Advice on finding a job???

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    I'm a new grad that graduating from the University of Alaska Anchorage's School of Nursing and I'm am struggling to find a job! It's been 3 months since I passed my NCLEX. I didn't know that Alaska new grads would have such a difficult time. All I have been receiving are rejection emails from the hospitals. I then branched out and have been applying to clinics but have heard nothing back. I've never felt so hopeless in my life! I wish my instructors would have better prepared us for this. All my classmates who are working have had connections - either they worked there as nurse's aides or knew someone that got them a job. I unfortunately don't have those connections, so I'm stuck. I've spent all this time and money to get my nursing degree and nothing to show for it so far. Sorry that I'm venting, I'm just so stressed out! Any advice anyone?
  2. 10 Comments so far...

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    Put together a portfolio, dress in conservative professional clothing, and go walk in to a few HR Departments. Putting a face in front of someone, and making the effort to come personally may make more of an impact than just another generic application, from just another new grad. Also, make sure you research each facilty you are applying to, and modify your cover letter to their specific Mission statements, etc... When you do get an interview, look up the facility's Quality reports at the state level. How do they compare to other local hospitals? What are some of their biggest successes, and problem areas? Be prepared to comment on where you see improvements, weaknesses, etc... Research ideas to help improve on weaknesses. Even if you don't give your ideas, familiarity with QI possibilities to improve their reports will make you stand out!
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    Where did you do your clinicals? I'm guessing Providence, Alaska Regional, Native. I didn't go to school in Alaska. But I was in a similar situation. When I graduated, first I waited until I passed the NCLEX to apply. Many of my classmates already worked as techs at the hospital where we did clinicals, so they were just immediately hired as Nurse Graduates when they graduated. I wanted to have my license in hand before I applied so I took the NCLEX first. I applied through HR. I waited and waited and never heard from them. I finally decided to put on my business casual and go to the hospital to 2 of the units where I had done clinicals to just stop in, introduce myself to the nurse managers, hi-do you remember me-I did clinicals on your unit . . . and tell them how much I loved the facility and their unit, what a great experience it was and how I would love to work for them and grow my skills there, be part of their team . . . I didn't even get to the 2nd unit. I was hired on the spot by the first nurse manager I went to. She did remember me, and it so happened she needed to hire someone. It seems the wheels turn slow in HR everywhere, but if you can just break in line and go straight to the Nurse Manager, be humble, be polite, but be enthusiastic, they can call up HR and let them know they have someone their interested in. And HR can get your resume to them. Or you can also take it with you and hand it to them, but of course they still have to use HR to get all the hiring paperwork done. Seeing a live person instead of having to go through a stack of impersonal resumes can make all the difference, I think especially in Alaska where they get resumes not only from locals, but from people all over the Lower 48 that want to come to Alaska. Good luck to you. I'm sure you'll break through that wall.
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    I want to relocate to Alaska from MN...will be a new grad RN (Lord willing)...no experience...this is kinda scary. Zoinks! Any advice for me?
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    Try St. Elias Specialty Hospital in Anchorage. They were hiring new grads a few months ago. It's an LTAC (Long Term Acute Care), meaning, it is an Acute Care hospital, not a long term nursing home situation. Good place to start building your skills.
    Last edit by Grapenut on Oct 27, '11 : Reason: left something off (location)
    rotteluvr31 likes this.
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    That sounds great - I do want to do NICU or OB, though - any good suggestions for that?
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    From all the posts I've seen, and my own personal experience, it is notoriously hard to get on somewhere in a specialty without any experience. Having said that, I know that Providence occasionally posts positions for new grads that they advertise as Internships. You can go to their website and apply. I think there's a lot of competition for those positions, but they do exist. If you see one in a department you are interested in, after you have applied I would call the hospital and find out who the nurse manager for that department is, and then give them a call, let them know of your interest and maybe that will help them pick your resume out of the crowd when it comes in. They will usually give you an approximate date they are hiring for. So call back and check on it after you apply. Be the squeaky wheel. There is also Alaska Regional Hospital and Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage. I don't know if they hire new grads, but you never know. It's worth a try. The worst that can happen is they say thanks but no thanks. You might also try Fairbanks. There's a small hospital in Ketchikan also. Good luck.
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    Awesome - thanks. I did talk with someone from Providence about the internship thing, so I think that is where I am going to start.
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    Providence here in Alaska does a NICU inteRN program and they're considering hiring for a January 2012 start date. I'm part of the program now and love it! It's 2 days a week you work a 12hr shift with a preceptor, and then 1 day a week is an education day. I'm on week 6 and so far I really enjoy it!
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    Quote from libragirl924
    That sounds great - I do want to do NICU or OB, though - any good suggestions for that?

    The only advice that I would give is if you are struggling to find a position, don't hold out for a specialty. You can start somewhere and get experience while you continue to look for your dream position.


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