CRNA army or no?

  1. I am currently enrolled in CRNA school and the other day the army came to speak to our class. I haven't had any luck on the army forum so i thought i would post here as well.

    SO the Army came and spoke to my class the other day and offered up a very appetizing deal that was all glitter and glitz. This is what they said:

    STRAP program
    Reservist option so the requirement would be one weekend a month and 2 weeks a year.
    Deployment would be no greater than 90 days: likelihood of being deployed more than once slim: likelihood of oversees deployment also minimal
    2,000 dollars a month while in school
    Up to 50,000 tuition reimbursement after program completion
    28 day training: specialized in our field: training will not be overly physically demanding claimed to be nothing like boot camp

    I want to know what other CRNA or RN experiences have been with this type of situation.
    How hard is it to get the reimbursement? I here people have trouble with their GI bills all the time.
    How often have you been deployed? If so for how long and where? If you volunteer to deploy do get offered a choice as to where you go? For instance if i volunteer for deployment will i be offered a choice between say Iran and Kentucky (or something like that).
    How soon after graduation were you deployed?
    How was your training on admission? What does it entail?
    Would it be better to apply to another reserve branch besides the army like the air force or navy?
    When you do your one weekend a month two weeks a year where do you go during this time? What does the training include?

    Any information you guys have would be greatly appreciated and any resources you have found that would help me to make a decision would be wonderful.

    Thank you all for your time.
  2. Visit bmp1260 profile page

    About bmp1260

    Joined: Nov '11; Posts: 4


  3. by   JayVArn
    Read the fine print in everything. What the recruiter "tells you" and what "actually happens" can be two vastly different things. Remember, you are subject to what the army wants. Check out the military forum also, you can probably find good information about these things.
  4. by   EmergencyNrse
    I mean c'mon... You really buy into the hype?

    The MINIMUM requirement will be the initial training, the annual training and the 1 weekend a month. You'll be commissioned and be required to buy all officer uniforms, dress blues and participate in all that officer stuff.

    Then there is the threat of deployment. Depending on your specific unit you could be in theater for a LONG time. Hmmmm, let's see. CRNA is used where? Surgery. Where is surgery done? Why in a forward area surgical team or MASH.

    LOL, keep believing that you "really won't deploy" because they don't DO surgery in Iraq or Afghanistan right?

    The money is real. The tuition reimbursement is real. It does NOT come free... Weigh your decision carefully. Get EVERYTHING in writing.
    You WILL earn it. Good Luck!

    Been there, Done that. Got the T-shirt...
  5. by   muesli
    In addition to the other advice given you, I would look at other branches and what they offer. I've heard they're better as far as frequency of deployments and benefits but I can't speak from experience. I would agree with the previous poster that deployments are going to happen. And even in the navy it may not be on a ship - apparently there are navy-staffed hospitals in Afghanistan.
  6. by   79Tango
    *AS LITTLE AS, 1 weekend a month, 2 weeks a year*
  7. by   kalevra
    There's a clause in you contract that states in short that modifications to your initial contract based on needs of the ARMY. I remember back in 2005 people had 3 months on their contract before they could return to civilian life. Then the orders came down to redeploy to Iraq. Well their contract got forcibly extended for another 13 months its called "stop loss". They were stuck out in Iraq when they should have been in the U.S. On top of that some of those "stop loss" soldiers died out there. All because of the "needs of the ARMY" clause. Yes, what the ARMY did was also perfectly legal since you signed on the dotted line.

    I am pretty sure with the money you make with CRNA, paying back your student loans will not be such an issue.
  8. by   bmp1260
    Thank you for the comments, I have no delusion that i will not be deployed. But my question was posed to discover if there is anyone who has served as a CRNA in the military. What there deployment was like where they have gone. I know one of my teachers volunteered to go to Afghanistan she has also been to Germany. On the military forums I was reading about a CRNA who volunteered for deployment and said he had a choice as to where to go and he went to Texas. So how true is this notion of being able to have a say in where you go? How often is one likely to be deployed in 3 years? What are the experiences here? This is why i am researching to make my decision to try and discover people who have been in this position and what their experiences are and decide if it is the best choice for me and my family. Thank you!
  9. by   wtbcrna
    I am an AF CRNA, but from what I know of the Army reservist CRNAs what the recruiter told you is sounds about right. Most the Army CRNA reservists I know actually didn't deploy they backfilled at civilian state side bases or went to Landstuhl in Germany. The ones that do deploy usually are the ones that volunteer. Things can change at any time, but this seems to be the trend right now. Deployment times are getting shorter overall for the Army, and with the withdrawal from Iraq I don't foresee any big changes to the policy in the near future.
  10. by   bmp1260
    Thank you for the information this is similar to what I have read recently, from what i read it was different in in the early to mid 2000s.

    How do you like the air force? Do they have a reservist unit? Is their offer similar to the army?
  11. by   wtbcrna
    Quote from bmp1260
    Thank you for the information this is similar to what I have read recently, from what i read it was different in in the early to mid 2000s.

    How do you like the air force? Do they have a reservist unit? Is their offer similar to the army?
    Funny thing is I don't think I have worked with AF reserve CRNA.... I think the Army has a better deal with deployments, but I think every thing else (loan repayments etc.) are exactly the same.