The Department of Nurse Anesthesia at Virginia Commonwealth University was organized in 1969 as a "School" for Nurse Anesthetists.


History and distinctions

Established in 1969, the VCU Department of Nurse Anesthesia is one of nine departments in the VCU College of Health Professions. We are located in a large, urban Carnegie Research Intensive University with more than 31,000 students.

Our history

Since 1931, the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA) has been committed to the advancement of quality education to highly competent and professional nurse anesthetists. AANA has supported doctoral education for entry into nurse anesthesia practice by 2025.

  • 1969: A School of Nurse Anesthesia is established at VCU, the first teaching program to be implemented in the newly organized School of Allied Health Professions at the Medical College of Virginia campus.
  • May 1979: The Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia degree becomes the first such offering within the profession of nurse anesthesia. While of major importance to VCU, it marks a significant milestone for the specialty of nurse anesthesia.
  • 2005 – 2007: Faculty in the VCU Department of Nurse Anesthesia develop and implement the first Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP) degree program in the country.
  • June 2016: VCU’s entry to practice DNAP is fully approved. The department ceases future enrollment into the MSNA and MSNA-DNAP program options.
  • January 2017: The first cohort of entry to practice DNAP graduate students begin their program.