Informal survey for those who have applied to CRNA school

Specialties CRNA


In a recent post someone mentioned that it is not unusual to spend 5 years in an ICU prior to being accepted into a program.

Here is my question - How many years of ICU nursing experience did each of you have when you were accepted to a program? Also - are there people who were denied acceptance for the sole reason of lack of ICU experience who were then accepted at the same school after a year or more experience?

I realize that people may have 3-5 or more years when being accepted to CRNA school, but was this because they didn't apply until they had that much experience? It seems to me I have seen many posts from those who applied after one or two years... Thanks in advance for any replies.


612 Posts

9 years for me before being accepted. It will be closing in on 10 years by the time I get started.

I work with someone who was told that she did not get in because of her lack of experience. We are both interviewing for that same program in 2 weeks.


50 Posts

How many years experience did you have the first time you applied? Were there other reasons you waited 9 years?

I think this potentially a very interesting thread.

Could you also tell us when you first applied, how much effort you put in getting accepted during those year(s) you were not accepted, and why you think you not accepted during the first couple of years.


20 Posts

I had two years cvicu experience at a large teaching facility when I got accepted to a CRNA program. I know a bunch of people who got in after 2-3 years and a few people who got in after one year.


612 Posts

This is my first year applying. It took that long to apply for multiple reasons:

1) I had a diploma and needed to go back for my BSN. It took a few years before I was financially or mentally ready for that.

2) I tried other things like flight nursing and enjoyed my nursing career.

3) I was waiting for the "right" time for my kids. I know there is no true "right" time, but I did not want to miss out on any of the baby years. They are still young (2 and 4) and I am nervous about my time away from them...but as I said, there is no perfect time.

As far as effort, I did not really put much effort into the application process. They had my resume, I did mediocre on the GRE, my GPA from years past was horrible but excellent in recent years and in BSN. I had good references and I usually interview well. I already had plenty of certs, ccrn, etc. I spent plenty of time in the OR with CRNAs for my intubation skills as a flight nurse. So, I guess the answer is, my career has prepared me for the application process, instead of having to get all that stuff just to apply.

There are some people who have it all and will get in anywhere...I'm not one of them. Like most people, I had strengths and weaknesses in my application, I'm just lucky the admissions people focused on my strengths!


67 Posts

I had 9 months working SICU in a large teaching hospital when I was accepted. I was very determined to get in the first time. I had all of the recommended certifications. Took graduate level chemistry, physiology, anatomy & pharmacology classes to prove to the admissions board how serious I was. It worked for me.


53 Posts


I believe it may be my post on "should I be a CRNA or MDA thread" that you're referencing. My class at Newman had an average of around 5 five years of nursing experience. The extremes were 1 and 17 years. Obviously mine is not a scientific study, but I think it basically agrees with the data found on the AANA website.

As to the reason , I don't know....I don't think any of my class had been applying yearly.



153 Posts

Hi all! I worked for 2 years in the surgical/trauma ICU at a very large and well respected hospital. I got into University of Pittsburgh, University of Buffalo, and Virginia Commonwealth University which I am currently attending. I was, however, denied by University of Scranton for no other reason than lack of experience. In fact, the program director said I looked better on paper than most of the other people she accepted. It just proves the notion that different programs have different priorities when selecting the applicants they accept.

Three more exams and a week and a half to go...



422 Posts

When I interviewed I had 11 months experience. I will have two plus years when school actually starts. I worked hard to get as many certifications as I could and took a lot of continueing ed classes at a local CC.

I have a friend who was just accepted to school and she had 8 months ICU experience but will have 20 months when school starts. She hasn't taken anything extra since nursing school but had a very high GPA.


108 Posts

16 months ICU in a large regional center

2 yrs as a scrub tech/LPN

Effort: lots, I knew my app was short on the "years" of experiance, so I studied hard for the GRE and spent alot of time on the Resume and "goal statements"

I got interviewed/accepted at 3 programs, denied at 1

good luck


62 Posts

2 years total as RN with one year in smaller 10 bed ICU unit with 6 months of that time as charge. no ccrn, strong science background, 3.3 nursing gpa, 3.4 total. undergrad at the univ. of FL...go gators. I interviewed at two places my first choice Barry U. --got in, had a great interview. 2nd choice U of S. carolina--waiting list and then denied--my interview wasn't good, very nervous--interviewers seemed stuffy and uninterested, their loss. GRE ok, nothing spectacular.

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