Why does Pennsylvania seem to have so many more CRNA schools than any other state and - page 2

does this create opportunities for those who want to be CRNA's. I am trying to convince my wife that we should move to Pensylvania at least a year BEFORE applying to a CRNA school because it has so... Read More

  1. by   JSB
    What do you all think of part-time CRNA schools? A while back (on a different CRNA message board) someone mentioned that I could look into going part-time. He was a program director at one of the schools in PA - Art Zwerling was his name, I think. If anyone knows or attends part-time, how long is the program, and how does the workload compare with regular programs? I almost think it would be better to bust your bum and get it over with in 27 months.
  2. by   CRHSrn
    from what i've read, the only 'part-time' part of school is the 1st year. it's full speed ahead after that. too bad it's not like other grad programs that give you 6 yrs from time of admission to finish!!!
  3. by   meandragonbrett
    Quote from Roland
    Also, I once asked a question similar to this over a year ago and one of the respondents indicated that in Tenn. some schools showed a preference for instate applicants.
    Yes, the University of Tennessee shows preference to TN residents to keep their state funding of the programs.
  4. by   SnowymtnRN
    Quote from meandragonbrett
    Yes, the University of Tennessee shows preference to TN residents to keep their state funding of the programs.
    I wonder if its the same in all states tho. I know Washington is this way as well.
  5. by   Pete495
    Pennsylvania does hold the most anesthesia schools in the country. Philadelphia is a vast city, and be prepared for driving if you are going to CRNA school in philly because some schools have clinical sites spread out across the philly area, and even into NJ and deleware. The CRNA school I am going to has 5-6 satellite hospitals very far apart, and driving to different clinical sites is the least part I am looking forward to. I will have to move down to the philly area as I am in northeastern pa right now. It is not feasible to live where I am, and go to school in philly. The move is one of the big things I have considered, and it will take some getting used to.

    I know for a fact Univ. of Penn is mucho expensive. I wouldn't go there if you paid me personally, but that is just because their program is not for me.

    Did you know there are also 3 CRNA schools in Pittsburgh? The ones associated with LaRoche College are accepting 20-30 students each. I have a couple RN's in my hospital who were accepted there. Then there is the Univ. of Pitt, which accepts students as well.

    There is also a school in Scranton(private), PA and one at Gannon University in Erie, PA(private). These are also very respectable programs.

    My advice to you is to get accepted to a program before you move. Personally, I would not want to move to a place before I knew what I was doing. If you want to move to PA and get a job before you apply to CRNA school, that would be fine, but I would have a plan in mind well ahead of time.

    You have to be careful too when you look at tuition. The CRNA schools I have looked at have two separate tuitions, one at the college where you pay $ per credit, and then another at the hospital where you may pay a lump sum or $ per credit. Not all are like this, but it's just something to consider. Financially speaking though, you should also consider the taxes, the living expenses(higher rent and cost of living at least from where I am), your availability for loans, and eligibility for hospital loans/scholarships. Many PA hospital scholarships want you to be from PA, and work in PA when you are finished. Also, many pa loans want you to be a resident of pa before they give you loans.

    Hope it all works out. I am glad to be a resident of Pennsylvania though.
  6. by   Roland
    Thanks for the input. One of the reasons that I want to move first is so that we can apply to more schools each year. By that I mean that if we applied from Indiana even three schools per year apiece would be tough if we had to fly across the country for interviews. On the other hand living in PA we might be able to apply to four or five a semester. Thus, even if we are not accepted the first, second, or even third time around over the course of say four years we should get as many as sixty-four attempts between us (applying for both Spring and Fall classes). In addition, if we are unable to gain acceptence into a CRNA program after that time I have heard good things about the FNP, and ACNP programs in PA, as well as the legal scope of practice granted to NP's in the state. As far as financing the plan is to MAX out the Staffords and for the one of us who is NOT accepted to work not only full time as an ICU nurse, BUT also to pick up another twenty hours a week or so with an agency (probably home health care, but we are not picky). From what I've heard although the cost of living is higher in Phillie, so is the average pay for nurses (relative to Pitt.). In addition, it seems as if there are more programs, and thus more chances for acceptence (cetaris paribus). One issue that I would still like to clarify is whether or not getting an NP degree/license absolutely disqualifies you for acceptence at most CRNA programs? Several posters indicated that so doing would probably limit you to those few schools able to award a post, masters certification. Is this absolutely the case?
  7. by   nilepoc
    Quote from Roland
    Thanks for the input. One of the reasons that I want to move first is so that we can apply to more schools each year. By that I mean that if we applied from Indiana even three schools per year apiece would be tough if we had to fly across the country for interviews. On the other hand living in PA we might be able to apply to four or five a semester. Thus, even if we are not accepted the first, second, or even third time around over the course of say four years we should get as many as sixty-four attempts between us (applying for both Spring and Fall classes). In addition, if we are unable to gain acceptence into a CRNA program after that time I have heard good things about the FNP, and ACNP programs in PA, as well as the legal scope of practice granted to NP's in the state. As far as financing the plan is to MAX out the Staffords and for the one of us who is NOT accepted to work not only full time as an ICU nurse, BUT also to pick up another twenty hours a week or so with an agency (probably home health care, but we are not picky). From what I've heard although the cost of living is higher in Phillie, so is the average pay for nurses (relative to Pitt.). In addition, it seems as if there are more programs, and thus more chances for acceptence (cetaris paribus). One issue that I would still like to clarify is whether or not getting an NP degree/license absolutely disqualifies you for acceptence at most CRNA programs? Several posters indicated that so doing would probably limit you to those few schools able to award a post, masters certification. Is this absolutely the case?
    Roland, you are way over analyzing the application process. Apply to about six schools, and make them the ones you absolutely want to go to.

    As for working home care while you are applying, I would think that schools will not look upon this kindly. They want current ICU experience (I realize that you are working ICU). If you work home care, you are not showing dedication to the field of anesthesia, or your efforts to join the field.

    With those thoughts in mind, the nurse practitioner route is also a poor choice, if you want to show your sincere desire to become a CRNA. It seems to me, that you want to become a CRNA, but are not willing to commit to doing so, and are looking for ways to get there, without making the full commitment. If this is the case, it is going to show in your interviews. The application techniques you are describing, make it sound like you are trying to play the odds, instead of making yourself ready for the transition to becomming a CRNA student.

    My personal experience was this. I sent out seven applications, and had a hard time pulling togetherr 21 sincere recommendations for those applications. I was given interviews at all seven schools, and only travelled to interview at one of them, before gaining acceptance to the program I am in currently enrolled in. What I am trying to say, is that your applications should be perfect, not numerous. One good app. is worth way more, than 36 thrown together ones.

    Good luck in your efforts,

    Craig
    Last edit by nilepoc on Feb 27, '04
  8. by   Roland
    You may be misreading what I said. There are two of us and only ONE will be going to CRNA school at a time. However, we will BOTH be applying to CRNA schools at the SAME time with whoever gets accepted first going to school. Thus, my calculations were based upon EACH of us applying to about FOUR schools per semester. The sixty four number assumes that neither of us manage to get accepted after four years of trying.

    The working home health care applies to the person who DOES NOT get accepted. THAT person will work a full time job at some ICU, AND pick up an additional twenty hours per week doing something (agency probably makes the most sense and many of these want you to work in a home setting). However, the person working to support the family will NOT be going to school until the other person graduates from a CRNA program.

    The part about becoming a FNP or ACNP applies ONLY if after four years and sixty four attempts (or something along those lines) neither of us have managed to be accepted into a CRNA program. At that point becoming NP's will probably look very attractive (since we didn't get into a CRNA program after four years of trying). My point was that IF this becomes the case PA has one of the better climates for NP's.

    You say that I over-analyze, but as I have said before I have friends who spend as much time on their FANTASY FOOTBALL teams and playing tournament poker as do I on these sort of plans. Also, you may think that my projections are overly negative, but I believe that it is wise to hope for the best and PLAN for the worst with almost every situation (this drives my wife nuts because I really do apply it to most areas of our life).
    Last edit by Roland on Feb 27, '04
  9. by   New CCU RN
    Quote from Roland
    You may be misreading what I said. There are two of us and only ONE will be going to CRNA school at a time. However, we will BOTH be applying to CRNA schools at the SAME time with whoever gets accepted first going to school. Thus, my calculations were based upon EACH of us applying to about FOUR schools per semester. The sixty four number assumes that neither of us manage to get accepted after four years of trying.

    The working home health care applies to the person who DOES NOT get accepted. THAT person will work a full time job at some ICU, AND pick up an additional twenty hours per week doing something (agency probably makes the most sense and many of these want you to work in a home setting). However, the person working to support the family will NOT be going to school until the other person graduates from a CRNA program.

    The part about becoming a FNP or ACNP applies ONLY if after four years and sixty four attempts (or something along those lines) neither of us have managed to be accepted into a CRNA program. At that point becoming NP's will probably look very attractive (since we didn't get into a CRNA program after four years of trying). My point was that IF this becomes the case PA has one of the better climates for NP's.

    You say that I over-analyze, but as I have said before I have friends who spend as much time on their FANTASY FOOTBALL teams and playing tournament poker as do I on these sort of plans. Also, you may think that my projections are overly negative, but I believe that it is wise to hope for the best and PLAN for the worst with almost every situation (this drives my wife nuts because I really do apply it to most areas of our life).
    Roland,

    What if the one who didn't go did travel nursing instead? You could stay in your home area...or I should say school area... make a slightly higher hourly wage and have a housing allowance.. you can opt to recieve a stipend rather than live in their housing... I know one gal who has been at the same facility for FOUR YEARS as a traveler... just a thought...
  10. by   Roland
    The travel nursing sounds interesting, but how common is it to be able to stay in a general area. We have a three year old son so it is important that we be able to stay together as a family as much as is possible (hopefully my mother in law who lives with us now will also be coming, since we pay her to help with childcare and in the future possibly homeschooling). If I could find a travel position that would keep me within about two hours of where the other person went to school that would probably work.
  11. by   Pete495
    I agree with Craig. I think you should be spending more time preparing and marketing yourself to be a CRNA. I think it's absolutely great that you have a plan set forth. But I also think you should keep it simple. What Craig is saying is do everything you can to make yourself a better CRNA, and you won't need so many applications for CRNA school. You know how many applications I sent out in one year? I sent out 3. I was asked for interviews at every one of them, but I only interviewed at 2 of them (just my preference). I also only picked the schools that I thought would accept me, and that I felt I was comfortable with. It takes a lot of time and energy to prepare yourself for interviews and your future education. But I went with my gut, and knew where I wanted to go after the second interview. The reason I picked so few schools is because I completed all the prerequisites for entering CRNA school, and I felt I was a good candidate before I applied. I've spent the last 4 years preparing for it. Personally speaking, I don't think anyone should have to submit over 5 applications. CRNA school is competitive, but if you have to submit that many applications, maybe you should wait a little longer and make yourself more marketable.

    I'm not sure I understand your question or even rationale about the FNP route. My feeling is you should choose one or the other. If you don't get in the first year, I would continue to practice in an ICU as an RN, and obtain your critical care certifications (acls, pals, ccrn,etc), which by the sounds of it is your plan i think. This will be looked at more favorably by any entrance committee for crna school, esp. the second time around. Don't waste your time with FNP if you want to be a CRNA. You can think about that later if you really want to. NP is a different world. From what I know though, most schools in pa(except for maybe 2 or 3) offer a post master's degree in nurse anesthesia, an MSN, or even just an MS in health care. Each school is individualized, so you'll have to look at the school's specs for more info on the particular degree they offer.

    Hope it all works out. If you decide to move to PA, look me up.

    Pete495
  12. by   SnowymtnRN
    Quote from Roland
    The travel nursing sounds interesting, but how common is it to be able to stay in a general area. We have a three year old son so it is important that we be able to stay together as a family as much as is possible (hopefully my mother in law who lives with us now will also be coming, since we pay her to help with childcare and in the future possibly homeschooling). If I could find a travel position that would keep me within about two hours of where the other person went to school that would probably work.
    Its doable. We've been doing the travel thing (DH is that is) and traveling within the same area. We have 2 kids, one on the way. Not ideal for everyone, but we make it work when we need to. In a place like Philly or Pittsburgh, i dont' think it would be a problem for a seasoned ICU nurse to pick up contracts left and right with great benefits.
  13. by   New CCU RN
    Quote from Roland
    The travel nursing sounds interesting, but how common is it to be able to stay in a general area. We have a three year old son so it is important that we be able to stay together as a family as much as is possible (hopefully my mother in law who lives with us now will also be coming, since we pay her to help with childcare and in the future possibly homeschooling). If I could find a travel position that would keep me within about two hours of where the other person went to school that would probably work.
    Well, if you live in an area of a high nursing shortage.... and there is a need then I don't think you would run into any issues... and if u are willing to commute you absolutely would be fine....

    I am starting traveling at the end of May bc my SO is in full time grad school and so we are living on one income.... I can be a test run...lol... the way I see it...... 1) I can always go back to the hospital I am currently at 2) There are at least 15 hospitals in a 45 mile radius of me 3) You can extend contracts and I plan on signing the longest contracts possible.... 4) It is temporary...... it is a little scary..... bc you do have to do job hunting every so often but it will be great to see new ways of doing things, get a new perspective, break out of the routine going to the same place everyday, still care for ICU patients, still gaining good experience, show that you are flexible... I could go on....... you first need some experience under ur belt... but after that I don't see why someone wouldn't consider it...

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