Need input on all three Southwestern PA programs


There was a good amt of response to the question re: the Excela Health program. What about the Allegheny Valley Hospital/La Roche program? In fact, could you compare the three programs and grads, including Pitt, Excela, Allegheny Valley please. I am going to apply to all three. I already have an MSN from Pitt (cardiovascular CNS). I hear that Pitt has awesome clinicals, and a great simulation lab. But it is also 28 months. I think I like the idea of a 24 month program better, since I don't need any of the non-anesthesa Advanced Practice Nursing courses. Been there/done that. Already did thesis, etc.

And is it true that if you already have an MSN, that you don't need to retake the GRE, no matter how long ago one completed the MSN program (1986 for me)? I have a grad school GPA of 3.98. 20plus years of CT ICU experience. Have been a CV CNS, CT ICU unit educator, transplant coordinator.

Thanks so much for the input. It's hard to get good info on the real differences of the programs and the abilities of the grads.

Debbie in Pittsburgh

Specializes in Neuro/Med-Surg/Oncology.

If you really like everything Pitt has to offer, I don't think you should let a mere 12 weeks stand in your way. I also think you would see lot more and gain a more well rounded education @ a bigger facility. Just my two cents . . . .


363 Posts

Anesthesia school is anesthesia school in my opinion, especially when you are not willing to relocate. Most programs, at least the ones in PA will teach you what you need to know, and give you the optimal regional, CV, and pediatric rotations needed to become a good practitioner. There are so many progrms in PA that your choice of a program depends a lot on personal considerations. I personally know someone going to PITT right now, and her clinical experiences were apparently phenomenal, but maybe it is a little pricier. Right now, this person is out in michigan at a pain clinic. I don't know where this was an optional clinical rotation or not. PITT is a very large university that is geared towards being a teaching hospital, so they are used to student influxes. I'm surprised since you recieved your msn at PITT there is no provision for the classes you've already taken, thereby lessening your load at least?


7 Posts

I start Pitt in the fall and am very excited about it. All the people I talk to who are in the program have nothing but praises, so I know it is a great program. You can't lessen the 28 month program because the way they have it set up. In order to get all of your clinical hours and anesthesia core coarses you have to do it in sequence and can't jump ahead, however because you have taken alot of the nonanesthesia core classes you can lessen your work load making it a little less difficult on you. For example I have taken grad level pharm and patho and now I wont have to take it when the clinicals start in the fall. Also have you checked into getting your doctorate in anesthesia instead of another masters? I think there is a way to do this and since you have to wait out the 28 month program why not get your doctorate instead. Just a thought.


33 Posts

Thanks for the interesting point re: looking into a doctorate. I knew that not having to take the core APN courses wouldn't shorten the 28 months....maybe if the program were frontloaded, but it's not. Clinical starts in the first term. I hope I like/get accepted into the Allegheny Valley program, because I am really looking for a 2 year program. Graduating in May vs. December seems like a pretty good deal to me as I am 49 and a single mom. On the other hand, I hear the clinicals at Pitt are awesome--doing Peds at Kiddies, OB at Magee, and all that transplant at Presby. On the other other hand, there is an active anesthesiology residency program at UPMC, and I wonder how much competition there is with residents vs. SRNAs getting 'good' cases.....

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