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Finishing up my first year of CRNA school. Ask me anything!

SRNA   (5,021 Views | 39 Replies)

SRNA1221 is a BSN and specializes in RN, BSN SRNA.

254 Profile Views; 17 Posts

You are reading page 3 of Finishing up my first year of CRNA school. Ask me anything!. If you want to start from the beginning Go to First Page.

SRNA1221 is a BSN and specializes in RN, BSN SRNA.

17 Posts; 254 Profile Views

40 minutes ago, jeebanks93 said:

I want to go ahead and apologize for the length of this post. I've got a bit of a complicated background. I initially went to school for nursing at a university straight out of high school. I wasn't very committed, did not do very well, and made some seriously bad grades. I'm not even sure what my cumulative GPA is at the moment. I completed all of my prerequisites for the nursing program and applied to that school. No surprise, I didn't get it. 

I took some time off and got married, and shortly after had a child. I knew I had to get back in school and finish something to make money for my family. So I retook some classes, and applied to a tech school that considered things other than grades on their application (it was a weighted admissions process). I took the TEAS test and did very well, which gave me a large number of points, and also got points for having experience in a healthcare related field. I was a medical scribe in an emergency room for 3.5 years and I have been an ER tech going on 2.5 years. 

I was accepted into the tech school's ADN nursing program and have about 8 months left. So far I have made 2 B's and all A's in every other class. I plan to enroll in a BSN immediately following graduation, and I am interested in CRNA school, but I honestly feel like I have no chance because of my prior grades. I just want to know, is there any hope for acceptance considering my past? Is there anything I can do to augment my application? Does scoring high on the GRE help out a lot? What are your thoughts on obtaining a MSN prior to applying to CRNA school to show your ability to do well in master's level coursework?

I obviously want to get into an ICU right away and I know they like you to have CCRN.

I feel like it is a long shot, but just want to hear some advice from someone who is where I want to be. Thanks for your time!

I want to start by admiring your determination. Great job! It takes hard work to take the steps you took after your initial bad grades. You can certainly gain acceptance into CRNA school. Several of my classmates had subpar GPAs and still gained admission. One individual had a 2.6 GPA, but did really well on the GRE and killed the interview. The most important part of your application will be your personal statement. Acknowledge your lack of commitment early on and explain the steps you've taken to turn your life around. Try to do really well on the GRE. I was in the opposite position. I had a great GPA, but a mediocre GRE score. GPA is only one component of the application! I mentioned this earlier, but a good, humble attitude will quickly overshadow a bad GPA. I took general chemistry through a local community college and advanced pharmacology through a university while working as a nurse and prior to applying to CRNA school. Try to find courses like these to take to stand out. If you really want this, don't quit. You can do it!

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SRNA1221 is a BSN and specializes in RN, BSN SRNA.

17 Posts; 254 Profile Views

18 minutes ago, TPN1986 said:

I've found the most important things programs are going to look at are first your GPA while you were in school. And second your direct nursing experience. Nursing certifications are important, but honestly they're a minimum. Everyone that applies is going to have their CCRN. Most people I met interviewing had multiple certifications and > 3.5 gpa's. GRE scores are program specific, most programs do not require them and most programs will not require you to retake classes. 

I have to disagree on this aspect. My program used a scoring system. They didn't zone in on one aspect (like GPA), but rather the application as a whole. I also did not have my CCRN when I interviewed. 

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18 minutes ago, TPN1986 said:

I've found the most important things programs are going to look at are first your GPA while you were in school. And second your direct nursing experience. Nursing certifications are important, but honestly they're a minimum. Everyone that applies is going to have their CCRN. Most people I met interviewing had multiple certifications and > 3.5 gpa's. GRE scores are program specific, most programs do not require them and most programs will not require you to retake classes. 

I don’t post often to this site and I can not send private message yet, I just want to ask( if it is not to much to ask) If do you have a list to suggest for those school? But I know you are busy  too. I’m just barely doing my research. Hopefully I can start applying next year. Thank you

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TPN1986 is a RN and specializes in SRNA CEN CCRN-CMC.

79 Posts; 1,013 Profile Views

The best experience question comes up a lot, honestly the best ICU to work in is the one with the sickest patients. Everyone that is interviewing one way or another came from an ICU/critical care background. You will want to seek out an ICU that has patients with multiple devices, vents, drips, etc. I have a long background in the ER and I can warn you right now if CRNA is your goal then I don't recommend wasting any time in the ER. ICU is where you're going to get experience with balloons, CRRT, drips, paralytics, ecmo. I have a giant spot in my heart for the ER, but it will not advance your goals.

As far as certifications go, I don't want to recommend any in particular because honestly the purpose of taking them is to advance your knowledge and practice in a specialty. I'd say if your working in trauma go for that certification, if your doing neuro get the neuro cert, if you deal with hearts get csc or cmc. It's hard to recommend specifics, just know that every step you take is towards your end goal. 

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TPN1986 is a RN and specializes in SRNA CEN CCRN-CMC.

79 Posts; 1,013 Profile Views

2 minutes ago, SRNA1221 said:

I have to disagree on this aspect. My program used a scoring system. They didn't zone in on one aspect (like GPA), but rather the application as a whole. I also did not have my CCRN when I interviewed. 

I dont mind the disagreement. I think it underscores my point though. The school is scoring applicants. If you have a weak GPA like the OP he's going to have to make up for that in other areas. 

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8 minutes ago, SRNA1221 said:

I want to start by admiring your determination. Great job! It takes hard work to take the steps you took after your initial bad grades. You can certainly gain acceptance into CRNA school. Several of my classmates had subpar GPAs and still gained admission. One individual had a 2.6 GPA, but did really well on the GRE and killed the interview. The most important part of your application will be your personal statement. Acknowledge your lack of commitment early on and explain the steps you've taken to turn your life around. Try to do really well on the GRE. I was in the opposite position. I had a great GPA, but a mediocre GRE score. GPA is only one component of the application! I mentioned this earlier, but a good, humble attitude will quickly overshadow a bad GPA. I took general chemistry through a local community college and advanced pharmacology through a university while working as a nurse and prior to applying to CRNA school. Try to find courses like these to take to stand out. If you really want this, don't quit. You can do it!

Thanks so much for your advice! I appreciate you taking the time to do this and for giving me a little hope!

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SRNA1221 is a BSN and specializes in RN, BSN SRNA.

17 Posts; 254 Profile Views

1 minute ago, TPN1986 said:

I dont mind the disagreement. I think it underscores my point though. The school is scoring applicants. If you have a weak GPA like the OP he's going to have to make up for that in other areas. 

Right. I was disagreeing with your comment "I've found the most important things programs are going to look at are first your GPA while you were in school." Hence why I said schools typically look at the "whole package" rather than one "most important" aspect. I agree though that if you're weak in one area, it can be made up by a strength in another area. Just trying to encourage applicants who are deemed "hopeless" by some posters. Best of luck on your program. 

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TPN1986 is a RN and specializes in SRNA CEN CCRN-CMC.

79 Posts; 1,013 Profile Views

1 minute ago, SRNA1221 said:

Right. I was disagreeing with your comment "I've found the most important things programs are going to look at are first your GPA while you were in school." Hence why I said schools typically look at the "whole package" rather than one "most important" aspect. I agree though that if you're weak in one area, it can be made up by a strength in another area. Just trying to encourage applicants who are deemed "hopeless" by some posters. Best of luck on your program. 

I don't think anyone should deem applicants hopeless. I pointed to the GPA as a common thing schools look at because I guess that's been my perception, but as you've stated there are a lot of ways to improve on a poor gpa, such as taking more classes or repeating classes. I'm taking a biochemistry class right now for fun and to learn a little bit more before school starts. 

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Do you have any international student in your program?

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SRNA1221 is a BSN and specializes in RN, BSN SRNA.

17 Posts; 254 Profile Views

14 hours ago, RNSmiles said:

Do you have any international student in your program?

I'm not sure if we have any international students in our cohort. I would check the AANA website regarding this topic. Sorry I couldn't be of more help!

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Nursng_life is a BSN, RN and specializes in ICU.

39 Posts; 1,376 Profile Views

Did you take anything with you to your interview? I know they already have everything by then. Just curious though...

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SRNA1221 is a BSN and specializes in RN, BSN SRNA.

17 Posts; 254 Profile Views

2 hours ago, Nursng_life said:

Did you take anything with you to your interview? I know they already have everything by then. Just curious though...

I took a notebook and pen to take notes with when they were presenting program details before the interview. Besides that, just me, myself and I. 

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