. heres my 2 cents.

    I would suggest the adn 2 yr Rn and then do a RN to BSN or BS in something else, I finished my ADN and now am working in a busy ICU I cant imangine being stuck in school still, I have a buddy that wants to be a Flight Nurse he desided to do the 4 yr program. He is still in school while I am working and applying for CRNA programs. I was also able to work as a LPN and OR Scrub Teck. while going to school. My BSN is almost done, plus my hospital is paying for it!! cant beat that. you need to check into what your local colleges are offering. Sometimes the RN-BSN ends up to be a longer route.

    hope this helps

    Matt
  4. by   AL bug
    I did the ADN then RN-BSN. I worked in the MICU while I did the BSN. The only change I would have made would be that I would have gotten my BS in chemistry or biology instead of BSN. I have posted that here before, but I don't think the stuff you get in the RN-BSN has one thing to do with anesthesia. Then again, I don't like nursing theory classes. If you are going to a school where you get a MSN, you may want to get BSN so you get the research and all that nursing theory. I think it would make it easier for the MSN. But if you are going somewhere where you get MS or master of something besides nursing, I say go ADN and BS in a related field.
  5. by   alansmith52
    I did the adn thang to and I am gettig my experince while finishing my BSN. I have thought it a good plan i've been able to work and support my family.
    matt
  6. by   kmchugh
    Brett

    I'm not going to tell you what to do, but there are advantages and disadvantages to both routes. Whichever route you take, the total time in school will end up being about the same (provided you are diligent), so don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

    Going the ADN route puts you into the workforce earning money faster, which is a definite advantage. The downside is that while you are working on your BSN, you will not only have to contend with your school responsibilities but work responsibilities as well. Some places you work might give you problems working your schedule around a school schedule, which tends to be pretty inflexible. Beyond that, I have met more than one ADN planning on being a CRNA who essentially got lazy after earning their ADN. They were working, out of school, and earning a living. They wanted to have a little fun, and found additional school work was just a drag. In fact, I was told by one this week that she had decided not to go any further right now, because "she just couldn't get back into the swing of school." I've read your previous posts, and I know you are pretty determined, so I don't really think you would have that problem.

    ADN programs are great for teaching the clinical side of things, but have a little less in the hard science prerequisite requirements than most BSN programs. I know you have taken chem and (I think) physics in high school, so this wouldn't really be a problem either.

    A BSN program takes longer, and involves prerequisites that don't really have much relation to your goals. However, you can take classes as electives (such as elementary physics and a level two chemistry course) that will help you when you get into a CRNA program. Also, most BSN programs will require a statistics class, and almost all, if not all, CRNA programs require a statistics class as a prerequisite for entry. But, a BSN program puts you in school for two more years without earning RN salary.

    I went the BSN, work, CRNA school route, and it worked well for me. But remember, I am a disabled veteran, so my BSN was paid for, lock, stock and barrel by the US Government. This payment went so far as to pay for my nursing uniforms needed for clinicals, and equipment such as a stethoscope, etc. When I was done, I owed the government nothing, so I had fewer money worries than most college students.

    My daughter, who is now 20, has decided she wants to be a CRNA. She is taking the ADN route, and I think its going to work well for her. (And yes, I am both very proud and very flattered.) We have worked together to map out a strategy for her, and I think she will do well.

    Bottom line: I know you to be a motivated, dedicated student. Either path should work well for you. So, the decision rests with you. Examine the advantages and disadvantages of both paths, and decide which works best for you. Follow that path with determination, and you will do fine. Remember, whichever path you choose, you have a lot of hard work ahead of you. Your fellow students are probably not going to be as dedicated as you, and will look down on you for the hard work you are doing. Stick with your plan. You may not be able to party hearty in college, but just remember how much more partying you will be able to do a few years down the line, when you are earning 120 - 150 K and your college classmates are earning 30 - 50 K as staff nurses. The extra 100 K equals much better, much higher quality party time. Stick with it.

    Kevin McHugh
    Last edit by kmchugh on Jul 29, '02
  7. by   London88
    Brett

    One thing to consider if you choose to take the ADN, then BSN route is that many employers will give you tuition reimbursement. I was able to complete my BSN, and only had to pay for six credits out of my own pocket, and that is because I changed employers during that time. Like Kevin said if you are dedicated you will achieve your goals. I completed my BSN with four children, two of which are four year old twins, work full time in an ICU, and still graduated with a GPA of 3.81. Why did I do this? Because I want to become a CRNA. I am on the right track as I have been accepted in a program. So, the point being made is that dedication and motivation will take you a long way.
  8. by   meandragonbrett
    I just wanted to update you all on my decision as of now. I'm planning on attending one of the two BSN programs here in town. One of the reasons for this is, my mom's in the RN-BSN here in town and it's been nothing but busy work and i've helped her do quite a bit of it. I am also planning on going to school during the summers as well. I will be talking College Algebra and some of the other "Non-Nursing" courses this summer before the actual program begins in august. Thanks for all of your help! Y'all are a good group of people that have helped to keep me motivated during the school when I'm unable to be working in the hospital.

    Thanks again!
    Brett
  9. by   meandragonbrett
    UGHHH!!! I just had a nice long post typed out then my computer messed up! Don't you HATE it when that happens! Here's the jist of what I said. Thanks for all your help, you guys have helped me stay motivated when I'm unable to work at the hospital. And that as of now I'm going to go to a BSN program here and I'm going to take some of the non-nursing classes starting this summer. Thanks a bunch Y'all!

    Brett
  10. by   meandragonbrett
    Ok, this is the THIRD time i've typed this so it's going to be short and sweet. I'm going to take non nursing classes starting Summer 03. I'm going to go to a BSN program b\c all of the hospitals here, their tuition payment things ALL have MAJOR strings attached. I also want to say thanks to everybody on the board for keeping me motivated during the school year b\c I don't work during school which means i'm not in the hospital. Thanks guys!

    Brett
  11. by   meandragonbrett
    Ok, this is the 3rd time i've typed this message and it's gotten shorter everytime. I'm going to take some non nursing classes during Summer 03. I'm going to go to a BSN program b\c all of the hospitals here, their tuition payment plan thing have major trings attached the hospital i'm working at now, requires you to work for them 5 years, and I don't think I really need to be tied up into that, what do you guys think? Thanks everybody for your advice and comments. I love this board!

    Brett
  12. by   AL bug
    Hey Brett, we got it Just kidding, my computer did the same thing last night and I was upset. I think you will be satisfied with your decision. Another bad side to the ADN-BSN is that I had to take 8, yes 8 classes between the ADN and RN-BSN program. It's awesome that you have a career path chosen already. I stumbled in to nursing because I had to chose a major that fall. I had no idea CRNA's existed, but I sure am glad I was exposed to it the second semester of nursing school and decided then to pursue. It has been a long and hard, considering I am only 25 and I've had 1 year out of school since I was 4. Hope everything falls into place for you.
  13. by   fence
    I know both routes can be very trying. I went the BSN Route. My wife went LPN-ADN. We have been taking turns going to school. I am hoping now to become a CRNA and just let my wife be a mom. Although she is a workaholic and will probably never slow down...lol
  14. by   FritoPie
    I agree with Kevin, meandragonbrett, about the BSN. I get so sick of school sometimes I could just scream, so I know if I went ADN (which was my original plan) I would likely get stuck in the working thing and probably decide to just chill and make some money for a while. Also, I have found that there are quite a few classes that most RN-BSN bridge programs "skip" that are usually considered musts or at least looked well upon when applying to CRNA school. I plan on finishing my BSN (still in first year), then working in ICU for a year while taking more sciences courses - any of those that weren't required for my BSN. This way there is no time lost and I make sure I stay on track with my plans and do not get out of the school groove. Oh and Kevin, I know exactly what you are talking about with other classmates - I am constantly called the overachiever by my classmates. They always saying it jokingly, but it does not bother me, I am proud to be the one holding a solid "A" while they are begging the professor for a curve. They tell me to chill because I am messing up their curve, but the funny thing is I have yet to be in a class where the professor gave a curve. These are the people who went to the parties when you stayed home and studied and they chose their path so do not let them get you down. They'll be calling you when its time to study for finals.

    Linda

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