I was a new grad about 4 yrs ago, and took a position at a community hospital IMCU/CCU. The CCU is a 12 bed unit that takes all critical pts that require pressors or intubation. This was the first time the unit has ever taken a new grad with no experience onto the floor. They hired 3 new grads that first year and I am the only one who stayed with CCU.
My orientation included: 3 months on the ortho floor, just to get a feel for the computer system and gain some basic skills (since I did 6 wk clinical at this hospital, computer system was easy). After 3 months I started on my unit. That orientation incuded ECCO (from AACN), 2 class days (with unit educator which discussed EKG, Meds, and Labs, etc), and on floor with preceptor 2 days per week, this lasted for 3 months also. Then i went to nights and got 1-2 weeks orientation to learn night time routines. Nights is the best for new nurses cause I feel it gives you more time to read through pts charts completely and we have an APRN on some nights who take time to educate. Also, there are less people around so you have more chances to be involved during procedures and codes.
With all that orientation, I still feel for me the best way I learned and grew was to be hands on. My advice to you is get involved in all the codes and ask a lot of quetions. I ask doctors why they ordered certain meds or labs, and most have no problems educating. I also would go home and research a disease or diagnosis that I might have encountered that day. The other RNs are also get resources to get information from and most are willing to help out.
Good luck with your new adventure and just remember to continue to educate yourself. Studing doesn't stop just cause your not in school any more.