VCU CRNA 2013 - page 6

I just wanted to thank everyone who posted on this website from prior years! All of the advice really helped me prepare for my interview at VCU! I start August 2013. If anyone has questions about... Read More

  1. by   mpg234
    Hey all! I'm happy to say that I was just accepted to start fall 2014 . I'm so excited! My husband and I were not too craxy about Richmond though when we visited, what's it really like to live there? Where do y'all live? Is there stuff to do? Nature-y stuff nearby?

    Also, how's the school itself? Do you like it? I guess that should have been my first question. Lol.

    Thanks in advance for your help!
  2. by   missnurse01
    hey mpg congrats!!

    Most people will say that if you are going to live in RVA to live in the fan area. If you sign up for the safety text alerts you will get an idea now of where most of the crime is. Many students hear gunshots out there windows, or there is crazy police stuff going on downtown. Part of an inner city school I guess. Some people live out on the West End, which is nicer, about 20-30 minute commute. We live in Chesterfield, so south of the city. Takes me about 25 min to get in, and I do not have to get on any tolls. That is something else to think about when deciding where to live. I pay as much in rent for an older house as they do close to the school. So just look around. There is lots to do, look around the RVA website. You will not have time for any of it when school starts though. We moved when our lease was up at the end of May, and I did a travel nurse contract in between the time which was awesome. We got to go the beach, Williamsburg, etc.

    I am pretty granola but haven't been able to branch out much for nature-y stuff. We live near a big state park that is nice, and I know some people went hiking and canoeing before school started. No idea what you like. No idea where you are moving from to compare! I spent the last 4 years in the Seattle area, and there is way less stuff here than there it seems, organized anyway.

    You should have asked all those questions about school before you applied! Lol. I found previous students at all the school I was looking at to talk to before I applied, I wanted to know what I was getting myself into.

    I have no idea to tell you how it's going. The faculty is very supportive. At this point in the madness of studying none of us like it. Sometimes we think we made a mistake. The people about to graduate say they would never do it again, but I have heard that from many people from many diff schools as it is just so time consuming. There is really not enough time to adequately study for a test. The volume of knowledge is too much. We are surviving though. You know the studying is too much when we get ***** about having to go to our OR observation days. We get to do nearly anything they ask us, but really, it's cutting into study time and I'd rather not be there lol. We all say it. I think it is a wonderful program, yes things are always being tweaked to try to optimize it for us. but it's like that everywhere. I am very happy with my decision, esp as I hear what students in other programs are going through.

    Good luck and congrats!
  3. by   CoffeeL
    Do you see your children missnurse? I keep hearing that I will not see them for the next three years- which makes me pretty sad. Do you have time for family dinner or a few hours on the weekend? I am okay with the time commitment, I just want to be fully prepared for what I am getting myself into. Oh, I will starting at VCU in the fall of next year. Woo hoo! Who did you contract through? That sounds like a great idea. What about paying for school? Does everyone just take out loans and grad plus loans? Is there any leeway on the in state/out of state tuition? I have 1,000,000 questions and I know you are busy- I appreciate your help!
  4. by   missnurse01
    hey coffee congrats! always feel free to email here or send me a message. Might take a while to get to you but I will! lol
    Really from here to when you start and after, feel free.
    Seeing the children, yes I see them every night at dinner time, for 30-60 minutes. My husband cooks the dinner while I study.
    I kiss them goodnight.
    I see them playing outside the window while I study. I see them for brief 5 minutes snatches here and there. My husband was picking me up for school before which was nice b/c we had a half hour drive that I could ask about their day and talk to them. But now I carpool. For me, it would have been heartbreaking if they were super little. My youngest is 9, so they aren't crying at my door b/c I can't read to them every night before bed like some of my other classmates are going through. Since my husband is a stay at home dad, and we homeschool, I also do not have to get the household up and to daycare or elsewhere before school. That's a load off compared to what I hear from other parents.
    How much time you have for them is going to depend on your ability to limit sleep, or tolerate lower grades. You are never finished studying, you have never even gone through things enough to say that you are now 'reviewing'. You never feel ready for a test. The volume of info is overwhelming.

    Your time commitment will be what you make it. I am living like a single person, at home with mom and dad to take care of me. Except it's my husband that is doing everything. I am very grateful for him! He is doing all the household chores. So if you will be required to do anything other than study, your time will be even more decreased.

    No I have no time on the weekend. We do group study for about 8-10 hours, and I study before and after that.

    I always traveled with Cirrus Medical staffing. Traveled before with them for 3 years and never had a problem.
    Some people saved a little money. Most took out the most you can for federal loans and private loans. There is a max sadly. It is a huge chunk of money. It leaves about 2500 bucks a month. Work like heck and now and pay off everything you can. We had no credit cards and only one car, paid off. Unless you come and work in this state, and prove residency in that way, you will not be able to apply the next year. But you have to prove that you are going to stay in this state after grad. Look on VCU website, financial aid has the paperwork there that you can look at for their requirements to prove residency. If you could move here before the end of the year and start working, then you could have in state tuition next year. Many of us have looked at the military, but you really have to do it for great reasons. I wanted to do it but am unable d/t medical reasons. I was going to do reserves.

    feel free to ask, or message me.

    Last edit by Esme12 on Oct 23, '13 : Reason: TOS/names removed
  5. by   CoffeeL
    Thank you so much- this is what I expected. My kids are very young so it will definitely be a challenge but my husband is amazing so at least I have him. What would you have done in the months before the program to prepare for the courses, if anything? I am finishing up a masters program now and I want to stay in "school mode" before the program starts. My O-chem is not very strong but I don't have time to take a whole course- what specifically would have been helpful for you to KNOW before school started? Thanks again- you have been a great resource for me in the last few months without even knowing it!
  6. by   missnurse01
    Did you take grad level phys? If not, find one and take it. Or just audit one if you can, that way you save money. Sometimes they allow you to audit for a lower fee. If not, I found Dr Najeebs site very helpful. Wish I had watched more than just the respiratory portion! I paid for the 2 year access. I have watched other lectures, or parts of, here and there and he was helpful in other subjects areas as well. If you can really get some good studying in for physiology, it won't be so horrific. It is a major time eater. They are having a new edition of our book for that class come out for next year, so you should prob be able to get some pretty cheap of the current edition. I thought focusing on resp stuff would help me, gas laws, gas equations, etc, but really that has been very little so far. That part has been more manageable. The phys will kill you. And they talk about phys stuff in every other class so it overlaps, lol! Here is the current isbn: 978 1 4 16062 16 5. It doesn't cover everything, and it isn't even 'required' but get it and start memorizing. Or watch Dr. Najeeb repeatedly. Did you take gen chem and ochem already? I am very happy I went back and took them. Still happy I took physics too! lol

    Getting your life in order so you can study is going to be more important on a day to day basis. The - you is going to watch the kids if hubby works, should we get a nanny to help with kids and housework, write out the budget/bills so hubs knows when to pay what (unless he does already), make food and shopping lists - meal planning. If he doesn't shop have him start going with you to see what you buy, brands you like, etc. If he doesn't do a lot of independent time with the kids now, have him start doing road trips with them, small and long, errand running etc - as he will have to do it with kids in tow for a couple of years. Join homeschool groups on yahoo, there are a few in the area and they make playdates for the young kids - nice to see other parents and kids even if you are going to do public school. Try to move out early to know the area, visit the beach in the summer, go to Williamsburg, amusement park, hiking, etc, whatever you all like. If you all are here and in a pattern where the family is running okay without you there all day and evening before school starts, then it will go MUCH easier the first bit of school...when you are poleaxed from the amount of stuff they want you to know, but still need to do family stuff. Est the kids doctor, dentist, etc. Everything that will need to happen without you. Think of the next 2 years, think of any and everything that will need to happen and make a master calendar. We have one on evernote that we share back and forth, along with honey-do lists and meal planning. It helps to guide the day/week so he knows what i need without my having to harp on him, lol.

    And when you get here, my hubs is a stay at home dad and kids love to play with all ages. More than happy to have park days whenever.

    Feel free to continue here or message me. Good luck.
  7. by   acuna_matata
    Congrats to all of you who go accepted! Awesome!
    Would u guys mind sharing how many years experience in critical care? GRE scores? GPA?
    Any advice...
  8. by   CoffeeL
    Missnurse- I will PM you as soon as I have my 15 posts! I took grad level pathophysiology, gen chem, and the VCU medicinal chem course but I think the physiology book you recommended will be a good refresher. Also just downloaded evernote- I so appreciate your help.
  9. by   darussian5290
    Quote from cli632
    I just wanted to thank everyone who posted on this website from prior years! All of the advice really helped me prepare for my interview at VCU! I start August 2013. If anyone has questions about interviewing I'd love to help good luck to everyone still going through the grueling interview process!!
    I was wondering if you could share what your GPA, GRE, experience, etc. was. I know that VCU is ranked #1 in the nation so it has to be really competitive to get into it. What kinds of qualification make a person stand out? I know the minimum requirements from the website, but what are some things that I could do extra while I get my BSN that will make me more qualified?
  10. by   Robbinaj
    Hi there! I got accepted to VCU 2014 as well! Can't wait!!!! I already live in Richmond and work at VCU if anyone has questions. I think it's a great city!! Lots of good restaurants and good bar scene! I have a two year old though so no time for partying any more. Ido think you all moving to the area will like it although we may not have time to enjoy once the program starts! I am concerned about finances and obtaining loans since I will need to essentially live off loans while in school! Anyone have any tips?!?
  11. by   give em zzzs
    For all of you who are stressing not seeing your friends and other family, just remember this: You probably felt that way in nursing school (I know I did) & before you knew it, you had graduated & caught up with everyone & hadn't missed a beat. This will be the same way. Good luck everybody!
  12. by   give em zzzs
    ------said NRSA 403 Foundations for Medicinal Chemistry would satisfy the 200 Level Chemistry requirement. If I can have a BSN GPA of 3.5 or higher, CCRN, ALS, PALS, be active on work committees, and have 1.5 years of SICU (Level 2 Trauma Hospital) experience, is it realistic of me to think that would be enough to get accepted into VCU's CRNA program? Do you feel that I should take more Chemistry classes? I took CHM 101 & 102 but would need CHM 111 & 112 before taking a 200 Level Chemistry course. Another question: Anybody know about how many people got an interview and of those people, how many actually got accepted into VCU?
    Last edit by DidiRN on Dec 2, '13
  13. by   missnurse01
    They changed how they interviewed this year. They only interviewed tier one applicants. They interviewed a lot less people. I know some that looked awesome on paper and were waitlisted, it could just be the applicant pool was awesome this year. Last year we competed for about 5 people per spot.
    Each location takes a different amount. 5 at nova and Roanoke, like 12 at Abingdon, and 24 ish in Richmond.