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Programs for ICU nurses and prospective applicants

H3A: Heads, Hearts, and Hands




This program helps to foster the success of nurses who aspire to be excellent anesthetists. 

The Explore track is designed for the ICU nurse who wants to learn more about nurse anesthesia, or for those who are already in the process of applying to a nurse anesthesia program.

Development is focused on the three critical "H's" of success: 

  • technical knowledge (head)
  • self-awareness of one's personality strengths and weaknesses (heart)
  • and competence with manual skills (hands).

2018 H3A Explore Session Information 

NEW FOR 2018! 
We will be offering an INTERVIEW PRACTICE SESSION during the JUNE Conference dates. This session will occur on the afternoon of June 11 and enrollment is limited!
You will have the opportunity to interact with two CRNA faculty members to answer your questions for performing your best on the anesthesia school interview. 
Attendance at this session will take the place of one hour of afternoon activity. See the REGISTRATION form for more details! 

2018 H3A Explore Brochure

  • Session 1: Thursday, March 22 – Friday, March 23, 2018 Registration is now full.
  • Session 2: Monday, June 11- Tuesday, June 12, 2018 Registration is now full.
  • Session 3: Monday, October 1- Tuesday, October 2, 2018 Registration is almost full. Please email [email protected] for availability. 


This course provides an introduction to the role of a CRNA, and useful practical tools for gaining admission in the highly competitive environment of anesthesia school applications. Participants learn advanced ICU skills that can either bolster their competence in their current role, or which can serve as the foundation for advanced nursing practice later.  

Course Agenda

Topics addressed in the two-day Explore seminar include:

  • Role of the CRNA
  • Pathophysiology of shock
  • Airway management
  • Advanced ICU pharmacology 
  • Arterial blood gas interpretation and ventilator management
  • Advanced monitoring: BIS, peripheral nerve stimulator, arterial line, invasive pressure monitoring
  • Nuts and bolts of school: planning for finances and family care
  • Admissions to CRNA programs
  • Personality type/self-assessment. "Is CRNA right for me?"
  • Challenges of graduate study in nurse anesthesia.
  • Anesthesia programs: "Which one is best for you?" 
  • Application tips.
  • Learn what top programs most value in applicants. Discuss the "golden applicant".
  • Candid discussion with other prospective and current students.
  • High fidelity human patient simulation lab experience- The Ultimate ICU Challenge. Pit the skills of your team against this robotic patient! 

Comments from H3A participants

    "Thank you so much for providing the opportunity and valuable experience I had while attending H3A last week. I cannot stress enough how much I enjoyed and learned from the two day course. While I already knew that I wanted to pursue nurse anesthesia, H3A solidified my aspirations. The lecturers and students we interacted with were so knowledgeable, confident, inspiring, and I truly hope to emulate them one day. Personally, the program helped me identify aspects of myself that I can highlight while applying and areas that I want to focus on as an ICU nurse and enhance. I am taking many valuable skills with me back to the SICU, and I have you to thank for that! Thank you again for such a wonderful opportunity and I look forward to applying to Wake's CRNA program!"

     "I was accepted into a CRNA program, and the H3A course definitely helped me. The dose calculations and BIS information that I learned about at H3A were both directly tested during my interview. I also had lots of confidence in my preparation because of the entire experience at the H3A conference."

     “I visited from Mayo Clinic for the program. I had a wonderful experience at your program and would recommend it to all my colleagues.  Your lectures and simulation experiences really helped me to develop goals and a plan for the future. I learned a great deal about nurse anesthesia as a profession and am so grateful!  Thank you again!”

“I felt like I got an “inside scoop” on the anesthesia school.”

"This was an excellent program. I feel much better about the application process...Worth every penny!"

"Overall, I loved the course experience. It was well worth the time and money! I would recommend this course to anyone interested in anesthesia."


The H3A program was made possible with the assistance of the Piedmont Triad Partnership through a WIRED grant from the U.S. Department of Labor.

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Last Updated: 08-03-2018

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