Missouri State University
Olivia Nwachukwu

Olivia Nwachukwu

From her first day of nursing school, Olivia Nwachukwu was set on being a CRNA

“CRNA School for me is comparable to running though mountains and valleys. The fact is that life in general is that way.”

Olivia Nwachukwu was born in Lagos, Nigeria, and grew up there until the age of 14. Her family moved to the United States in September of 1998 and found a home in Kansas City, Missouri. Kansas City has been her home since that time. 

Nwachukwu is obtaining her doctorate degree in Nurse Anesthesia. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing in 2008 from the University of Missouri in Kansas City, Missouri. She started her first year as a nurse in the telemetry unit and then moved on to the ICU for the following six years rotating between SICU, MICU and CCU.

Nwachukwu had always thought about doing anesthesia since she heard a nurse anesthetist speak in class her first day of nursing school. She knew she wanted to take the time to gain the work experience she needed to pursue CRNA School.

“It wasn’t until 2011 when I had my first child that I knew for sure I was going to follow my dreams of becoming a CRNA,” Nwachukwu said. “Even though I am always up for a challenge, I wanted to wait and enjoy motherhood before going back to school because I had heard how challenging anesthesia school could be.  I moved with my son, Jordyn, to Springfield in 2014 to begin my CRNA School journey. Since then, I have become a single parent.”

Nwachukwu said, “CRNA School for me is comparable to running though mountains and valleys. The fact is, that life in general is that way. Everyone faces his or her own unique set of challenges in CRNA School. Survival comes from strength and good support systems, especially if you remember why you chose this journey to begin with.” There is always a light at the end of every tunnel and Nwachukwu can definitely see the light. She is currently practicing as a SRNA (Student Registered Nurse Anesthetist) at Mercy hospital in Lebanon, Missouri. She said it is a great learning facility; the CRNAs are awesome and she loves doing anesthesia there.

Nwachukwu comes from a huge family who loves to travel. Travelling brings her great joy. She hopes that one day she can travel the world and work as a CRNA in many different places. She is passionate about helping in places where they have low access or shortages. She is also passionate about her energetic four-year-old son who gives her energy and keeps her going. Nwachukwu has a year and a half left of CRNA School and she eagerly anticipates graduation in June of 2017.