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DNP Nurse Anesthesia Program

anesthesia student in simulation lab


The School of Nursing offers a BSN to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program in Nurse Anesthesia.

The 36-month program requires a minimum of 86 course credits, including core courses and anesthesia specialty courses.

The program integrates research, physiology, pharmacology, pathophysiology, and anesthesia principles and prepares students for the national certification examination.

The application deadline for the May 2022 class is September 15, 2021. Interviews will be held the week of October 25th. In-person interviews are preferred, but applicants may interview via Zoom upon request. 

Virtual Open House

Thursday December 9, 2021: 5-6pm

Join us at one of our upcoming virtual Graduate School Open House events on Zoom! You'll have the opportunity to learn more about Western Carolina University,  understand the Graduate School application process, and meet key program representatives.

Register Today


Program Overview

Location: Biltmore Park

Program Length: 36-Months

Small Classes, Low Student-Faculty Ratio

App. Deadline: September 15

100% Pass Rate for Certification

Competitive tuition costs

Please visit our Admissions page for complete details on admissions requirements.

The Nurse Anesthesia Program's mission is to create an academic center of teaching and learning excellence for the advancement of nurse anesthesia practice. The program seeks to promote clinical scholarship and life-long learning and aims to support skilled and ethical service to our communities. Through nurse anesthesia research, education, and practice, students and faculty will seek to enhance the quality of life for people of all cultures, economic levels and geographic locations.

The BSN to Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Program in Nurse Anesthesia is a 36-month program.

Graduate students may transfer up to nine credit hours (with a grade of B or better) with approval of the Program Director. Transfer credit requested for doctoral level courses at Western Carolina University must be designated as doctoral level as noted on the official institutional transcript where the transfer credit was earned.


Reasons to Choose WCU’s Nurse Anesthesia Program



  • Small co-hort, 14 to 16 students per class
  • Diverse clinical experience with no competition from other anesthesia learners
  • Program faculty with extensive scholarship
  • 100% pass rate for national certification exam
  • Unique learning experiences at three clinical sites where CRNAs are sole anesthesia providers;

Clinical Anesthesia Experience: Asheville Surgery CenterBlue Ridge Regional Hospital, Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital, Frye Regional Medical CenterHarris Regional HospitalHaywood Regional Medical CenterMcDowell HospitalMission Hospital, Norton Children's HospitalPardee HospitalAdvent HospitalSt. Lukes Hospital, Transylvania Regional Hospital

Program Director and Core Faculty

Ian Hewer

Assistant Professor

PhD, CRNA, Program Director

Mason McDowell

Assistant Professor


Mark A. Kossick

Director of Graduate Programs, Professor


William Wade

Assistant Professor


Allison Teeples

Assistant Professor


2021 Student Data

Female: 73.3%
Male: 26.7%
Average pre-admission overall GPA: 3.74

Attrition rate (2021): 6%
Overall attrition (2009-2021): 9.5%

First-time test takers (2021): 100%
National average (2020): 85.2%

Overall pass rate (2009 - 2021): First-time test takers: 92.9%
Overall pass rate (2009 - 2021): 100%

Employed within six months of graduation: 100% 
Overall employment rate within six months of graduation (2009 - 2021): 100%

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