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MHS - Cardiovascular Perfusion

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Surgeons don’t perform open heart surgery alone. Cardiovascular perfusionists are essential members of the support team who make this and other types of life-saving procedures possible.

Program Overview

We’ll teach you to operate the equipment perfusionists use to support or replace a patient’s heart and lung functions during cardiac surgery and to monitor vital cardiopulmonary signs to keep the patient stable. You’ll also learn to administer the appropriate medications and anesthesia during surgery. 

Our program is one of only eight in the nation that offers graduate-level training in this profession. As cardiovascular disease becomes increasingly common, the employment opportunities in this field continue to expand, and we prepare you to enter the workforce with a competitive advantage. 

A strong sense of responsibility and the capacity to work effectively with other professionals in a high-pressure environment are essential qualities of successful cardiovascular perfusionists. You’ll acquire both during group activities and clinical work. Plus, you’ll learn in our technologically sophisticated Center for Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences. 

Curriculum and Requirements

MHS in Cardiovascular Perfusion Curriculum

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
Fall SemesterCredits
College-based didactic course work:  
PA 535 Disease Mechanisms 4
PR 500 Theoretical Foundations of Cardiovascular Perfusion 2
PR 502 Systems Anatomy and Physiology I 3
PR 508 Extracorporeal Circuitry and Laboratory I 1
PR 516 Physiologic Monitoring 4
Spring Semester
PR 503 Systems Anatomy and Physiology II 3
PR 506 Pharmacologic Intervention in Cardiovascular Perfusion 4
PR 509 Extracorporeal Circuitry and Lab II 1
PR 510 Surgical Techniques 2
PR 512 Pediatric Perfusion 4
Second Year
Summer Semester
Hospital-based clinical training session:  
PR 600 Clinical Practicum I 5
PR 520 Research Methods in Cardiovascular Perfusion 2
Fall Semester
PR 602 Clinical Practicum II 5
PR 522 Research Methods in CV Perfusion II 2
Spring Semester
PR 604 Clinical Practicum III 5
PR 514 Special Topics in Cardiovascular Perfusion 2
 Total Credits49

During the first two didactic semesters, students are introduced to the operating room environment by weekly orientation sessions in one of several affiliated hospitals. Students are required to join the American Society of Extracorporeal Technology and maintain student membership for the duration of the program.

Failure to maintain a 3.0 minimum GPA in all didactic and clinical semesters will result in automatic dismissal from the program. Students must also successfully complete all clinical practicums to graduate from the program.

Additional course details
Explore descriptions, schedule and instructor information using the Course Finder tool.

Admissions Requirements

To apply to the cardiovascular perfusion program, a baccalaureate degree in science or health-related discipline from a regionally accredited American or Canadian college or university is required. Please see below for additional admission requirements. 

Cardiovascular Perfusion Program Application

All application materials must be sent to the Office of Graduate Admissions at:

Quinnipiac University
Office of Graduate Admissions NH-GRD
275 Mount Carmel Avenue
Hamden, CT 06518

Applications are reviewed once all of the required materials have been received. It is your responsibility to ensure that missing documents are received prior to the stated admissions deadline. The Office of Graduate Admissions is not responsible for materials sent to other offices or personnel. 

Application Start Date

The cardiovascular perfusion program begins only in the fall semester. The program is on a rolling admission schedule and applications are accepted throughout the year.

Application Deadline

The application deadline is Feb. 1. An interview with the program director is required prior to a decision of admission. Decisions will be made individually as an application becomes complete. Final decisions will be made by the program director, with input from the medical director and the Perfusion Advisory Council, an organization made up of one certified clinical perfusionist (clinical instructor or department chief) from each of the hospitals that has a clinical affiliation agreement with Quinnipiac. 

Admission Requirements

In evaluating applications, the Committee on Admissions places heavy emphasis on previous academic achievement and recommendations from perfusionists and cardiac surgeons.

In order to be considered for admission to the cardiovascular perfusion program, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or Canada.
  • Applicants must have a minimum undergraduate cumulative GPA of 3.0
  • Successful completion of the following science courses: 
    • Two semesters of basic biology (with labs) 
    • Two semesters of anatomy and physiology (with labs)
    • One semester of microbiology (with lab)
    • Two semesters of chemistry (with labs)
    • one semester of physics (with lab)
    • one semester of college-level mathematics (college algebra or calculus)

    Prerequisites must be taken on-campus from a regionally accredited institution in the United States or Canada. Science prerequisite courses taken at a four-year college or university are preferred.

  • Two years of health care work experience is required. Preference is given to candidates who have experience in critical care areas such as ICU, CCU, ER and OR.
  • Certification in Basic Life Support from the American Heart Association

Applications will be ranked based on a strong academic record, experience in a relevant clinical area, perceived ability to complete a challenging didactic and clinical program and the strength of professional recommendations.

Required Documents

  • Application: Complete the information required on the application form.    
  • Fee:  You will be asked to include a non-refundable application fee of $45 by credit or debit card when submitting your application. Do not send cash or check.
  • Official Transcripts: It is your responsibility to request official transcripts from ALL undergraduate, graduate and professional schools attended (including part-time and summer study). If you received transfer credit from another institution, it is still necessary to have an official transcript sent from the original university. These transcripts must be provided to Quinnipiac University in a sealed envelope or sent electronically to
  • Letters of Recommendation: You must have two professional references submitted on your behalf.  You will be required to enter your recommenders' contact information on the application.  
  • Letter of Intent: You will be asked to include a letter of intent discussing why you wish to pursue the cardiovascular perfusion program and how a degree from Quinnipiac will assist you in your career goals.     
  • Resume: You will be asked to include an up-to-date resume.    
  • Professional Licenses/Certificates (Optional): You will be able to upload any professional licenses or certificates when completing your application or from your student portal after submitting your application.
  • GRE exam: not required.
  • English ProficiencyTOEFL or IELTS Exam scores are required if you are an applicant from a non-English speaking country.    

If you're considering one of Quinnipiac's outstanding graduate programs, you're on your way to joining a graduate community committed to academic excellence and professional preparation at the highest level.