(CRNA Responses Needed) *Ambitious Student fascinated with the Profession*

  1. Hello everyone,
    I am presently a High School Student on the road to becoming a Nurse. If you could spare a bit of your valuable expertise and knowledge to answer a few of my questions, it would be appreciated! First off, I would like to say that coming from a family of Doctors and Nurses, the medical field has always intrigued my mind. Presently, my mother is the Head Nurse of a Pediatric Ward; my uncle a Cardiologist at a teaching hospital, and I have another relative that is a CRNA at a (Level 1) trauma center. Out of all these medical professionals, I aspire to become a CRNA! It is my belief that Nurses have the ability to provide the strongest care throughout a hospital! Last summer, my father was diagnosed with Crohn's disease! Throughout the duraton of his hospital stay, I had the opportunity to view a CRNA administer anesthetics before and after his surgery. I believed it to be the most remarkable task in the hospital. The idea that an individual can anesthetize another human being while maintaining the role as a Nurse amazed me! I have always known I wanted to be a Nurse, but now I know what speciality I wish to work in!

    Now that all of you have a little background on why I wish to become a (CRNA), I have a few questions for you:


    -Should I shadow the CRNA in my family? Is that possible, or are they too busy throughout their daily schedule?

    -I have a 4.0 GPA and a 33 on my ACT...Do you think It would be acceptable if I took the ADN route as opposed to the BSN first? I know that you must have a BSN to enter the CRNA program, but I honestly want to begin Nursing School Now! Have any of you CRNA'S done the ADN route first?

    -If my grades are good enough out of Nursing School...Can I be oriented into the ICU as a new graduate?

    -Are there any interesting books on Anesthesia I should read up on? Is there anything I should be doing to prepare while Im still young?

    -Any comments or suggestions would be highly regarded!

    Thank you all for your time and consideration!
    Sincerely, Dustin Leichty
    •  
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    About DLeichty

    Joined: Apr '05; Posts: 2

    10 Comments

  3. by   ERNurse752
    I'm not a CRNA/SRNA, but a couple things I can tell you from reading threads before...

    To get into CRNA school, you must have a BS in something. So it would probably be better/faster for you to go ahead and get your BSN, instead of getting your ASN and having to get a BS in something else.

    Yes, you can orient into the ICU as a new grad RN. Make sure they have a good preceptorship program for new grads...at least 12 weeks of quality orientation. It's also helpful to work a student nurse in ICU.

    You can also do a search on this board, or go to the CRNA board on here, and you can find more answers to your questions.

    Good luck!
  4. by   Laughing Gas
    You seem very articulate and your interest is peaked in the right direction. You are correct, this is the most amazing job you can do.

    Get your BSN first. I got my AD first and ended up doing plenty of redundant work.

    Get into an ICU as quickly as possible, especially surgical intensive care.

    Read, read, read. You have the advantage of knowing your career path long before others do. If you started reading some ICU books and even some basic anesthesia stuff just to get familiar with terminology and history...you would be light years ahead of where the majority of people are at. Get all A's, it's geting tougher to get in each year. Don't leave anything to chance.

    Good luck
  5. by   TraumaNurse
    Dustin,

    I applaud your ambition and only wish I was that focused in HS!:chuckle

    I think shadowing your relative who is a CRNA is a great idea. You may also want to shadow another CRNA from your relative's group to get exposure to different anesthetists techniques. Most CRNAs would be happy to have someone shadow them that is interested in the profession. Go for it.

    Your grades are excellent. Keep it up! As far as ADN vs BSN, I think you should do whatever suits your needs. Getting the BSN done is great so you do not have to go back to school when you get a job. You can then take some extra science classes like Organic Chem and Physics that you will not get in the BSN program while you are getting the required experience.
    On the other side, if you get an ADN, you can be working in an ICU in 2+ years, making decent money and getting experience. During that time you will have to do a RN-BSN program and maybe even some extra science courses.
    I think in the end, it really doesn't matter because either way, you will need a BS or BSN (BSN gives you more options) and at least 1 year of critical care experience.
    You should not have any problem getting into ICU as a new grad if you live near hospitals with good orientation programs. I suggest working as a Nurse extern while in school so you can get in the door. Most ICUs will hire the students who do externships in the unit and who prove to be hard workers.
    My suggestions:
    1. Keep working hard in school and keep up your grades.
    2. Finish your BSN (by whichever route suites you best).
    3. Find a job in an ICU while in school.
    4. Take extra science courses.
    5. MOST IMPORTANT... Have fun!!! You are young, so enjoy it. Work hard in school, at work, and at having fun! Find a good balance between fun/partying and school/work. If you live life to get the most out of it, you will not have any regrets. These skills of finding balance in your life will help you succeed in undergrad, CRNA school, and in life. Good luck.
  6. by   DLeichty
    Quote from TraumaNurse
    Dustin,

    I applaud your ambition and only wish I was that focused in HS!:chuckle

    I think shadowing your relative who is a CRNA is a great idea. You may also want to shadow another CRNA from your relative's group to get exposure to different anesthetists techniques. Most CRNAs would be happy to have someone shadow them that is interested in the profession. Go for it.

    Your grades are excellent. Keep it up! As far as ADN vs BSN, I think you should do whatever suits your needs. Getting the BSN done is great so you do not have to go back to school when you get a job. You can then take some extra science classes like Organic Chem and Physics that you will not get in the BSN program while you are getting the required experience.
    On the other side, if you get an ADN, you can be working in an ICU in 2+ years, making decent money and getting experience. During that time you will have to do a RN-BSN program and maybe even some extra science courses.
    I think in the end, it really doesn't matter because either way, you will need a BS or BSN (BSN gives you more options) and at least 1 year of critical care experience.
    You should not have any problem getting into ICU as a new grad if you live near hospitals with good orientation programs. I suggest working as a Nurse extern while in school so you can get in the door. Most ICUs will hire the students who do externships in the unit and who prove to be hard workers.
    My suggestions:
    1. Keep working hard in school and keep up your grades.
    2. Finish your BSN (by whichever route suites you best).
    3. Find a job in an ICU while in school.
    4. Take extra science courses.
    5. MOST IMPORTANT... Have fun!!! You are young, so enjoy it. Work hard in school, at work, and at having fun! Find a good balance between fun/partying and school/work. If you live life to get the most out of it, you will not have any regrets. These skills of finding balance in your life will help you succeed in undergrad, CRNA school, and in life. Good luck.


    Thank you TraumaNurse...That was a wonderful post!
  7. by   versatile_kat
    Dustin - I have nothing new to add from the other posts, but just wanted to wish you luck! It's great that you are so goal-oriented at such a young age. I'm in an anesthesia program now and wish I would have had as much of a clue as you seem to when I was in HS!
  8. by   UCDSICURN
    Ditto what eveyone else has said and I must say I am really impressed with your focus. The only thing I would like to add, if I may, is regarding the ADN vs. BSN route. One thing to keep in mind is that every single CRNA program in existance accepts a BSN. Not all CRNA programs will accept a bachelor's in another degree, there are some though. That being said, you will need to consider the time frame of the different routes regarding nursing degrees.

    An ADN in California, at least the schools in my area, will take you nearly four years, and that's not including navigating a waiting list or lottery or whatever the selection process may be for that particular program. BSN programs on the other hand will take about the same amount of time, 4-5 years. So, it's entirely up to you. Do you get your ADN, start work and get your BSN at the same time or do you just knock it all out at once and focus on nursing and transitioning to an intensive care environment after graduation? It's really up to you and what makes most sense.

    Hope this doesn't cloud the waters any more for you.
  9. by   crazylilkelly
    Quote from Laughing Gas
    You seem very articulate and your interest is peaked in the right direction. You are correct, this is the most amazing job you can do.

    Get your BSN first. I got my AD first and ended up doing plenty of redundant work.

    Get into an ICU as quickly as possible, especially surgical intensive care.

    Read, read, read. You have the advantage of knowing your career path long before others do. If you started reading some ICU books and even some basic anesthesia stuff just to get familiar with terminology and history...you would be light years ahead of where the majority of people are at. Get all A's, it's geting tougher to get in each year. Don't leave anything to chance.

    Good luck
    Hi,
    I was wondering if you could recommend some good ICU/anesthesia books? Thanks & God bless, CLK
  10. by   BigDave
    From a non-technical standpoint, "Watchful Care" (a history of nurse anesthetists) is a good read.

    For the technical aspects, I thought "Basics of Anesthesia" was a well written overview. I'm not sure how easy of a read it would be for you though.

    If you had a medical library of a teaching hospital nearby, it might be worth your while to scan some texts before putting out $$ for them.

    Here is the links to the books:
    http://www.aana.com/bookstore/books.asp

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...631570-2071124

    Good luck! I wasted too many years goofing off. I wish I had my head out of my a** when I was your age. I wish my 16 and 20 year olds did as well...
  11. by   crazylilkelly
    Quote from BigDave
    From a non-technical standpoint, "Watchful Care" (a history of nurse anesthetists) is a good read.

    For the technical aspects, I thought "Basics of Anesthesia" was a well written overview. I'm not sure how easy of a read it would be for you though.

    If you had a medical library of a teaching hospital nearby, it might be worth your while to scan some texts before putting out $$ for them.

    Here is the links to the books:
    http://www.aana.com/bookstore/books.asp

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/AS...631570-2071124

    Good luck! I wasted too many years goofing off. I wish I had my head out of my a** when I was your age. I wish my 16 and 20 year olds did as well...
    Thanks bunches. Hey, at least you got your head out of your butt eventually-----many people never get that far no matter how much time or resources you give them. Take care & God bless, CLK
  12. by   BigDave
    Thanks!
    It's been a long road...

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