BSN at WGU to CRNA.

  1. 1
    I was wondering if anyone that has obtained their BSN at WGU was having trouble getting into a CRNA program. From what I have been researching most CRNA programs focus heavily on your BSN GPA, and type of CVICU/CCU experience. I understand that WGU'S BSN program is a pass/fail type program with a set 3.0 GPA. Please correct me if any of my information is wrong. I am very interesting in applying to WGU's BSN program. Any input/advice is greatly appreciated.
    Ceci81 likes this.

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  2. 25 Comments...

  3. 0
    Quote from KbmRN
    I was wondering if anyone that has obtained their BSN at WGU was having trouble getting into a CRNA program. From what I have been researching most CRNA programs focus heavily on your BSN GPA, and type of CVICU/CCU experience. I understand that WGU'S BSN program is a pass/fail type program with a set 3.0 GPA. Please correct me if any of my information is wrong. I am very interesting in applying to WGU's BSN program. Any input/advice is greatly appreciated.
    I'm curious, as well. I was aware that their program is a graded as pass/fail but do other schools/employers recognize it as a 3.0 GPA? I heard yes & no...
  4. 5
    I got my BSN through WGU and was accepted to 3 of the 4 programs I applied to the first time. I graduated from CRNA school this August (2012). My exerience was far more important than academics. Where you work and what kind of ICU is more important than where you get your degree. I think that if your experience is questionable the academics becomes more important.
    Rosa_G, Anaiyah, Ziglar1, and 2 others like this.
  5. 0
    Thank you for your input, that was very helpful.
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    Indi, Do you mind sharing which schools you applied to?

    I am in the exact same position as OP. I already have a non nursing BS and also a related, but non nursing MS degree. I want to get the BSN FAST and CHEAP. WGU is soooo tempting in that regard. Why would I want to spend 18 months and upwards of $15,000 on another BS degree if I don't have to?

    I have near 4.0 GPA in all three of my degrees (BS, MS, and ADN). I have been a practicing RN for 6 years. I have 2+ years experience in ICU -plus pediatrics, neonatal ICU, obstetrics (ante- and post-partum), med-surg, and telemetry/stepdown. I say this not to brag but to put a perspective on the following:

    I called a program director for a CRNA program I was interested in to feel out her opinion on the WGU BSN (prior to applying to any BSN program). She had not heard of WGU before, so I briefly explained the pass/fail grading process and the competency based approach. And I stressed that yes, the WGU program is fully accredited. I told her that some schools interpret the "pass" as a 3.0 which worries me because that is not a competitve GPA for CRNA applicants.

    Her response to me was something along the lines of "it would be hard for you to compete against other applicants who had already demonstrated professional nursing competency through a traditional BSN program with strong GPA."


    Really? So now a BSN is what demonstrates nursing competancy. I understand what she is saying, I guess, but I just find the notion a little bit .....strange. And sad.


    She did not say ANYTHING to me about looking at other factors such as experience, GPA with non-BSN degrees, GRE scores, or strong interview performance. At least for this one director at this one CRNA program, it seems the WGU BSN would be a quick dealbreaker for the admitting committee.

    So I am very interested in hearing about other schools which favorably recognize a WGU BSN!!
    KbmRN likes this.
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    Indi, Do you mind sharing which schools you applied to?
    Minneapolis School of Anesthesia , St.Mary's University in Minneapolis, University of MN (not accepted), Franciscan Healthcare School of Anesthesia in La Crosse WI.

    I am in the exact same position as OP. I already have a non nursing BS and also a related, but non nursing MS degree. I want to get the BSN FAST and CHEAP. WGU is soooo tempting in that regard. Why would I want to spend 18 months and upwards of $15,000 on another BS degree if I don't have to?
    Indeed why are you getting a BSN at all? Only about half my class had BSNs. I have known RNs to go to anesthesia school with dregees in dairy science, english, forestry, biology, chemistry, education and others.

    I have near 4.0 GPA in all three of my degrees (BS, MS, and ADN). I have been a practicing RN for 6 years. I have 2+ years experience in ICU -plus pediatrics, neonatal ICU, obstetrics (ante- and post-partum), med-surg, and telemetry/stepdown. I say this not to brag but to put a perspective on the following:
    LOL it never occured to me that might be bragging. Your experience is pretty lite. Nothing counts except ICU experience and the kind of unit makes all the difference. Over half my class were all from the same unit of the same hospital and former RNs form that unit are heavily represented in local CRNA programs. This particular SICU has a large open heart program and is a trauma center. SICU nurses are expected to practice with tremdous autonomy and get constant experience with the sickest of the sick patients with very little physician support. For example on nights the resident that covers the SICU also covers trauma and emergency surgery. It might be impossible to get a physician at the bedside in less than an hour. For that reason the RNs have a vast selection of standing orders and protocols to deal with nearly anything on their own, at least for a little while. In addition the SICU nurses are the trauma nurses. When there is a trauma team activation it is an SICU RN who responds to the trauma bay. The ER nurses roll is to record vital sings and run and fetch things. The SICU RN is the bedside trauma RN. They are also the code team and rapid response team.

    I called a program director for a CRNA program I was interested in to feel out her opinion on the WGU BSN (prior to applying to any BSN program). She had not heard of WGU before, so I briefly explained the pass/fail grading process and the competency based approach. And I stressed that yes, the WGU program is fully accredited. I told her that some schools interpret the "pass" as a 3.0 which worries me because that is not a competitve GPA for CRNA applicants.

    Her response to me was something along the lines of "it would be hard for you to compete against other applicants who had already demonstrated professional nursing competency through a traditional BSN program with strong GPA."
    My GPA was certainly considered. My WGU GPA was counted as a 3.0 but when added in with my ADN GPA of 4.0 I ended up with a 3.66. 3.5 was considered compedative. In addition I took a graduate level advanced pharm class and got an A to demonstrate I could do graduate corse work (with the added benifit of reducing my work load during the first semester of CRNA school).
    Schools vary a lot on what they think is important.p In my area most schools don't require the GRE and consider qualiety of experience.

    Really? So now a BSN is what demonstrates nursing competancy. I understand what she is saying, I guess, but I just find the notion a little bit .....strange. And sad.
    Seem stupid to me. The BSN doesn't tell you anything about nursing competency. I think I got dumber in the BSN program.

    She did not say ANYTHING to me about looking at other factors such as experience, GPA with non-BSN degrees, GRE scores, or strong interview performance. At least for this one director at this one CRNA program, it seems the WGU BSN would be a quick dealbreaker for the admitting committee.
    Well if that is the school you really want to attend then you have your answer. I would suggest University of Wyoming. I know several RNs who finished their BSN there for around $5K
    knnyz, Lovelymo79, medicmatt44, and 1 other like this.
  8. 0
    Awesome elaboration on topic, Thank you.
  9. 0
    Thanks for your response Indi! I do have about 1 year of experience in intense Level 1 Trauma SICU but that was from a few years ago; I have since moved and now work a variety of ICU's through float pool but it is more community hospital level. I know that's not going to cut it to make my experience very competitive, but I plan to use the 1.5 years I probably have at a minimum before starting CRNA school to build more experience at a "sicker" SICU. The only thing holding me back now is the prospect of giving up my float pay
    : (
  10. 5
    Quote from BigcatchRN
    Thanks for your response Indi! I do have about 1 year of experience in intense Level 1 Trauma SICU but that was from a few years ago; I have since moved and now work a variety of ICU's through float pool but it is more community hospital level. I know that's not going to cut it to make my experience very competitive, but I plan to use the 1.5 years I probably have at a minimum before starting CRNA school to build more experience at a "sicker" SICU. The only thing holding me back now is the prospect of giving up my float pay
    : (
    Hey man forget your float pay. I intentionaly went to work in a very low paying hospital specificaly cause I know that nurses from that unit get accepted to CRNA school at very high rates. I make about $60K less working at that hospital than I could have in a different hospital 3 hours away. However that unit got me into CRNA school and I have WAY WAY more than made up the difference. You wouldn't even believe me if I told you how much I make now.
    I am 1/3 owner of an all CRNA practice. The 3 of us have the exclusive contract to provide anesthesia services of a smaller hospital. That means we get 100% of the bill rate for services. Our schedual is PERFECT. It goes like this. For two weeks I work mon-fri 6-8 hours a day doing schedualed cases. No call, no nights, no weekends. Then for two weeks I go on call 24/7 but have no schedualed cases. On average I work 15 hours a week during those 2 weeks but I am on call all the time. Usually I am called in for night OB cases and for trauma in the ER, and emergency cases. Fun stuff. We also provide on call intensivist coverage for the small ICU. That means I take calls at night to deal with issues with the ICU patients. We also run all the vents after hours. It sounds like a lot but it's not really and it's the only thing I have to do for those 2 weeks. I take call from home. I own a farm that I am setting up for hunting and I get a lot of work done and get in a lot of fishing during those two weeks. Then for two weeks I am OFF! So I get 2 weeks off out of every 6 weeks. Our schedual rotates like that in 6 week blocks.
    All the income figures for CRNAs you see are for employees. I am the junior partner of our 3 CRNA group and I will make more than $300K in my first year. The senior partner makes over half a million. I expect to make over half a million within 5 years. We are NOT supervised by physicians in any way. We ARE the anesthesia department. We write orders on our patients and follow them so long as they are in the ICU or PACU. We are in negotiations right now to take over the pain managment service. That will add minimal work but a lot of income. We recently hired a CRNA to cover baby leave by one of the partners and we are paying him $120K for 12 weeks work.
    Your float pay is nothing in compairison. Get it done!
    knnyz, sweetkimchi, Ziglar1, and 2 others like this.
  11. 4
    Just wanted to add. The CRNAs in our group make more money than more than half of the physicians in the medical group. We make more than nearly all the family practice, internal med, and peds docs. Since their pay is published in a yearly internal report and ours is not most of them have no idea. If they did I think they would be highly ****** off.
    Maltruistic, PatMac10,RN, kylee_adns, and 1 other like this.


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