Nurse Anesthesia

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Program Overview

The Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) in nurse anesthesia concentration is a full-time, 36-month program that prepares students as expert clinicians for every stage and setting in which anesthesia is delivered to patients. Students gain hands-on experience in a variety of regional (neuraxial and peripheral block) and general anesthesia techniques under the supervision of certified registered nurse anesthetists and MD faculty. From routine surgical cases, to trauma, to major burn situations, you'll work on a variety of scenarios to expertly prepare you for the challenges that lie ahead.

In addition to becoming skilled clinicians, graduates are prepared to be healthcare leaders who can care for a variety of patients within their specialty, while using a cross-population perspective to assess, manage, and evaluate common problems. Graduates will apply knowledge about organizations, business management, information technology, and policy-making to improve systems of healthcare delivery. They are also prepared to assume a variety of leadership roles, including executive positions in healthcare organizations, directors of clinical programs, and university-based faculty positions with a clinical focus.

The Fairfield University Nurse Anesthesia Program was re-accredited in 2021 by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) and is currently accredited through Spring 2031. This accreditation includes both the North Benson Fairfield, CT and Austin, TX campuses. Individuals requesting additional information can contact the council at 10275 W. Higgins Road, Suite 906, Rosemont, IL 60018-5602 or phone (847) 655-1160. View a complete list of COA accredited programs.

Sneak Peek | Fairfield University School of Nursing and Health Studies

Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) in Nurse Anesthesia – Austin, Texas

Please note, as a new location, our DNP Nurse Anesthesia program based in Austin, TX has been fully accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs.

Applicants for both locations – Fairfield, CT and Austin, TX – must apply through NursingCAS. The application will be available on NursingCAS beginning on January 1 and will close on August 1 for the following summer enrollment. Only applications submitted and verified by August 1 will be considered.

Fairfield Egan Fast Facts

Top 100
 Best Grad Nursing Programs

– U.S. News & World Report

Doctorate of Nursing Practice in Connecticut

- U.S. News & World Report

Top 5%
Best Nursing Schools in the Nation
- College Factual
Best Nursing Practice Doctor's Degree Schools in the New England Region
- College Factual

Requirements & Curriculum

Required Courses

Epidemiology and Biostatistics
Advanced Healthcare Policy
Research Methods for Evidenced-Based Practice
Advanced Nursing Roles and Reflective Practice
Social and Behavioral Determinants of Health
Research Translation for Clinical Practice
Finance and Quality Management in Healthcare Organizations
Information Technology for Healthcare Improvement
Leadership and Interprofessional Collaboration
DNP Immersion
DNP Seminar I
DNP Seminar II
Advanced Health Assessment
Advanced Pharmacology
Advanced Pathophysiology for Anesthesia Practice
Human Anatomy and Physiology for Nurse Anesthetists
Chemistry and Physics for Nurse Anesthetists
Pharmacologic Strategies in Anesthesia Practice
Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice I
Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice II
Clinical Orientation and Specialty Rotations
Regional Anesthesia and Pain Management in Clinical Practice
Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice III
Clinical Correlation Conference
Principles of Nurse Anesthesia Practice IV
Nurse Anesthesia Residency I
Nurse Anesthesia Residency II
Nurse Anesthesia Residency III
Nurse Anesthesia Residency IV
Nurse Anesthesia Residency V

The program is 100 credits comprised of didactic, simulation, and clinical courses. Simulation is incorporated across the curriculum, and clinical experiences begin after the first year with the Transition to Nurse Anesthesia Residency, followed by Nurse Anesthesia Residencies I-V. Upon graduation, students are eligible to sit for the certification examination administered by the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists.

A detailed list of course requirements, offerings, and more can be viewed in the University’s course catalog.

Clinical Affiliations

Nurse anesthesia students spend 21 months in clinical learning alongside CRNAs and anesthesiologists. Clinical hour requirements average 32–40 hours of operating room time per week and by graduation, graduates exceed the minimum clinical requirements set forth by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA). The COA requires a minimum of 2,000 clinical hours and 650 cases for graduation. Students move throughout their clinical experiences utilizing graduated clinical privilege levels allowing for more autonomy and independence as they progress.

Students obtain their clinical experience at the following approved clinical sites. Students gain hands on experience with general, regional, and peripheral nerve block techniques under the close supervision of a supportive team of CRNA and MD clinical faculty. In addition to routine cases, our nurse anesthesia students gain experience in trauma, major burn, and high-risk obstetrical cases. Enrichment rotations are provided to further enhance clinical experiences and cases. Students will rotate to a minimum of two clinical sites during their clinical rotations.

Accreditations & History

The Fairfield University Nurse Anesthesia Program in both campuses is fully accredited by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) through May 2031.

Fairfield University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (formerly the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education in the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc.) The Egan School of Nursing & Health Studies is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education through 2027. These accreditations include both the North Benson Fairfield, CT and Austin, TX campuses.

Our 36-month, full-time program offers a Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) with a concentration in nurse anesthesia through Fairfield University. Upon graduation, the student will be eligible to take the National Certifying Examination (NCE) to become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA).

Our DNP Nurse Anesthesia program based in Austin, TX has been fully approved by the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs.

1963 The Bridgeport Hospital School of Nurse Anesthesia opened in conjunction with Bridgeport Anesthesia Associates.
1964 1st graduating class consisted of only 2 students.
1985 The program became affiliated with the Graduate Biology Department at Southern Connecticut State University. Students graduated with a Masters Degree in Biology and a certificate in Nurse Anesthesia.
2007 The program left its affiliation with Southern and paired with Fairfield University.  Students graduated with a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN).
2011 The program accepted its first Doctoral class.  Students are now awarded their Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP) upon completion of the program.
2012 The program partnered with Waterbury Hospital and Northern Westchester Hospital to provide clinical experiences to our SRNAs.
2013 The last MSN cohort graduated.
2014 The first DNP cohort graduated.
2014 Danbury Hospital became a clinical site for the program.
2018 Johns Hopkins Hospital and Park Avenue Medical Center became clinical sites for the program.
2019 Norwalk Hospital became a clinical site for the program.
2020 Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center was added as a clinical site.

Stamford Hospital and Bristol Hospital were added as clinical sites.


New York Presbyterian-Queens, Saint Francis Hospital, Saint Mary's Hospital, and Mercy Medical Center were added as clinical sites.


Fairfield University Nurse Anesthesia received it's 10-year reaccreditation from the Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs. 


The program changed it's name to Fairfield University Nurse Anesthesia Program. 

2024 Our Nurse Anesthesia Program in our Austin, TX campus became fully accredited  by the Council on Accreditation. 

Stag Spotlight

Muhammed Butt headshot

Muhammed Butt

Get To Know Muhammed
What were your reasons for choosing Fairfield's graduate program?
I chose Fairfield University's DNP Nurse Anesthesia program for several heartfelt reasons. Firstly, the kindness and support of my program director, Dr. Steven Belmont, left a lasting impression on me. His genuine care for the students and dedication to our success was a significant factor in my decision. Additionally, the picturesque beauty of the campus provided an inspiring and tranquil environment for learning and personal growth. Furthermore, the university's commitment to offering ample opportunities for student involvement in conferences and extracurricular activities demonstrated a strong focus on holistic development. These factors combined to create an environment where I felt I could thrive both academically and personally.

What have you liked about your Fairfield education?
I hold a profound appreciation for the faculty of the anesthesia department at Fairfield University. Their exceptional attunement to our needs as students is truly remarkable. Whether it's addressing a concern or considering a suggestion from our cohort, every matter is met with the utmost importance and care. This deep level of engagement fosters a nurturing and supportive learning environment. Furthermore, the educational strategy employed in our program is particularly unique. By incorporating a diverse array of professors from various specialties and disciplines to lecture on topics in our curriculum, our learning experience is continuously enriched. This approach ensures that the content remains fresh and the teaching styles are dynamic, allowing for a multifaceted and engaging learning journey. Additionally, the state-of-the-art simulation labs at Fairfield University are a testament to the institution's commitment to providing cutting-edge resources for its students. These labs offer a realistic and immersive learning environment, which I believe will significantly contribute to my preparedness and confidence as I approach graduation. Overall, my education at Fairfield University has been an inspiring journey, marked by a dedicated faculty, a dynamic curriculum, and exceptional resources, all of which I am deeply grateful for.

Please explain what you would tell someone considering an advanced degree at Fairfield.
If you're considering an advanced degree at Fairfield University, I would wholeheartedly encourage you to pursue it. The faculty's approach to teaching and their overall demeanor are critical factors in shaping a graduate student's experience, and at Fairfield, you'll find an exceptional level of care and attention to detail from every faculty member you interact with. The supportive and nurturing academic environment has been a highlight of my time here. In addition to the academic excellence, Fairfield University offers a wonderful balance of recreational and relaxation opportunities. The RecPlex is a fantastic facility where you can unwind with a game of basketball or engage in other fitness activities after a challenging exam. The beautiful campus grounds, including a tranquil fountain (my favorite spot), provide the perfect setting for relaxation and reflection. Overall, Fairfield University offers a well-rounded and enriching experience for graduate students.

Please describe how working toward your advanced degree at Fairfield has affected your life.
Pursuing my advanced degree at Fairfield University has profoundly enriched my life, both professionally and personally. The program has connected me with a diverse group of professionals, each bringing a wealth of experience to the table. These connections go beyond mere academic interactions; they are genuine relationships that extend outside the classroom. We often find ourselves engaging in meaningful conversations over a meal at a local restaurant or connecting on a deeper level at the various conferences that Fairfield University provides for its students. This blend of professional growth and personal connections has significantly enhanced my educational journey, making it a truly transformative experience.

Please describe any interesting project or research opportunity you have had while at Fairfield.
During my time at Fairfield University, I have had the privilege of engaging in a fascinating research opportunity that explores the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in enhancing the efficiency of anesthesia providers in the operating room. The rapid advancements in AI have ushered in a new era where technology can sometimes outperform human precision in certain tasks. My research delves into the potential of clinical decision support systems to prevent intraoperative hypotension and to predict the need for increased sedation. This exploration into the synergistic relationship between AI and anesthesia practice is not only intriguing but also holds promise for revolutionizing patient care. I am eager to further investigate these technological advancements as part of my doctoral project, with the aim of contributing to the evolution of anesthesia practice through innovative solutions.

Rachel Edelman

Get To Know Rachel
What were your reasons for choosing Fairfield's graduate program?
Excellent clinical experience, highly recommended by alumni.

What have you liked about your Fairfield education?
I love how supported I have felt throughout both my clinical and didactic experience.

Please explain what you would tell someone considering an advanced degree at Fairfield.
Take the time to visit this beautiful campus and talk to the faculty.

Please describe how working toward your advanced degree at Fairfield has affected your life.
Working toward my advanced degree at Fairfield has forced so much growth for me, both professionally and personally. Earning an advanced degree is a marathon and as such it requires patience, endurance, and meticulous time management because life doesn't stop just because you're back in training.

Please describe any interesting project or research opportunity you have had while at Fairfield.
I am currently working on a quality improvement initiative as a part of my DNP project with the hopes of instituting a tube feed management protocol for major burn patients at Bridgeport Hospital.
Sabrina Novak headshot

Sabrina Novak

Get To Know Sabrina
What were your reasons for choosing Fairfield's graduate program?
After extensive conversations with students who had glowing reviews, I decided on Fairfield University for its exceptional Nurse Anesthesia program, ranking in the top 5% nationally. With near-perfect board pass rates over the past three years and consistently low attrition rates, the program's success is evident. Meeting the faculty assured me of not only gaining invaluable mentors but also becoming part of a supportive community that fosters success. Fairfield's program boasts affiliations with various clinical sites across multiple states, and the faculty's dedication ensures a smooth journey through the rigorous three-year program. Opting for this school has proven to be one of the wisest choices I've made.

What have you liked about your Fairfield education?
I have found great value in the sense of community fostered at Fairfield University. The supportive staff members are readily accessible and actively engage in teaching, including the Director and Assistant Director, who participate in hands-on instruction during simulations. Additionally, the program hosts networking events to facilitate student interaction and camaraderie. Furthermore, each student is paired with a mentor from the senior class to navigate the demanding three-year doctoral program.

Please explain what you would tell someone considering an advanced degree at Fairfield.
I highly recommend considering Fairfield University. Situated within a picturesque campus adorned with abundant green spaces, serene lakes, and modern amenities such as a state-of-the-art gym and cozy coffee shops, the university offers a welcoming environment. Additionally, Fairfield, Connecticut, boasts a wonderful neighborhood and vibrant community with ample recreational opportunities. Renowned for its academic excellence, Fairfield University is consistently ranked among the top institutions, with its Nurse Anesthesia program recognized as one of the nation's premier nursing schools.

Please describe how working toward your advanced degree at Fairfield has affected your life.
My experience at Fairfield University has been a challenging journey thus far, one of the most demanding endeavors I've undertaken. Amidst tears and laughter, I've forged countless memories, recognizing that the journey is far from over. As I strive to evolve into an exceptional healthcare provider, the unwavering support of the faculty has been invaluable. Their dedication to student success is palpable, with their constant availability for assistance. The nurturing community within the Nurse Anesthesia program at Fairfield University fosters an environment of support and camaraderie. Confident in my continued growth, I trust in the guidance provided throughout this program as I progress towards my goals.

Please describe any interesting project or research opportunity you have had while at Fairfield.
My current research paper delves into the critical role of simulation in enhancing students' self-efficacy levels within nurse anesthesia programs. Drawing from personal experiences, I've come to recognize simulation as a cornerstone of effective education in this field. Indeed, it's difficult to envision navigating the program and transitioning to clinicals without the foundational knowledge gained through simulation. At Fairfield University, professors consistently integrate simulation across various topics within our curriculum. My project aims to investigate this symbiotic relationship between simulation and self-efficacy enhancement.
Alexis Marsico headshot

Alexis Marsico

Get to Know Alexis
What were your reasons for choosing Fairfield University for your advanced degree?
Its strong reputation, diverse clinical locations, and the nurturing, supportive faculty.

What did you like about your Fairfield education?
The relationships I formed with my colleagues as well as the confidence I graduated with because of the extensive coursework, practical simulations, and challenging clinical rotations.

Please explain what you would tell someone considering an advanced degree at Fairfield.
I'd discuss the qualifications and experience of faculty members within the field of nurse anesthesia, as well as the level of support and guidance students can expect from faculty throughout their academic journey. Additionally, I would provide information about the prestigious resources and facilities available to students, such as the realistic simulation labs.

Please describe how your advanced degree at Fairfield has affected your life.
Completing an advanced degree at Fairfield University has had a profound impact on my life. Professionally, I have become a confident CRNA with the skills necessary to excel in my career. Beyond the classroom, my time at Fairfield has allowed me to forge lasting connections with peers, mentors, and alumni, creating a supportive network that continues to enrich my personal and professional life. These relationships have opened doors to new opportunities, collaborations, and friendships that I cherish deeply.

Please describe any interesting project or research you worked on while at Fairfield.
For my DNP project, I studied the way in which an education session provided to anesthesia providers would increase provider compliance with manometer use after intubation. This was my first introduction to a quality improvement project.

More About Doctor of Nursing Practice - Nurse Anesthesia

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Frequently Asked Questions

30/year for the Fairfield, CT North Benson Road campus and

15/year for the Austin, TX campus. 

The nurse anesthesia program’s NCE Board pass rates meet the current Council on Accreditation's benchmark.

2021: 100% first-time pass rate.

2022: 92% first-time pass rate, 100% second time.

2023: 100% first-time pass rate.

2024: 100% first-time pass rate.


The attrition rate for the 2022 cohort was 4%.

The attrition rate for the 2023 cohort was 6%.

The attrition rate for the 2024 cohort was 6%. 

All graduates have been employed by the date of graduation.
  • The nurse anesthesia program is a Full-Time program requiring an extensive time commitment to complete the rigorous clinical and academic requirements. It requires personal and social sacrifices for both the student and his/her support systems.
  • Students should expect to spend approximately 60 hours/week engaging in program related activities once nurse anesthesia residency begins. This does not include study time or class preparation.
  • Decisions to continue working must be made by the individual student but the program administration highly discourages full-time employment. 

Students can transfer a maximum of two courses (6 credits total). These courses must be approved by the Assistant Dean of Graduate Studies after careful review. The fixed tuition cost will not change if you transfer credits into the program.

A critical care area is defined as one where the registered professional nurse manages one or more of the following in an intensive care setting:

  • Invasive hemodynamic monitors
  • Cardiac assist devices
  • Mechanical ventilation
  • Vasoactive infusions

The nurse anesthesia program tuition is set prior to each cohort starting and divided evenly by nine semesters.

  • All students enrolled in the nurse anesthesia program carry a full-time credit load and are therefore eligible for financial aid throughout the program.
  • There is limited federal grant money in the form of HRSA-Nurse Anesthesia Traineeship Grants, depending upon the fiscal year and award received by the university. 
  • $3,000 nonrefundable tuition desposit which is credited toward your Bursar account for the first semester tuition. 
  • Anesthesia texts 
  • Core & APRN course text books 
  • Lap top computer
  • SEE exam registration if unable to meet program benchmark.
  • Nurse licensure fees 
  • BCLS, ACLS, PALS certification & recertification
  • NCE 
  • Living/travel expenses for distant clinical sites

Call or email Diana Chevrette, Administrative Assistant for the Nurse Anesthesia Program, or (203) 254-4000 x2701 for more information.

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