Psych NP vs Anesthesiologist Assistant (AA)

  1. Hello everyone!

    As the title of the thread implies, I am struggling to decide whether I want to pursue a Direct Entry Psych NP (Seattle University) program or an Anesthesiology Assistant (Nova Southeastern) program. I graduate this upcoming Fall semester and currently have a 4.0 GPA; I have completed all pre-medical prerequisites as well (Calculus w/ Analytical Geometry 1, Chem 1&2, Physics 1&2, Biochemistry, Organic Chemistry 1&2, Biology, etc.) but have yet to take the GRE, so I believe I have a decent shot at both programs, although I have not taken Anatomy and Physiology 1 & 2 or General Microbiology, which are pre-requisites for the NP program. I would be able to complete them before matriculation, but I would have to pack all three into my Spring semester, graduating later than intended.

    I am aware that both career fields are entirely different; I have shadowed AAs and am currently a Psychology major with 350+ logged hours in psych trauma research (have shadowed as well), so I have a decent amount of experience with both fields. I am particularly interested in pharmacology and drug interactions, which makes both fields enticing; AAs push drugs in the OR, and Psych NPs are in charge of med management, and I believe I would thoroughly enjoy both fields.

    My main apprehension about AA school is the limited scope of practice and constant political turmoil with CRNAs, but the field itself appears to be a hidden gem otherwise. The only other downside of AA school is the outrageous tuition costs (at least $40,000/ year for two years), but the high salary can offset the devastating student debt. I also worry about potential boredom working in the OR every day; do any of you ever get bored? I know that Psych NPs have high job placement and decent salaries, which is enticing as well. I have no interest in medical school; although I have a genuine passion for medicine, I do not want to spend 8+ years pursuing it.

    If anyone could provide any input, I would be incredibly appreciative. I think I would be happy with either field, but I just don't know what to do. Should I reroute my career plans from AA school and complete the required pre-requisites for NP school, or do you think that I should stick with my original plan? I appreciate your time and aid.

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    About Jessie61195

    Joined: Apr '16; Posts: 1


  3. by   roser13
    I think you should as a moderator to move your post to the advanced practice forum.