Oh boy....I wish that I had made better grades in my 1st undergrad degree. Here's my story....(kind of long)
I have a B.A. in history and sociology from a fairly well known private school in Louisiana. I graduated with a 3.6 (cum). I took some science classes, (Biology w/ lab and made a B). I had plans to go to law school, but decided to become a nurse instead. I applied to a second degree program to a well known private school in Georgia and I am on the road to my BSN '09. Once I found out I was in nursing school I needed to finish taking all my pre reqs. I took 22 hours in one semester (wanted to shoot myself) and made C in Chemistry(I took 2 semesters of chemistry) B in anatomy B in Physiology and A in all my labs. I know I could have been atleast a B chemistry student, but I clearly had my attention split. With all that being said I still graduated with a 3.6.
Ok..so I know I have a long road to go but I truly have an interest in the CRNA profession. At this point I don't know what to do. I wish I had known about going to nursing school atleast 1 year before I graduated with my BA because I could have spread out my pre-reqs and made better grades. I don't find nursing school to be all that hard, but I don't find it to be easy either, and so far I have made high As and Bs on all my exams. I have also signed a work obligation with a local hospital to work for 2 years after school.
Are there any suggestions about things that I might do to create a stronger application for CRNA school so that in a few years when I apply I have a stronger chance of getting in?
Oct 14, '07
Really other than the C's in chemistry your science grades are good. You can always retake some chem courses after you finish up nursing school, like organic or bio. Other than that work in an ICU for a year or two, get your ACLS, PALS and CPR and CCRN. Study for the GRE and take it, most schools want at least 1000, some don't weigh the GRE as heavily and will take lower scores if you have good GPA, experience, etc. I also think most programs prefer Level I facilites for ICU experience since those institutions routinely have the sicker patients, so if you can get into one of those ICU's you would only help yourself.
Other than that, you are on the right track.
Oct 14, '07
I'm not sure I follow the problem here. You have a 3.6 in your first degree and it sounds like (all As and Bs so far) you'll have a 3.5 for your BSN. None of the schools I applied to cared about the science classes before my BSN. I mean, why would they? Your GPA is fine. You can take the CCRN test if you like but only a few schools care about that and even fewer require it. I wouldn't bother unless a school specifically required it.
As far as other things to do to get in - do what the above poster said - work in a Level I if you can. Whatever unit does the most swans, drips and lines is the one you want. Do your best to understand what's being done for your patients and why because that will help you kick butt on your interviews. With a 3.5 you'll get interviews wherever you apply. Think about who might write your recs and then apply when its time.
Oct 15, '07
Quote from piper_for_hire
You can take the CCRN test if you like but only a few schools care about that and even fewer require it. I wouldn't bother unless a school specifically required it.
I would definitely go for the CCRN. The fact that a few good schools actually require it for admission should tell you something right there. For instance, the Duke program is very selective--I believe only 20 get in each year, and all 20 have their CCRN. Why should a school settle for less? 15 years ago, nobody required the CCRN; the trend is changing, and for the better. I would think that in the near future, things are going to get so competitve that the CCRN will be as common a requirement as your ACLS, PALS, and TNCC, which everyone has. In fact, while you are studying for the CCRN, you are also in a way studying for some of the A & P you will need to know well for the CRNA program. When I received my Valley CRNA refresher program flash cards for the CRNA certification I was surprised at how many questions were similar to CCRN questions. For many, the basic A & P was the weak link in their study for the CRNA cert, and unfortunately, where they had to spend the most time preparing when retaking the test. So do it right the first time and give yourself a great foundation and head start into the program. Get your CCRN, it's worth it!!
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