Ep 157: Why Having Nurse Anesthesia Academic Leadership Matters

We’ve stressed the importance of having CRNAs in clinical leadership positions as well as local government positions, but it’s equally valuable to have our peers in academic leadership roles as well. That’s why we’re excited to welcome Angela Mund, DNP, CRNA, back onto the show to talk about her new position as a department chair at the Medical University of South Carolina. In the first few months, she’s learned quite a bit about many different divisions and she’ll share some of that with us along with helping young CRNAs that are considering a similar path in academia.

Click the timestamps below to help you navigate through the many topics we discussed.

On This Episode:

With the doctorate requirement coming for CRNAs in a few years, the importance of education and academics continues to take priority for our profession. Both the quantity and quality of students entering nursing programs is on the rise, which is great to see.

That might also mean that over time we’ll see more people from a nurse anesthesia background moving into academic leadership positions. Much like it’s important in clinical and policy-making positions, having CRNAs providing academic leadership outside of anesthesia is hugely important.

Angela Mund, DNP, CRNA, understands this quite well. She’s one of just a few CRNAs in a department chair position. Just this summer she became the Chair, Department of Clinical Services, at the Medical University of South Carolina. It’s a position she’s worked much of her career to achieve and it’s great to see her accomplish that goal.

But there’s a lot of work to do now across multiple divisions and we wanted to discuss that with her on this podcast. Join us as we talk all about the new challenges and what excites her most about this new position. We hope it’s an insightful conversation that will give you a better understanding of why academic leadership is crucial for the future.

As you get started on the episode, keep an ear out for these topics:

  • How do you position yourself to move up in an academic setting?
  • What her responsibilities are as the head of these different divisions.
  • Why it’s important for her to know finance and budgeting in this role.
  • The learning curves that you face in academia and working with different groups.
  • Being able to teach people about CRNAs and advocating for the work we do.
  • What is the most exciting thing about this new position?
  • The biggest challenges so far
  • How her past experiences and how being a CRNA has served her well in this role.
  • What advice would she give CRNAs that want to pursue a leadership role in academia.
  • Her feelings about the doctorate requirement.

Check it out the interview at the top of the page and use the timestamps to help you navigate through the many topics we discussed. 

[4:36] – Welcome in Dr. Mund

[5:44] – Her academic background

[8:51] – What divisions she oversees

[11:30] – Learning curves

[13:45] – How did she get this role

[15:25] – Advocating for CRNAs  

[19:29] – Favorite part of this role  

[21:42] – Biggest challenges

[24:31] – How her experience as a CRNA has helped  

[28:28] – CRNAs that want to go this route

[37:40] – Impact of moving to the doctorate

[41:51] – Quality and quantity of students increasing

[47:44] – Closing message from Angie

“Find a place to work as a leader that respects your degree, respects what your needs are in your profession because if you can’t make that match, it really makes it impossible.”

– Dr. Angela Mund, Chair, Department of Clinical Services at MUSC

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