CRNA Colleges in Arkansas

Do you want to pursue a career as a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA) in Arkansas? Look no further! In this comprehensive guide, we will provide you with all the essential information you need to know about CRNA colleges in Arkansas.

From admission requirements to program overviews and potential career opportunities, we’ve got you covered.

Why Choose a CRNA Career in Arkansas?

Arkansas, popularly known as the Natural State, offers a unique blend of natural beauty, historical charm, and a temperate climate. It is home to several large urban centers, as well as vast rural areas.

If you live in or near Arkansas and have been considering a career as a CRNA, attending a CRNA program in the state could be an excellent option for you.

Becoming a CRNA in Arkansas can open up a world full of opportunities.

CRNAs play a vital role in the healthcare industry, administering anesthesia and ensuring patient safety during surgical procedures.

They work in various practice environment, including hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, and cosmetic surgery practices.

Arkansas is also known for its high salary rate for CRNAs, with an average annual income ranging from $145,020 to $158,840, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Admission Requirements for CRNA Programs in Arkansas

Before you embarking on your journey to becoming a CRNA in Arkansas, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the admission requirements for CRNA programs. While specific requirements may vary between schools, there are some general prerequisites you should be aware of.

To apply for admission to a CRNA program in Arkansas, you need to have:

  1. Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree: Most CRNA programs require applicants to hold a BSN from an accredited institution.
  2. Active RN license: You must have a valid and unrestricted Registered Nurse (RN) license to be eligible for CRNA programs.
  3. Minimum GPA: Many CRNA programs stipulate a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  4. Critical care experience: Experience as an RN at the critical care level is often required. The number of required years of experience may vary between programs.

These are just the general requirements. It’s crucial to research and understand the specific guidelines and prerequisites of each CRNA program you are interested in and in the various school you applied to. Now, let’s explore two of the top CRNA schools in Arkansas and what they have to offer.

1. Arkansas State University

Arkansas State University (ASU) in Jonesboro offers a highly regarded CRNA program that prepares students for a successful career in nurse anesthesia. ASU’s program is designed to provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to excel in anesthesia practice.

Program Overview:

  • Degree Offered: Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)
  • Average Program Length: 36 months
  • Start Month: Varies
  • Clinical Sites: Multiple clinical sites in Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee

ASU’s CRNA program consists of a comprehensive curriculum that includes DNP core courses, nursing anesthesia-related courses, clinical experiences, and a DNP project. During the program, students gain a solid foundation in theoretical nursing practice, advanced clinical anatomy, leadership, policy and healthcare systems, and more.

Clinical training is a vital component of the program, and ASU students have the opportunity to develop their skills at renowned clinical sites, such as Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Baptist Memorial Hospital, and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital.

Admission Requirements:

To apply to ASU’s CRNA program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • BSN degree from an accredited institution
  • Active and unencumbered RN license in the U.S.
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0
  • At least one year of critical care experience as an RN
  • Submission of resume, professional goal statement, and three references

ASU’s CRNA program offers small class sizes and dedicated faculty members who are committed to the success of their students. The program also provides financial aid opportunities to help ease the financial burden of pursuing a CRNA education.

2. University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences

The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) in Little Rock is a prestigious institution widely known for it’s top-notch CRNA program. UAMS is renowned for its interprofessional learning environment and commitment to producing highly skilled clinicians and leaders in the field of healthcare.

Program Overview:

  • Degree Offered: Doctor of Nursing Practice-Nurse Anesthesia (DNP-NA)
  • Program Length: 36 months
  • Start Month: Fall
  • Clinical Sites: Multiple clinical sites in Arkansas

UAMS’ CRNA program is designed to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and competencies required for advanced anesthesia practice. The curriculum includes DNP core courses, nurse anesthesia-related courses, and extensive clinical experiences.

Throughout the program, students will cover a wide range of topics, including research methodology, advanced physiology and pathophysiology, healthcare informatics, advanced health assessment, and economics for complex organizational systems. Clinical practicum experiences are integrated into the program to ensure hands-on training and skill development.

Admission Requirements:

To be considered for UAMS’ CRNA program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • BSN degree from an accredited institution
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0
  • Active and unencumbered RN license
  • At least one year of critical care experience
  • Submission of official transcripts, recommendation letters, and a personal statement

UAMS’ CRNA program offers interprofessional learning opportunities and boasts excellent pass rates on certification exams. The faculty members are experienced practitioners and hold leadership positions in state and national nursing organizations.

Scholarships and financial aid options for CRNA students in Arkansas

Pursuing a CRNA education can be financially demanding and draining, however there are several scholarships and financial aid options available to relieve students in Arkansas.

The Arkansas Association of Nurse Anesthetists (ARANA) offers scholarships specifically for CRNA students. Additionally, many CRNA programs in Arkansas may have their own scholarship opportunities. It is also worth exploring federal financial aid programs, such as grants and loans, to help fund your education. Be sure to research and apply for scholarships and financial aid well in advance to increase your chances of receiving assistance.

CRNA job outlook in Arkansas

The job outlook for CRNAs in Arkansas is promising. As the demand for healthcare services continues to grow, the need for skilled anesthesia providers, including CRNAs, is also increasing. CRNAs are an integral part of the healthcare team and are in high demand in hospitals, surgical centers, and other healthcare facilities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of nurse anesthetists is projected to grow by 45 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. This positive job outlook indicates ample opportunities for CRNAs in Arkansas.


Pursuing a career as a CRNA in Arkansas can be a rewarding and fulfilling journey. With excellent CRNA programs like those at Arkansas State University and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, you have the opportunity to receive top-notch education and training in the state.

Remember to thoroughly research and understand the specific admission requirements and guidelines of each CRNA program you are interested in. Consider factors such as program length, clinical site opportunities, faculty expertise, and financial aid options.

By choosing to pursue a CRNA education in Arkansas, you are taking a significant step towards a successful and fulfilling career in nurse anesthesia. So, start exploring your options, prepare your application, and get ready to embark on an exciting journey towards becoming a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist in Arkansas.

With the growing demand for CRNAs in Arkansas, pursuing a career in this field can lead to a fulfilling and rewarding professional journey.

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