First couple months

Students SRNA

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I was just wondering if I could get some feedback regarding the first couple months of CRNA school. I know that each school is different in regards to when classes are held and when clinicals start. I was more or less just looking to get a picture of the first couple months and stress levels and feelings upon starting school. Thanks

Specializes in Anesthesia.

Hi,

I am a senior in the Barry University CRNA program. Our first semeseter was mostly didactic, I believe 16 or 18 credit hours with some "observational" clinical rotations.

However, you will get varied answers because some programs are front loaded while others are a mix. Barry is a mix, we have didactic portions mixed with clinical until the day we graduate. Our didactic load does reduce as you progress through the program. I have 2 semesters left and each semester is now only 3 credits, one class; senior seminar (2 credits) and clinical (1 credit).

Hope this helps some

2814

15 Posts

First you have to realize it is not going to be fun. Everyone will say "it's the hardest thing you will ever do", well they are right. I tried to understand this before starting but until you have gone through it, there is no way to comprehend the magnitude of the undertaking. If you ask any CRNA if they thought school was "fun" they will only say "its do-able", that means its hard as heck and if you work to your maximum effort you will "do-it".

The first couple months in a front loaded program are the worst as far as stress. No one wants to fail, but some will not make it, everyone knows this but do not want to think it can be them. The majority of those that fail will weed out the first couple tests, this is hard emotionally for everyone. You will do bad on the first couple tests because you have never been tested to this level, have not studied this many hours on end, and you need to learn the teachers style and the type of questions they ask. Accept this and work through it, do not get bogged down with stress and worry. By the third test you will have your groove down and making good grades and will bring up the first two.

Added to this is the stress of being away from family and friends. It can be overpowering and you will want to just give up at times. Again, you just have to work through it, it gets better. For those that bring their families it is hard because they want to spend time with them but they have no time to give, it is all study time. This is very hard to tell children, but you have to find a balance and set your mind to achieve the goal of passing.

The best advice I can give is to "start minute one, with full effort and do not relax". From day one start studying and do not let up, if you give more effort than all those around you it will be evident on the first couple tests. I cannot tell you how stressful a program can be if you have a failing grade, you can bring it up, but it is an emotional roller coaster. If you start in august you will have a holiday before the first test, most take the time to relax and see their families, then when they return the first round of tests are around the corner and they realize how far behind they are. Study like a maniac for the first one, then you will know how to adjust your style to the teachers. If you ever catch yourself saying "that's too in-depth, they will not ask that" well stop and start over, they will ask it, and it will be more in depth than you think.

Its hard, but by Christmas you will be so proud of yourself. You cannot imagine how much you will learn by then. Just keep studying and do not let up.

beardedhalo

16 Posts

Specializes in Anesthesia.

At MTSA you jump in head first with an integrated program. Classes and clinical rotations start from the beginning. Lace your shoes tight and hold on.

olderthandirt2

503 Posts

Specializes in ICU- adults, Flight RN peds/neo.

Front loaded program. Almost 2months into it.......this last week has been a real eye-opener. I think most of us were pretty confident up until now, with 10% (6 of 60 test completed), but then we were hit with 3 intense courses at once....A&P has really kicked-in, plus the addition of Signal transduction (PharmD) and Biochemistry Amino Acids.

My head just spins in circles.

I have been pretty confident until 3 days ago, when I caught myself saying S##$$@, I might not be able to do this. I am a civilain flight RN with 2 Masters.....didn't expect to think this......but. I am not stopping. I might just have to let go of my grip on scoring the highest.....(which I am not anyway....but striving too :) ).

good luck

c.

wake9909

22 Posts

I start in 3 weeks and I'm scared to death!! Reading these posts has certainly not helped alleviate my anxiety either. Darn.

scorpiontail

11 Posts

Specializes in MICU, NSICU.

I also start the CRNA program in about 2 weeks. I am optimistically horrified. I really appreciate the insight that you have provided. Believe it or not your advice is on point. 95% of the SRNA's I have spoken to say the same exact phrase "It's do able." That's all they say. "Just focus and study hard" they also add. My program is front loaded and I have already completed 12 credits prior to my start date. This I feel pretty good about. Was there any study pattern that worked in particular for you?

olderthandirt2

503 Posts

Specializes in ICU- adults, Flight RN peds/neo.
Do you know what you call a SRNA that completes the anesthesia program with straight A's and one with straight B's?....

A "CRNA"! ;)

So, please let go of your "grip of scoring the highest". It will NOT happen. You will NOT make straight A's through Anesthesia school (seriously doubt it).

Here is my motto, starting my 2nd year:

"Pass Class to Pass Gas".

'Nuff said. :)

thanks, I've heard that.

3rd Masters......I'm not changing my stripes now.....tooo old and stubborn. I also dont "need" to run in 102 degree heat, here in San Antonio, but I do that too.

......I keep your advice in mind....while I bust my a$$#!

Remember, we all have a different driving force. :)

c.

hypnos

23 Posts

Specializes in Neuro & Trauma ICU.

Starting this Friday. My sis is a college professor & she said that the first 10 days of her program are focused on "weeding out the weak." They hit hard & heavy to see who is really prepared for the stress & commitment so that they know early on. She said it's not based in cruelty, but rather that's pretty much the time limit to get even a partial refund of tuition. They want people who realize it's too much to be able to get money back if they drop.

olderthandirt2

503 Posts

Specializes in ICU- adults, Flight RN peds/neo.

Hummm interesting......definitely not so with USAGPAN (ARMY Crna program), since the military is shelling out $500,000 for each student's education (plus moves, plus wages).......I guess that is why they REALLY cater to our success.

c.

hypnos

23 Posts

Specializes in Neuro & Trauma ICU.
Hummm interesting......definitely not so with USAGPAN (ARMY Crna program), since the military is shelling out $500,000 for each student's education (plus moves, plus wages).......I guess that is why they REALLY cater to our success.

c.

You lucky dog. Yes, I was once a army nurse & know full well that they will go to any length to retain their people. Some of my most memorable years were spent with the army (& I mean that in a very good way).

MoLee228

118 Posts

Specializes in CVICU, anesthesia.
Hummm interesting......definitely not so with USAGPAN (ARMY Crna program), since the military is shelling out $500,000 for each student's education (plus moves, plus wages).......I guess that is why they REALLY cater to our success.

c.

Why does it cost the military half a million for each CRNA? That's WAY more than it costs for civilian CRNAs to educate themselves...why does it cost them so much more? Perhaps they should cut back a little to save some tax dollars...MD's get educated for far less...

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