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Monkeyman has 1 years experience and specializes in Critical Care.

Monkeyman's Latest Activity

  1. Monkeyman

    Death in the unit

    I work in a relatively large (30 beds), general system ICU (MICU/SICU mostly). I'm from Canada, and patients typically aren't approved for ICU admission unless they're really ill, as the system is publicly funded. There's been nights where I'll see 2-3 people die. Per month I'd say its probably around 10 or so. 80 beds is HUGE for an ICU!
  2. Hi everyone, I apologize in advance for the length of this post! I've been looking at advanced practice opportunities in nursing and the more I look into the CRNA career stream the more it appeals to me! Any suggestions that anyone can provide are greatly appreciated. Here's my situation: I'm a 27 year old Canadian RN who recently started working in general systems ICU at a large level 1 trauma centre. I am a fresh graduate (graduated in Aug. 2008). I enjoy working in the ICU, and love how much there is to learn. We don't have CRNAs in Canada, and therefore I would have to move to the US to pursue this career stream. I hear you guys have nicer weather down there too! Education wise I have a B.Sc. in molecular microbiology (this was my first degree) and then I did an accelerated track B.ScN. I had around a 3.0-3.5 in my initial degree. Unfortunately my GPA in my B.ScN took a hit as I got quite frustrated with my program. Overall I probably have around a 2.5-3.0 in my nursing courses. I am kind of a molecular pharmacology nerd. I get excited about things like calcium sparks and inward rectifying potassium channels. I found the B.ScN program to be very fluffy, and it didn't seem to matter whether I studied or not; my grades would always be around the same range. I found it very hard to focus on fluffy nursing material and grew more and more frustrated with school. I only attended very few classes and didn't really study. I did, however, really like the practicums. This is what kept me in the program. My questions pertain to academic upgrading. 1) I know some schools will consider applicants who improve their GPA by doing additional course work. Would it make a difference if academic upgrading course was done in Canada vs. in the US? 2) Also, I've heard that some admission committees like to see graduate level science courses. I have taken a few of these w/ grades A, A- range. Would it improve my chances if I were to get an masters in a scientific field? 3) How much weight does a good GRE score have on a applications? I know this varies from school to school, but would a high GRE score somewhat make up for my academic shortcomings? 4) How is research experience viewed by the admissions committees? Would practical research courses/publications help my chances of being accepted? 5) Is more ICU experience considered more desirable? I would like to have 3-5 years of ICU training before applying to CRNA programs. Thanks again for reading through my long post. Any help is greatly appreciated.
  3. Monkeyman

    In 10 years...

    I'm 26, just finished my B.ScN. In 10 years I hope to be on the way to being a nurse practitioner. I hope to also have no student loans at that time!
  4. Monkeyman

    accelerated BsN program questions

    I just graduated from the U of A's program and I'm really glad to be done. Have you thought about applying to U of A's after degree program? I'm not a big fan of the program as its pretty disorganized and you won't get that much clinical exposure, but the faculty are really nice. I think the cut-offs are in the 3.5 range for the program, but I'm not sure. Its also the last 5 full course equivalents I believe. Also, I think the cost of living in Edmonton is probably a little bit better than Calgary or Vancouver, especially when it comes to housing.
  5. Lifting keeps me sane! I couldn't imagine not having a "lifting lifestyle"... Tronix304, those are some really sick numbers especially at your size. Your deads and bench are stellar, and your squat is still over 2x bodyweight, which is solid. Are those numbers for raw lifts? You must compete in powerlifting? Do you do any olympic lifting? My max deadlift is 440 and at the time I was 5'8" - 167. I really want a 3 x bodyweight deadlift raw. I know it will take me many more years, but I hope to get there one day. For now I really wanna get to 500 on deads. Good to see some active guys on this board!
  6. Monkeyman

    Where should a new grad work?

    I actually had an interview w/ neurosciences today for a neurosurgery RN position. It would definitely be an interesting and challenging place to work. Ideally I'm looking for something with a 0.6-0.8 FTE. The cardiac surgery postings look nice! I have a few more interviews next week too with surgical wards, including an ENT and a float position. Does staffing let you pick up shifts on medical units if you work on a surgical units at the UAH? I've heard that at the RAH, if your position is on a surgical ward then you can pick up extra shifts on other surgery units, but usually not on medical units. Is there a lot of extra shifts available nowadays?
  7. Monkeyman

    Where should a new grad work?

    Fiona, totally agree with the fact that its actually nice to see patients get better and get discharged! That's one of the reasons I was leaning towards surgery as well. Are you on a gen. surg. unit? I did a rotation on a gen. surgery unit at the UAH during my schooling, and I really liked it. I'm not sure if there are any postings for gen. surg at the U right now though.
  8. Monkeyman

    Where should a new grad work?

    Fiona I'm applying to the UAH, but I might also be interested in picking up some shifts at the RAH because I loved the unit I was on during the time there. Why do say to stay away from general medicine? Thanks for the input! Corvus, I did get an AHFMR summer studentship, but that was back in 2000 during my first degree!
  9. Monkeyman

    Where should a new grad work?

    Hello everyone, Just wanted to say hi, and that this is a great resources for nurses to have! I'd like to get your opinion on where you think a new graduate nurse should be working. I eventually want to end up in ICU or perhaps ER, but for now I need to build my clinical skills and gain more clinical experience. A little about myself: I am a fresh graduate of the U of Alberta's after degree B.ScN program. My initial degree is a B.Sc. in molecular bio. Ideally I would like to be on a unit where I get to do a lot of hands-on stuff like IVs, trach care, NG tubes, foleys, etc. I love working with my hands! I also want to learn as much as I can about medical procedures, diseases, etc. So far I have interviews from neurosurgery, ENT and general medicine. I'm leaning towards the ENT or neurosurgery. I've been on several general med units before as a student, and I think it would be neat to be on a more specialized unit. Given the nursing shortage you can also easily pick up shifts on med units. Anyways, looking forward to hearing your opinion and being a part of this forum!