CRNA School: Max Age?

  1. Hi folks. I am considering applying to schools next year. However, I'm 43, and I am wondering if my age is a liability. I have a masters (MEd)but most of my education is 25 years old, especially the sciences, so I will be taking general chem, organic chem, and physics again...perhaps throw in an A+P, over the summer and fall semesters. Though I have had 12 years of critical care experience, it's not recent, so I plan on getting into the busiest MICU or SICU I can for the next year. Sooo... any thoughts? Am I dreaming?

    Thanks for the input! - Doug
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    About Doug Cameron

    Joined: Apr '02; Posts: 29


  3. by   jenn71
    I have no experience in this field but my humble 2 cents is that you should go for it! I am a BIG believer that age is seen more strongly as a physiological rather than chronological thing these days.
  4. by   2ndCareerRN
    You are only as old as you think you are, the limiting factor is in the mind. I am 48 and am starting FNP school in a couple of weeks.

  5. by   kmchugh
    2nd Career is right. If you want to go to CRNA school, go. I started classes when I was 40, and I know a woman who graduated at 55. She did it because she wanted to.

    Go for it.

    Kevin McHugh
  6. by   Doug Cameron
    Thanks guys. Very encouraging. Kevin, just what I needed to hear.
  7. by   jenn71
    I am glad to hear that age did not hold you back from getting in. I will be around 35 when I start CRNA school(Hopefully!).

    I am hoping that I can apply with only a year or so of ICU experience......I am curious, kmchugh, how long did you work ICU before you got into school?
  8. by   kmchugh
    I had about two and a half years when I applied. I know any number of guys and girls who have applied with one year. In fact, one guy I know applied and interviewed with about six months experience. He told them in the interview he would finish out the year requirement waiting for classes to start. He was accepted. He's now a VERY good CRNA. Most programs only require one year of experience in an ICU to get in. That's enough time to familiarize you with vasoactive gtts and the like, and to get used to caring for very sick patients. Anesthesia is a whole different world.

    Kevin McHugh
  9. by   WntrMute2
    Just to let you know, I'm 44 and I statred CRNA school last Sept. Some things are a bit harder, rapid memorization for instance ( a pretty significant drawback) but other things are better, experience, frustration tolerance, focus. Things aren't so "life or death" as every hurdle seems to the younger crowd. Go for it, you've nothing to lose. BTW, 5 years in Trauma ICU.
  10. by   Doug Cameron
    Thanks, Dave, and everybody else. I am very encouraged. I am at a career crossroads, but with some options. My kids are (almost) all in college, and though tuition has been expensive, they are all helping to foot the bill - very manageable. I was just laid off from my current job, with several months severance. I figure I've got one major career change left in me, so am getting a lot of advice and counseling. I am not looking for a "job".... I am looking for a career path. One option was to get a PhD in clinical psychology. After talking to a couple of guys I know in the was a little eye-opening. Then I remembered.... a couple of years after I finished nursing school, I "pre"interviewed at local medical center's CRNA school. I was intrigued, but my life was not ready to allow me to go to school full time at that point - family comes first. I loved critical care, and I was good at it, but I started to burn out after 11 years or so... too many nights working and covering up for unsafe co-workers, or having to walk the admitting MD through his orders (no intensivists in those days.) I left and ran my own business for 5 years or so, and then took a senior administrative position with a non-profit (7years). Nursing seemed so far behind me..... I loved the cameraderie with good team-mates, though, and I surely did like helping people. Also, I enjoyed the fact that I wasn't a "suit"....I thought I was more interesting than that (!)(the hubris of youth...I later wore a suit with great regularity! ...). I worked in some great hospitals with some great people, and have some fond memories. So... I think I am going to pursue this; I plan on talking to a few programs to bounce my (potential) application and situation off of them to see what they think I need to work on the most. A CRNA career appeals to many things in me... not the least of which is a pretty good rate of pay, and the opportunity to work just about anywhere, doing a similar job.
    Thanks again, folks, for all your encouragement. I appreciate it!

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