Tucson Medical Center - New Grad Pay?

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    Hi there! I just graduated here in the San Francisco Bay Area and I'm having a tough time finding work. The market is saturated with new grads and I'm picky...I want NICU or L&D...so I'm working with a head hunter. She's got me a phone interview with the recruiter from Tucson Medical Center for a new grad position in the NICU. They're offering a pretty sweet relocation package but I'm more concerned about the day in and out. New grads in my area are starting out at $45 base pay with another 15% diff! I know the cost of living would be better in AZ but I'm trying to figure out if the drop in pay would be worth it. If we move out of state my hubby would have to try and find work until he established residency before he can go back to school for his teaching credential without paying out of state fees. Any input or advice would be appreciated! I have the telephone interview this afternoon!:innerconf
    PACIFICWHALES likes this.

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  3. 35 Comments...

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    If I had to take a wild guess......I'd say its nowhere near close to SF pay. I started at $26.45 base pay in Arizona.

    Good luck
    dancingdoula likes this.
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    I suggest you check out some of the cost of living calculators you can find on the internet. This will help you to appriciate the differences you will find between a place like SF & Tucson.
    Just a quick google & I found this site...hope it helps!
    rnfostermom likes this.
  6. 0
    It's probably going to be a bit less than $26/hour for a new grad at TMC. I wouldn't be concerned about the difference in hourly wages for AZ v. San Fran, though. The difference in housing costs is extreme and comprises that gap. I recall a study somewhere here on Allnurses indexed nursing wages to cost of living per state. Arizona came out nicely in that survey.

    Here's something to consider, though: California residents typically pay far less for in-state tuition at state universities compared to those in AZ. Even if you wait and get in-state residency in AZ, I imagine your husband's tuition may be considerably more in AZ compared to CA. That is something to consider. For example, in-state tuition and fees for a full-time student at the University of Arizona in Tucson is almost $6000/year for undergraduates. Graduate level tuition is much more than undergrad, as well.
  7. 1
    I'd be curious to know what TMC is offering. I doubt, seriously, that it's close to what Jessy is making in Yuma.

    TMC is a dump, BTW. Although the NICU and L&D dept are fine.
    Valerie Salva likes this.
  8. 1
    Thanks for your input guys... The phone interview went well and they want to do another one next week with the hiring manager but the pay is lousy. They're offering $24 per hour for new grads plus a 17% night shift diff. Problem is that for a similar position 20 minutes from me, I would be making about $90,000 per year compared to $50,000 per year at TMC. Even with the cost of living/housing index it wouldn't be a smart move... so long as I can find SOMETHING here... but even LTC starts new grads out at $32 base pay. I just don't understand why in so many place throughout the country they are willing to pay ridiculous sign on bonuses but the hourly rate sucks. Hospitals wouldn't be so desperate for nurses if they would all just pay us what we're worth! Not to mention institute mandatory staffing ratios like we have here in Cali. You nurses who work without these ratios are amazing, true heros!
    PACIFICWHALES likes this.
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    Well, $24 is substandard-that's why that place is a dump. But the difference between hospitals is only a few dollars.

    Would you be buying a house here or renting? And you said you were having a hard time finding work in SF?
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    Renting for at least the next 2 years. Yes, the bay area is impacted. I did get an interview here for a position that had 156 applicants but I'm still waiting to hear. I'm still looking here first just because the cost and stress of moving to another area compounds the decrease in pay scale... I apologize if I sound like a snob, it just occured to me that I'm coming off that way. I just want to find a decent community to raise my family in, a job I love with awesome pay, in place I can afford to live comfortably. I'm probably just fantasizing about my own utopia but if it exists, I'll find it!!! Thanks for your input everybody!
    PACIFICWHALES likes this.
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    I hate to say it but most of the hospitals in Phoenix and surrounding areas pay about $24-25/hr for new grads. Shift dif is usually 20% though. This would have been okay pay a couple of years ago, but after the housing rush two years ago, housing costs have skyrocketed, and the pay has not kept up with the cost of living. Prices are starting to drop considerably if you're planning on buying, but they are still a lot higher than they were three to four years ago. If you're already settled in the Bay Area you might want to just stay put. L&D and NICU jobs are difficult to come by here as well, we're also saturated with new grads (I'm one of them ). A lot of my classmates thought that they could wait until after graduation to find jobs because nurses are so in demand. Well, experienced nurses may be in demand, new grad nurses are a dime a dozen. I'm one of the only people I graduated with who got the job I wanted, mainly because I had externed in it my last year of nursing school.
    Good luck in whatever you decide and congrats graduating!!
    dancingdoula likes this.
  12. 0
    Quote from cardiacRN2006
    Well, $24 is substandard-that's why that place is a dump. But the difference between hospitals is only a few dollars.
    I thought only med/surg at TMC is like a dump, and specialty units are ok. Have you changed your opinion on this?

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