kkTrg-zlpmDYP_bho1NKLnEUrXg A Student CRNA Blog: Succeeding CRNA Interview!

Monday, April 30, 2012

Succeeding CRNA Interview!

Its that time huh?
You have a CRNA interview but are not sure on how you should proceed?
Even though I have discussed in my previous post what one might expect in an interview, it is hard to really pinpoint on what one might be asked exactly. So, I decided to write a post giving you some tips to consider on what YOU can do during your first (hopefully only) interview at a CRNA school to leave a good impression!

1) Dress code
NO Hawaiian shirts! As clear as it seems, its not. You be surprised what our minds can force us into doing on such big days! This is from personal experience. Don't be the one going in for the interview and being the only one without a suit. Even though, a nice shirt and tie for guys might suffice, I highly suggest buying or renting a nice, professional suit for this. And Yes...even if it is hot outside! Ladies, it is very important to limit exposure. Again, as simple as it sounds, it still happens! CRNA school applicants have a higher set of standards to meet professionally as they are already professionals as nurses and this apply right from the get go.

2) Be Humble
Had 10 years of ICU experience, 5 of ER, 5 of cath lab? Share it in your resume and I can guarantee you they have read it. So, don't flaunt it. You never know it can play for you in the right amount or against you if you promote it too much. When I walked into my first class, I was told by my instructors "leave your nursing background out the door". If you were good at certain things and knew them inside out, it may be of value but keep it with you until you need it.

3) Know your Experience
This is an add on to the one above. I did say that you will have to change your mindset from being a nurse eventually, but you better know your experience. By that I mean, if you write in your application that you are a neuro nurse, you are putting yourself out there to be tested on anything neuro...yes...anything! 
I do want to make it clear that there will be a lot that you don't know, just be honest and don't make up stuff.

4) Dealing with bad GPA
So you applied disregarding your bad GPA to see what happens and to your surprise you got an interview call (like me). What do you do? Well, the truth is that they saw something in your resume that intrigued them enough to call you. So, DON'T take it lightly! Make your bad look good.
Here's an example
My GPA was a quite low in nursing school, like Bs and Cs (I know...I was shocked too!). That was recovered a to about 3.4 after I got a 4.0 in the BSN (yes...anyone can do that with a BSN!). Even without them mentioning it, I told them that my GPA was low initially but I have worked really hard to improve it so I could make myself eligible for CRNA school. Mention any other extra things like volunteering you did, awards, that your worked two jobs and still got grades etc. Don't beg or stay focused on it, but do give them your perspective.

5) Things to take with you
Most importantly, confidence (just enough...don't overdo!), enthusiasm, smile, along with a pen and notepad. All of them are important but taking a notepad and a good working pen is a must! It shows that you are prepared.
To leave an even better impression, use your notepad and have your questions written out before you go. Again, shows that you are prepared.
And if your questions were answered, look at your notepad at the end of the interview and mention that you had some questions but that they were addressed already.

6) A Good Lasting Impression
At the end of the interview, have the same confidence, energy and smile. Don't look disheartened if you didn't get a question correct. Instead, ask them if they decide not to select your as a candidate for the upcoming class, what can you do to improve yourself? This shows that you are not ready to give up!

A little personal side note: These are the things I made sure I did before my interview and was lucky enough to hear "See you next year" with a pat on my back from a member of the panel as I stood there in the cafeteria line. Its was a wonderful feeling and a sense of relief. Probably doesn't happen often but regardless, your goal is to work hard and not worry about what happens after...because your hard work will pay off!

Hope this helps!
Let me know how it goes.
Good Luck!

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Anesthesia related topics: Soon to come!

3 comments :

Anonymous said...

a new blog for others to follow!
http://crna78-journey.blogspot.com/

srna said...

Good luck with your journey!

Tips on interviewing for crna school said...

Very Nice Article.Thank you for the sharing.

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