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Are there any average pre CRNA students?

Hello guys,

I have been browsing through CRNA forum for a while now and I would like to ask couple of questions. Are there any "average" people who were admitted to CRNA school. According ti what I read everyone has 4.0 gpa, 1500 GRE, Level 1 trauma expirience etc. My stats are average, although I am not going to lie I love science:D.I work in 380 bed community hospital that has 20 bed MSICU and 10 CTICU. I work in MSICU. It is almost impossible to get into level 1 around here if you do not have some sort of Icu experience period. I would assume they know why you are trying to get in:uhoh3:. I really want to be CRNA and I do not feel like jumping from one hospital to another trying to get "best" experience. What kind of recommendations am i going to get anyway?

I just started and I am getting ready to take my GRE. Planning to take couple grad level classes. Possibly CCRN certification in a year. I want to start to apply now and I am very excited that couple of schools actually told me that I can do it without having 1 year, I just have to have it by the start of the program. I am aiming at 2013-2014. I guess by that time I will have at least 2 years of experience.

Guys I am very hard working person and so far I always got what I wanted:yeah:. I feel very discouraged from reading about overqualified applicants. Please post, need some words of encouragement.

(p.s. Someone told me that at interview chemistry is the key, someone who never worked in ICU but only in NICU, did fine)


Specializes in CV/Thoracic ICU.

To make a long story short- I had a 3.4 overall gpa, 3.55 or so nursing gpa, no gre, was ccrn/acls/pals certified at application time, 3.3-3.5 science gpa, and had a year and a half experience. I was a very average applicant grade wise, but stood out with my ccrn, leadership, rec letters, and essay. You don't have to be the perfect 4.0 student, and they are not looking for that student. They are looking for the student that has shown effort, desire, and improvement. You need to get ccrn certified ASAP. It's not that difficult and many jobs will actually pay for it. Take a week to study, and take it before you apply. Sorry for the fragmented sentences (on my iPhone) Good luck.



Specializes in STICU, MICU.

Level 1 Trauma is not all that people make it out to be. I have worked it, and really feel like you learn more overall in a MICU. So don't let that stop you. Just learn your area and go from there. Three nurses from my old STICU are in anesthesia progrmas, and 2 from my current MICU.


Specializes in Critical Care.

Honestly put a focus on getting good quality ICU experience (notice I didn't say Level 1 etc) to become student possible (this may take more than 1 year in the ICU). You want to be a solid ICU nurse before you start to apply for school. You could run yourself ragged worrying about your stats and comparing yourself to everyone else. Instead try and make yourself a better ICU nurse and worker, don't skimp on the ICU experience, or certifications, it sounds like you are on the right track.


Specializes in CVICU, anesthesia.

I feel very discouraged from reading about overqualified applicants.

If you read more posts and do your research, you will see that not all applicants have the perfect 4.0, and many do not have level 1 trauma experience. If you are weak in one area, you must be strong in another to be a desirable applicant. For example, I did have a 4.0 and a good (not excellent) GRE score, but I had the bare minimum 1 year ICU experience (it was CVICU at a very prominent hospital). I do not think I would have gotten in with such little experience if my grades were mediocre. And it works the other way around, too...Most of my classmates were NOT 4.0 students, but most of them do have several years of solid ICU experience, CCRN, and good GRE scores. You can be "average" in one or more areas if you stand out and make up for it in some other aspect.

As a side note, I'm a little bothered by your statement about "overqualified applicants." Is there such a thing? There's a reason (actually several) it's hard to get in...a lot of people want to do it, and the program is hard. Schools want students to graduate and pass boards, so they will accept those who they believe are most likely to do so. If there are 30 students who apply with 4.0, 1300 GRE's and 5 years of experience, then the bar is raised and the 3.5, 2 year experience students will not get in.

Don't be discouraged, but don't try to skate by. Do everything you can (like get CCRN) to make yourself a desirable candidate, and find a program that is right for you. Different programs value different qualities in applicants. You will continue to get what you want if you are willing to work hard for it! Good luck!

Thanks a lot for the words of encouragement everyone! It is just sometimes I feel like I do not have a chance to get in:/ I will keep going forward, I have to try!


Specializes in Anesthesia.

Experience type doesn't matter so much--obviously it must be ICU. I only know one person who had 10 yrs PACU exp and like 6 months CVICU and got in. I know people with low gpa's, low gre's, average everything and got in. Whatever your experience is, excel at it. Any type of leadership experience is good. Participate in research, publish an article (it's easier than you might think), CCRN--all good things. Know what CRNA's do i.e. shadow. Be motivated, knowledgable and professional. I'm not in yet but interviewing in January. I feel confident in my resume. Just hope the admission board thinks so too!!

How do you publish an article? Thanks


Specializes in Anesthesia.

have a good topic in mind. something icu related but doesn't have to be. my topic was an evidenced based project to decrease foley catheter usage time/staff education. To my surprise, the editors loved it. It has taken about 7 months, but it is slated for a January publish. That is resume gold (not why I did it but it sure looks good to be published). Also, after you research and write your manuscript, you'll basically become an expert on that topic and a leader on your unit once you've disseminated the information. Make it a teaching session with pre and post tests. It's better to have measurable results.

Go to: http://journals.lww.com/nursing/Pages/informationforauthors.aspx. Read their guidelines. Submit a "topic query" and they'll let you know if it's what they're looking for. The editor told me they need articles badly. They were very helpful in the drafting process. A couple of back and forths of fixing and clarifying things and boom-done! I am still surprised how easy of a process it has been. Never in a million years would I have thought I'd get published. Get cracking & you'll be published by July/August--perfect timing for next years applications!

Wow, thanks a lot for great info CABGx4!!!

I just got accepted into a schoool, my under grad grades were barely a 3.2 but I took 21 credits in grad school with a 3.7 gpa. Ccrn, all cpr certifications, and 2 yrs icu experience @ a well known hospital. I got a 1020 on my gre, and iduring the interview I could barely think cos I was so sick(cough cough). I didn't think I'd get in due to my low under grad gpa, but they mentioned how they liked the fact that I showed a stronger gpa in my grad classes showing maturity!!!best of luck to you!

MCleeezy, what was your sience gpa? 21 credits???? What kind of classes? Where did you take them? Someone recommended me to take patho and pharm but that is about it. You see, I transferred to BSN program from community college where I took all my science. My science/art gpa 3.92 but when I started nursing school my gpa started from 0 so I graduated with 3.24. Ma grades were mostly A's and B's, well B-'s and one C in maternity ( I am a guy:). I guess if I combine them together I am as good as everyone else. I do not know how it works. I do not want to take so many credits without being officially accepted.

Yea I'm a guy too hahaha, I also did poor in maternity. To make up for my poor maternity grade, my clinical instructor had me do a presentation on breast feeding..... I'm not kidding, imagine a 19 year old kid teaching women how to breast feed. Anyways, my undergrad sciences were mostly As and B+. After some experience I was accpeted into a ANP program, I took all the required classes prior to clinicals (adv. Pharm, adv nursing research, adv. PAtho, adv.health assessment....). But this time around I got almost all A+. My intention was to go to crna school all along , I just had to somehow increase my overall GPA. My under grad 3.2 doesn't look good but my ccrn and 3.7 graduate gpa definitly looks good.

well what do you think I should do? Is my gpa ok? i mean i would like to take couple grad level classes but I don't feel like going into NP program. I mean I believe they look at overall gpa and one crna told me they actually want science not nursing. Which school are you going into? Did you take GRE?

I want to take online classes what do you think MC?

i got a 1020 on my gre. i really thik you should take some grad level courses. during my interview the specifically pointed that out, asking why i took those courses. i said "well i wanted to be an NP but had a change of heart... and plus my hospital was paying for 100% of those courses so WHY NOT?!!"


Specializes in ICU.

I referee to this before. Try not to worry yourself with this. Unless your going to an enormous well-known school like case western, rush, excels, etc.... My friend has a cumulative GPA of 3.07, a 760 on the gre, and 2.5 yrs experience in icy. 1 yr in peds icu, 1.5 yrs in cvicu. He starts in august 2012, because he rocked the interview. Period. The interview is key combined with where you apply. If you know your stuff, you will be fine. If you are not solid in your icu skills, they will know and so will you when you receive the rejection letter. You should be fine, as you are somewhat "over qualified".

What are good ICU skill that they are looking for?


Specializes in Intensive Care (SICU, NICU, CICU, VICU).

They want to see that you know what you are doing and why you're doing it, and that you're not just doing something because the doctor wrote the order. Getting CCRN will give you a better understanding of the different disease processes you see in the ICU. Also, what helped me (and I still do it to this day) is walking around your unit and being nosey. If someone has a patient you aren't familiar with or doing something you have never see, ask to be apart of it.


Specializes in ICU.

I couldn't agree more with real nurse. Icu skills? Hmmmmm. When someone is crashing do you give fluids or hang a pressor because that is what you were taught, or have taken the time to learn why your doing what your doing. Anyone can memorize an algorithm, they want the nurse that gets the physiology behind the intervention. Good rule of thumb, when co-workers begin to come to you for answers, then you should be ready pertaining to icu skills. Loads of nurses follow orders. They want thinkers. Hope this helps.

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