• Specializes in ICU, Tele. Has 1 years experience.

I want to start CRNA school in about 1.5 yrs. I have a few Q's.

I am currently working in a Telemetry unit. I've been there 4 mo... I can transfer to either ER or ICU in 2 more months. I also want to do travel nursing for a year. I know CRNA programs require 1 yr ICU experience. Also, I know that to travel I should have 1 yr experience in a given specialty. Basically, I want to travel as an ICU or ER nurse for a year then start CRNA school. How can I do this in the quickest manner?

First, can Tele be considered ICU (i.e. can I get into CRNA school with Tele experience)?

Second, if not, can I transfer to ER in 2 mo, work another 6 mo in the ER, then travel as an ER nurse?

Finally, if not, can I travel as a Tele nurse, and work my way into ER while on the road?

I just don't want to have to spend another year and a half here to get the 1 year ER experience before I travel for a year.

Thanks for the tips everyone. :D


150 Posts

Specializes in NICU, CVICU. Has 4 years experience.

If your ultimate goal is to get into a CRNA program, then you are probably wasting your time trying to transfer to ER. Most programs (for whatever reason) do not accept ER experience. You will need ICU experience.

And a friend of mine was passed over for CRNA school because she had 4 years of travel ICU experience...the school wanted her to have stable experience at one hospital for a year. I'm not sure if travelling is just a personal desire, but it won't help your chances for acceptance.

My suggestion: transfer as soon as possible into a high acuity ICU. Stay there until you apply for CRNA school (at least 1 year, preferably 2 years). Anything else probably hurts your chances rather than helps them.


15 Posts

Specializes in ICU, Tele. Has 1 years experience.

Thanks for the reply. I was just hoping to kill 2 birds with 1 stone... get my ICU experience for CRNA program, and get a nice little break from school and see the nation a bit.


102 Posts

AGree with above!!!


135 Posts

Yeah, if you want to go to CRNA school, you need the ICU. Somes schools will take ER experience (you have to look for which ones do), but most don't. And even the ones that do I'm not sure it's 'preferred'.

Telemetry won't count because --at least at my hospital and most others, I think-- you won't deal with things like CVP, Art. line monitoring, ventilators, sedation, pressors and other vasoactive drips. If pt's require these the get TRANSFERRED TO the ICU :) ER does see this stuff; they deal with the pt's on these treatments but only until they get a room and get transferred to. . . the ICU. Soooo, hint hint, nudge nudge, get to the ICU!

I have been accepted to CRNA school. I had about 17months ICU experience at time of interview, and will have a just under 2 yrs by the time school starts. How are your grades? what kind of sciences have you taken? GRE score? any certifications? Let me know if you have any questions. I'd be happy to try my best to offer answers. Mind you, I've gotten in, but the REALLY difficult part will be when classes start. But I'm looking forward to the challenge :D (wish me luck!!)


15 Posts

Specializes in ICU, Tele. Has 1 years experience.

Hey... Brain Hurts... (nice name) thanks for the comments and CONGRATS ON GETTING ACCEPTED!!! :yeah:

I graduated from a University with my BSN at about 3.8 cum GPA, did all the premed sciences, taught physiology for 3 years, and I'm finishing my MS in physiology now (writing my thesis) which was a lot of upper level sciences, particularly physiology. I think my cum GPA there will be on the 3.8/3.9 border. I've been in college for 10 years (did a separate AD) and I'm needing a little break. But I don't want to take too long. I emailed my manager today asking for recommendations for whom (CRNA) I can begin to shadow in this area. I took the GRE and got something in the upper 900's but don't remember my exact score. I plan to take that again anyhow. I worked for 6 mo in the MICU and had to quit because that was the first semester of my MS coursework and research and I was pulling 13 hour days 7 days a week... I only had about 6 days off in 6 months. So that's where I'm sitting now. I just moved to a city near where I grew up and I don't want to officially move again. I do however want to see the nation; I was hoping to see a handful of places while doing travel nursing and from that choose a nifty destination for my CRNA studies.

About my hospital- the rule is I can't transfer departments until I've been there and in good-standing for 6 mo. I can always just search for a new job at another hospital, or perhaps talk to my boss and see if they will help me begin transferring now. Ideas? Perhaps I can begin part-time in the MICU and continue full-time in Tele until that 6 mo mark, then swap... full-time in MICU and part-time in Tele.

Thanks for the comments in advance. I'm so glad I found this site!!


135 Posts

Wow! MS in phys. COOOL! That has got to look good in an interview.

I have a previous 'pre-med'-like BS, which I think maybe helped in the interview? my grades weren't spectacular from that (3.2, a few Cs I had to explain) but hey it's degree :) BSN around 3.8, depending on what combination of classes you use to calculate it. I had ACLS only. In retrospect I should have tried harder for PALS, strangely enouhg, my hospital with a PICU and all doesn't have PALS classes!!! And I'm registered for CCRN but I haven't yet taken it. Most everybody I talked to had it though. I don't know what number of people who did/didn't have it did/didn't get in. I got in without it but why risk it?

The first school I interviewed at did not offer me admission, but the second school did, and it was really my first choice anyway. They definitely look at the whole package, although I'm not sure what part of 'my' package made them decide to take me since I didn't have all the certifications/many yrs of experience. Must have said something right in the interview. Beats me, I'm just happy to be accepted.

I'm not sure how schools look at traveling ICU experience. I guess on the one hand if it's at high acuity hospitals and units, it doesn't matter. But maybe they want to know you've had a steady job at one location for a year or so? I really don't know. I'd call and ask the schools you are interested in if it matters to them. You can always travel as a CRNA, which might be more fun anyway. Just something to keep in mind.

Any places you have your eye on for CRNA school? What part of the country are you in or do you think you want to study in? I'm in Texas. If you have questions about UTHSC Houston or Baylor let me know; those are the schools I applied to. You can ask on the boards or private message me, which ever you like. :typing:


15 Posts

Specializes in ICU, Tele. Has 1 years experience.

I'm interested in schools on the east coast, preferably not cold places though (like not NY). I'd also be interested in TX... I hear Baylor is a cool school. I would consider something on the west coast but it wouldn't be my first choice. I actually don't really know anything about CRNA schools. I'm going to head to the library today and try to pick up a couple books. I know there are guides to choosing medical schools but I'm not in tune with CRNA schools... I'm guessing there are similar rankings, info and guides for CRNA schools. It seems there are a lot more CRNA schools than medical schools. My hospital has one, but like I said, I'd like to get out of here for a while (I live in the Midwest and have my whole life).

Also, I guess rankings aren't really a consideration for CRNA schools like they are with medical schools.

And what are the employment options with CNRA? Obviously work for a hospital or in a group in the OR, pain clinic, L&D. Teaching positions? Other obscure possibilities?

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