Quote from glhrn
Just curious as to what criteria others have used when deciding which schools to apply to. Any input would be greatly appreciated!!
There was only one in my city, and it had a fantastic reputation. I also worked at the facility that administers it. I applied to that one only, with the intention on applying to others the next year if I was not admitted.
Some things to consider:
2. Reputation (NOT US News and World Report rankings, but how much line experience you get, regional experience, independence as a student, etc)
3. Length of program
Things I think you should ignore:
1. Cost of program. Many people will argue with me on this, but whether you choose public vs. private, you are going to join a great profession with more than ample compensation in the future, and paying off student loans will not be a problem. Apply to the programs that fit your needs, regardless of whether they are public or private, and if you get in and it happens to be a private program, so be it. I attend a private school, and many people will not apply because it is approx $1200 per credit hour. Yes, that's a lot of money. I will be approx $50,000 in the hole when I am done with school. But I was careful with my money during school and saved a lot. It's liveable. And I can pay off my student debt in 1-2 years if I choose.
2. Whether you get a MSN, or MNA, or whatever. Doesn't matter. Yes, there will be a few classes that will not be particularly relevant to everyday activities, but the nursing research courses are relevant to what we do - anesthesia research is done every day by CRNAs - and whether you choose to do research in your career or not, you should still be exposed to methods, how to evaluate it, etc. Plus, at least in my experience, there courses were a nice break from the extreme mental stimulation of anesthesia courses. But that's just my two cents.