I'm a student in Drexel's Post-Masters CRNA program. I start in the January 2014 class but I am currently taking some of the core courses now, such as Advanced Pharmacology and in the spring quarter, I will take Advanced Physiology. For the traditional MSN CRNA program, it would be better for you to take the 7 core classes, which are all offered online. This will definitely cut down on your course load, which allows you to concentrate on just your anesthesia classes. The one thing among many that I love about Drexel is they select students 1-2 years before their cohort begins and during that time, they kind of expect you to take your core courses so you can concentrate on your true love...anesthesia, without having to worry about writing papers for the core courses, which will take away your time from studying.
You are correct that if you take your core courses before the program starts, you will end up only taking 2 classes a quarter and as the year goes on, they will drop to some quarters with you having only 1-2 classes, which is a great deal compared to other programs. Also, since Drexel is an integrated program, you start clinicals the second quarter of starting the program and it starts off as 1 day a week for the spring and summer quarter and then advances to 2 days and then more days as each quarter goes by.
Unlike many CRNA programs, Drexel also has Fellowships for CRNA students in pediatric anesthesia or pediatric cardiothoracic anesthesia which is great for those who want to specialize in a sub-specialty.
I have 2 friends who just started in the Jan 2013 cohort and they took all their core courses before the program started and for their first quarter, they only have 2 classes they are taking. Many of the senior students I have talked with said they were able to work PRN with such a reduced course load even though I wouldn't recommend it. Their grading scale is a tad bit different since they use pluses and minuses in the grading scale. So for your classes, you maintain a B average and a grade of B start off at an 84. If you get an 83, that would be a B-. I liked it better when a B was an 80-89 and an A was 90-100. You need to ensure you get an 84 or higher in your classes to pass. Also, an A+ is a 99-100 and an A is 95-98. I think it's a weird grading scale but the core classes aren't that bad. Also, since the school is on a quarter system, we cover a lot of material in a short amount of time. A quarter is about 10 weeks. My pharmacology professor is awesome and a great teacher. So far I have an A+ in the class. Some of the students in the class are in the same cohort with me knocking their core classes out.
Good luck to you.