Quality Education in the Benedictine Tradition
Office of Graduate and Continuing Education724-805-2933
Herbert W. Boyer School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Computingand Excela Health School of Anesthesia
A new class of graduate students will begin the fall of each year. Students will be accepted to the program by February of the same year they plan to enter the program. To download application materials please see the "tools" on the left hand side of the page.
All application materials should be sent to:Excela Health School of AnesthesiaOne Mellon WayLatrobe, PA 15650Located within Excela Latrobe Hospital, first floor, walk past the "Little Shop" and continue through the History Corridor, take first left before parking garage exit. Please check in with the administrative assistant. If you should have questions, please call:724-537-2638724-539-7608 (FAX)
1. Current licensure as a registered professional nurse.2. Minimum of one year of nursing experience in an acute care setting.3. Baccalaureate degree in nursing or diploma or associate degree in nursing plus a baccalaureate degree other than a BSN, providing the program considers it appropriate.
Because of the time spent in nursing, our students should presumably be more mature and, hence, capable of coping with the stresses inherent in the anesthesia situation. In addition to having the above requirements, applicants must have an overall QPA of 3.0 or above in their undergraduate degree. Applicants need only to apply to Excela Health School of Anesthesia; they do not need to apply to Saint Vincent College.
Selection CriteriaAs with any school of higher education, to be accepted and successfully complete the program, applicants should have a mature attitude, a pleasant personality, and good health. All applicants will be considered without regard to race, gender, color, ethnicity, creed, marital status, age, sexual orientation, disability, or any other factor protected by law. After review of the applicants completed file he/she may be selected for a personal interview with the admissions committee. The Excela Health School of Anesthesia reserves the right to interview only those candidates who show potential to succeed. Selection will be made based on academic and clinical qualifications and recommendations of the admission interviewers.
School of Anesthesia will perform random drug testing and alcohol
screening. The screening will be administered fairly and consistently for
all students in the program.
Required Application Materials (to be sent directly to school)
A complete application, including transcripts and fee, is required every year that you apply. The only exception is that WES transcripts may be used indefinitely, due to cost.
GRE Scores are preferred but not required. School DI Code: 0767.Policy for Transfer Students We do not accept transfer students at this time.
Courses Required for Masters in Nurse Anesthesia ( 56 credits):
Professional Aspects of Anesthesia Practice
0 creditsHSC 500 Advanced
Pharmacology I 3 creditsHSC
501 Advanced Pharmacology II 3 creditsHSC 503 Organic
and Medicinal Chemistry 3 creditsHSC
504 Biochemistry 4 creditsHSC 505 Intro
to Principles of Anesthesia 2 creditsHSC
510 Methods of Research I 3 creditsHSC 512 Medicinal Physics 4 creditsHSC 515 Advanced
Physical/Health Assessment 2 creditsHSC 521 Advanced
Human Anatomy, Physiology, and Pathophysiology I 5 creditsHSC
522 Advanced Human Anatomy, Physiology,
and Pathophysiology II 5 creditsHSC
530 Anesthesia Didactics I 6 creditsHSC
612 Methods in Research II 3 creditsHSC
630 Anesthesia Didactics II 6 creditsHSC
655 Advanced Theory and Practice of Anesthesia
700 Leadership and Management for Nurse
Anesthetists 3 credits
Beverly Silvis, CRNA, MS, MBA, DNP, DirectorDr. Silvis joined the Excela Health School of Anesthesia staff in November 2009 as assistant director. She received her BSN from the University of Pittsburgh in 1981, a MHS from La Roche College in 1994, an MBA from Seton Hill University in 2008, and earned her DNP from Chatham University, Pittsburgh, in 2010. She served as the chief CRNA for Excela Health Frick Hospital in Mount Pleasant for 13 years. Dr. Silvis is also an adjunct faculty member at Saint Vincent College teaching Research, Leadership, and Professional Aspects. Most recently, Dr. Silvis was named Program Director of the Year by the Pennsylvania Association of Nurse Anesthetists. She was nominated by students in the program with a supporting letter of recommendation from the Excela Health Office of Medical Affairs, which oversees the school. The letter from Associate Chief Medical Officer Carol Fox, MD, read in part "Her commitment to and passion for education is unparalleled ... She has spent a great deal of time identifying potential improvements for our clinical teaching locations and her attention to enhancing our curriculum to better meet the education needs of our adult learners has been very well received." The letter also noted her efforts to move the program from master's preparation to doctoral certification, all while maintaining the clinical practice in addition to her role as educator and mentor. The school is conducted in cooperation with Saint Vincent College.
Michael A. DeBroeck, Assistant Director Dr. DeBroeck joined the Excela Health School of Anesthesia as the education coordinator in October 2008. Mike graduated from the University of Texas at Austin, where he received his Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing, 1985. In 1996, he was awarded a Master of Health Science (Anesthesia) degree from Texas Wesleyan University, Fort Worth. Dr. DeBroeck received his Doctor of Nursing Practice degree from Robert Morris University in 2011. He retired from the Air Force in 2005, where he held many anesthesia positions including director of anesthesia and director of perianesthesia services. His clinical experience includes a large amount of regional anesthesia in independent anesthesia settings as well as anesthesia in austere environments during deployments. Most recently he was employed as a CRNA at Excela Health Westmoreland Hospital where he helped design the new anesthesia record, which is being used throughout the Excela Health system. He currently teaches Physics, Advanced Theory, Practice of Anesthesia, and Introduction to Principles of Anesthesia, and is a member of the Admissions Committee.
Susan M. Tranchine, CRNA, PhD. Education CoordinatorDr. Tranchine is a graduate of the Excela Health School of Anesthesia and is a practicing CRNA with the University of Pittsburgh Physicians and Western Pennsylvania Anesthesia Associates. Having earned her MEd and PhD, Tranchine served as Director of Anesthesia Services at Citizen's General Hospital and Mercy Jeannette Hospital. In addition to her administrative and clinical duties, she has experience as an expert witness in anesthesia litigation and as a peer review consultant.
Saint Vincent College Faculty
James G. Barnet, PhDAs a professor of biology, Dr. Barnett completed his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Animal Physiology at the University of California. A former research fellow with the National Research Council/National Aeronautics and Space Administration, he came to Saint Vincent College in 1982 to teach biology. His research interests include skeletal muscle biology and exercise physiology.
Daryle H. Fish, PhDDr. Fish is an associate professor of chemistry at Saint Vincent College. He graduated from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry. He joined the SVC faculty in 1992 and teaches a number of courses related to organic chemistry. His research interests include chemical education, medicinal chemistry, synthetic organic chemistry, and polymer chemistry.
Stephen Jodis, PhDServing as the Dean of the Herbert Boyer School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics, and Computing, Dr. Jodis was employed for 21 years at Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah, Ga., where he held numerous leadership positions. He is a graduate of Auburn University, Ala., with degrees in computer science and engineering. His research interests have varied across the years from software transportation systems and software development environments to software metric, computer science education, and, most recently, cyber security. Dr. Jodis has participated in several National Science Foundation review panels. He has also served as an ABET evaluator (ABET is a non-profit, non-governmental organization that accredits college and university programs in disciplines of applied science, computing, engineering and engineering technology) for the Computing Accreditation Commission (CAC) and is currently an ABET-CAC Commissioner.
Michael E. Rhodes, PhDAn associate professor of biology, Dr. Rhodes is a graduate of Saint Vincent College and Duquesne University with advanced degrees in Pharmacology. He has served as a postdoctoral research fellow at Allegheny General Hospital, Pittsburgh, with continuing employment in the Department of Medicine as a research professor. At obtained additional fellowship training at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Over the past 17 years, he has taught numerous pharmacology courses at Carlow University, Duquesne University and Saint Vincent College. His laboratory focus encompasses sex differences and cholinergic regulation of stress-responsive hormones of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal cortical axis. He has published more than 35 peer reviewed, scientific articles, reviews, and book chapters, and has presented his findings at over 45 conferences. He holds a U.S. patent.
Michael Sierk, PhDDr. Sierk received his doctoral degree in biophysics from the University of Virginia and subsequently pursued postdoctoral research there before coming to Saint Vincent College in 2005. He is a member of the Chemistry Department and directs the Bioinformatics Program.
John J. Smetanka, PhDDr. Smetanka has been a member of Saint Vincent's full time faculty since 1997 and currently serves as the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean. The Latrobe native earned his Bachelor of Science degree in physics from Carnegie Mellon University, a master of science and doctoral degrees in astronomy and astrophysics from the University of Chicago. Prior to joining the staff at SVC, Dr. Smetanka served as Vice President for Research and Development for On Target Mapping, a Pittsburgh-based software company specializing in the development of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). As part of the Math and Science Partnership of Southwestern Pennsylvania, Dr. Smetanka has taken part on a number of local workshops through the partnership as well as at the National Academy of Sciences on the evaluation and implementation of best practices for undergraduate science and mathematics education. The recipient of many honors, he has authored/co-authored many publications and presentations.
Howard Armour, CRNA, MSArmour is the former Program Director of the Excela Health School of Anesthesia, a position he held for nearly 30 years. A graduate of St. Francis School of Nursing and the UPMC School of Anesthesia, he received a bachelor's degree in education and a master's degree in counseling from California University of Pennsylvania. He has co-authored two books, chemical dependency articles for PANA Tidings for several years, and a booklet on the Physics of Anesthesia. He is the recipient of the PANA Program Director of the Year - 2003, and the 2004 Sister Marie Fiest Award for Academic Excellence in Teaching from La Roche College, Pittsburgh. As past president of PANA, he has served on several state and national committees, is a U.S. Army veteran, and has served as a member of the Military Intelligence.
Deana Guastaferro, CRNA, MHSGuastaferro knew she wanted to become a nurse at age 3 when her grandmother taught her how to administer insulin injections. She received her bachelor's degree in nursing from the University of Pittsburgh and worked in intensive care at UPMC Shadyside. Following a traveling nurse assignment in California, she returned home to continue her education with the Excela Health School of Anesthesia and received her Masters of Health Science degree from Saint Vincent College. Employed by the Western Pennsylvania Anesthesia Associates, she is a staff CRNA at Excela Westmoreland Hospital.
Renee Harvey, CRNA, DNPDr. Harvey graduated from Westmoreland-Latrobe Hospital School of Anesthesia in 1996 and is a staff CRNA at Uniontown Hospital. She also served as Uniontown Hospital's clinical coordinator for the School of Anesthesia for many years. She received her Doctorate of Nursing Practice degree from Robert Morris University in May 2011.
Charles McCombs, CRNAMcCombs is a graduate of the Westmoreland Hospital School of Nursing, the Westmoreland-Latrobe Hospital School of Anesthesia and California University of Pennsylvania. His career spans 17 years as a CRNA at Latrobe Hospital, 20 years as chief. Beyond his teaching in the classroom and clinical setting, McCombs and fellow faculty member Howard Armour provide refresher training throughout the United States to prepare student nurse anesthetists for the national certification examination. Active in the anesthetists' professional organizations, he has held various elected positions in the Pennsylvania Association of Nurse Anesthetists and served as a Peer Assistance Advisor for impaired CRNAs. A frequent lecturer at the local, state and national level, McCombs is particularly interested in the Civil War and the origins of modern anesthetic.
James Wasnieski, CRNAA lifelong Pittsburgh resident, Wasnieski earned his Bachelor of Nursing degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master of Health Science degree from La Roche College. The 2005 graduate of the Excela Health School of Anesthesia is employed at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital and considered a trauma/transplant specialist in nurse anesthesia. A frequent guest lecturer, he is a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve and an Iraq war veteran. Beyond his service in Iraq, he was deployed to Walter Reed Army Medical Center where he practiced solo anesthesia. He is a representative to the bioterrorism committee at UPMC Presbyterian.