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My CRNA (hopeful) Checklisit. Anything Missing?

SRNA   (2,856 Views 11 Comments)
by jwconn1104 jwconn1104 (Member)

967 Visitors; 20 Posts

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Hello,

My name is James. I'm currently in a nursing school and I'm incredibly interested in becoming a CRNA. I haven't taken it lightly at all and have constantly been researching what it takes to get there. I'm in my second year of my ASN program and will graduate in May, 2011. Below I'm going to write out stuff I've gotten done and ask for your help with identifying anything more I can do to put myself ahead of the game. Please give me any info you may have!

* 2nd year ASN student (graduate May, 2011)

*Current GPA: 3.8 (will probably drop a little this year and pick back up during BSN)

*Currently ACLS "certified." Did this summer to put myself ahead of the game.

*Currently working a tech in a large ICU and I am pretty much guaranteed a job as an RN when I graduate.

*Will work as RN in ICU while in BSN portion of school.

*BSN portion of school will start Summer or Fall 2011 (maybe slow track=4semesters or fast=3semesters)

*Will take two general chemistry and possibly two organic chem. classes.

*CCRN? (really needed for CRNA?)

So the idea is to have all of the stuff above done by the time I graduate with my BSN in 2012/13ish and go straight from my university to a CRNA program. Any suggestions of anything I can do in addition to these things. Please let me know. I'm taking steps in that direction and will do what it takes.

Thanks again,

James

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CVmursenary has 1 years experience.

6,037 Visitors; 240 Posts

:yeah:

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16,402 Visitors; 2,438 Posts

James,

Yes, study for CCRN once you are eligible and take the exam. Also, don't forget that a vast majority of schools will require GRE (there are a few that will waive GRE based on undergrad GPA and a few that do not require it period).

Also, my one word of advice is to keep your goals in sight but learn how to be a GOOD critical care nurse. 1-2 years of experience is just barely scratching the surface. Get in there and learn everything you possibly can.

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PMFB-RN has 16 years experience and works as a Rapid Response, Trauma/CV ICU. ER/Transport.

68,881 Visitors; 5,143 Posts

CCRN will certainy make you stand out. I would aslo start studying for the GRE as soon as you graduate from nursing school. Not all CRNA schools require it but most do. Be willing to apply to schools in other areas. States like Pa with 16 CRNA schools are a good bet.

If you are not accepted on your first try then take a graduate level class or two and do very well.

Most important is the type of ICU you work in. The more autonomy RNs are given in the ICU the better for CRNA school. If you get a chance take physics and chem.

I am not a CRNA but all of my friends are in or just graduated from CRNA school and the ICU where I work sends 6-10 people a year to CRNA school.

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greenfiremajick works as a Bus. Owner, Full time Grad student and just accpet.

9,878 Visitors; 685 Posts

You forgot something really important: Take care of yourself emotionally.....Make sure you are scheduling time for destressing, or before you know it, you'll turn around and find yourself on the ledge, I mean on edge.....:jester:

Hello,

My name is James. I'm currently in a nursing school and I'm incredibly interested in becoming a CRNA. I haven't taken it lightly at all and have constantly been researching what it takes to get there. I'm in my second year of my ASN program and will graduate in May, 2011. Below I'm going to write out stuff I've gotten done and ask for your help with identifying anything more I can do to put myself ahead of the game. Please give me any info you may have!

* 2nd year ASN student (graduate May, 2011)

*Current GPA: 3.8 (will probably drop a little this year and pick back up during BSN)

*Currently ACLS "certified." Did this summer to put myself ahead of the game.

*Currently working a tech in a large ICU and I am pretty much guaranteed a job as an RN when I graduate.

*Will work as RN in ICU while in BSN portion of school.

*BSN portion of school will start Summer or Fall 2011 (maybe slow track=4semesters or fast=3semesters)

*Will take two general chemistry and possibly two organic chem. classes.

*CCRN? (really needed for CRNA?)

So the idea is to have all of the stuff above done by the time I graduate with my BSN in 2012/13ish and go straight from my university to a CRNA program. Any suggestions of anything I can do in addition to these things. Please let me know. I'm taking steps in that direction and will do what it takes.

Thanks again,

James

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PedsDrNurseTheo has 20 years experience and works as a Peds APRN.

1 Article; 6,080 Visitors; 150 Posts

IDNO, and this is just my own personal hobby horse, so don't get too worked up, but ...

The idea that people are just going to work in ICU while they complete their BSN and get their "requisite" experience that way, then apply to CRNA school bugs me.

The people who go directly from their one year of practice in the ICU to their MSN/DNP program and become critical care NPs also set off alarm bells in my head a little bit.

It has nothing to do with their intelligence - many of the people that I know who have done this are very bright, competent, and wonderful people.

But the best clinicians I know are the ones who were good ICU nurses first, then began their advanced programs - and you just don't get that in a year.

Yes, I have an eventual goal of my anesthesia MS degree. But I want to be confident that I am a darned good CICU nurse first - so that is my focus right now. And if that takes a couple more years - well, I'm only 42 - I'm still young!

If you want to be an anesthesiologist, go to med school. If you want to be a nurse anesthetist - you really should be a nurse first.

Like I said, just my hobby horse.

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2,254 Visitors; 74 Posts

I would advise working longer than a year in the ICU prior to trying CRNA. This is a program, like the NP programs, that builds on your nursing experience at the bedside. The more bedside ICU experience that you can attain will only serve you better in the long run. Also, CCRN is a great idea. Our local programs all but require it for admission.

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PMFB-RN has 16 years experience and works as a Rapid Response, Trauma/CV ICU. ER/Transport.

68,881 Visitors; 5,143 Posts

The idea that people are just going to work in ICU while they complete their BSN and get their "requisite" experience that way, then apply to CRNA school bugs me.

*** I very much like your idea of a CRNA being a good ICU nurse first. I see plenty of not very good ICU nurses from my SICU go off to CRNA school.

One year of ICU then CRNA school is exactly why the hospital I work for no longer accepts new grad BSNs into their 7 month Critical Care Nurse Residency program for the SICU (they are accepted for ER, PACU, MICU, PICU & NICU). To many where not completing their two year contract they signed to get into residency program. My class of 9 new nurses (years ago) had 7 BSNs and 2 ADNs. Of the 7 BSNs one had a baby and became a stay at home mom. 6 did not finish their contracts and went to CRNA school. Other classes had similar results.

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967 Visitors; 20 Posts

Thanks for all of the replies. Any other useful tips/pointers/direction anyone would like to give? I hope I've made it clear that I'm not passively thinking about this to make "the big bucks."

I'm choosing this career because I've seen third world medicine and know that there is a need. I spent two months in South Sudan working in a bush hospital with no "real" anesthesia. We did intrusive surgeries on 2% lidocaine and only gave diazapam if a pt. became combative. I want to meet the needs of those in and out of our health care system and will do what it takes.

I'm not ignorant to the fact that it's going to be the hardest thing I've ever done or may ever do, and I know that you have to be committed before hand. I'm taking the appropriate steps to get where I want to be. If anyone has any proactive advice that doesn't consist of, "I don't think that anyone should ever become a CRNA without practicing the exact same way I've done for the past 20 years," I'd appreciate it.

*Note: I know that there are people who have posted on this thread that are currently better nurses than I may ever hope to be, and I don't mean any disrespect. I'm just looking for the information I asked for, not all of the reasons you think I should unnecessarily prolong this journey.

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OkieICU_RN has 5 years experience and works as a ICU.

3,087 Visitors; 165 Posts

One thing I didn't see mentioned was shadowing a CRNA, also an SRNA if possible (you will get real life advice for the current journey they are experiencing). Suggest doing it now once or twice, when you don't know a whole lot. Then, start doing it a few months after your ICU orientation is over so you can build a rapport with a CRNA. You can gain valuable insight in reaching your goal, a mentor, a potential recommender.

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967 Visitors; 20 Posts

One thing I didn't see mentioned was shadowing a CRNA, also an SRNA if possible (you will get real life advice for the current journey they are experiencing). Suggest doing it now once or twice, when you don't know a whole lot. Then, start doing it a few months after your ICU orientation is over so you can build a rapport with a CRNA. You can gain valuable insight in reaching your goal, a mentor, a potential recommender.

That is something that I hadn't thought of. Thank you.

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