Date of Award

Spring 5-8-2021

Document Type

DNP Project

Project Team Faculty Member

Dr. Cynthia Schmidt

Project Team Faculty Member

Dr. Kevin Stein

Project Team Faculty Member

Dr. Leah Baecht


Faculty of a nurse anesthesia program at a Midwestern University requested evidence of the impact a peer mentoring program could make in reducing stress levels for SRNAs. To better tailor a peer mentoring program, surveys were developed and distributed to the university’s SRNAs and to program directors of CRNA programs across the country.

Based on the literature, a survey was developed and distributed to 81 SRNAs at this university to evaluate their stress and their perceptions of the impact of peer mentoring on stress. Another survey was developed and distributed to 118 program directors to learn if they have a peer mentoring program and their perceptions of the impact on students.

For both genders in all years of the program, there was a significant increase in baseline stress from prior to anesthesia school to during anesthesia school (p <0.05). On a scale from 0-10 (with 10 being the most helpful), students rated the perceived helpfulness of a peer mentoring program with a mean score of 6.9. The majority of program directors reported successful mentoring programs with increased academic success.

Results from the literature review and surveys determined a peer mentoring program would positively impact stress experienced by SRNAs, leading to higher academic success and ultimately better patient outcomes. We met with CRNA program administrators and recommended a structured peer mentorship program be initiated. The administration indicated they plan to develop a peer mentoring program and will use our information during the design.

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