...Sooooo.....it's obvious we're getting all kinds of advice thrown at us from different angles, solicited and otherwise. I'm at the point where I remain open to any and all suggestions, but I'm pretty sure that what it comes down to (when landing a job as a new grad) is being in the right place, at the right time, with the right person. I have applied to 100+ jobs since May 2010, and have had 3 interviews (2 of which were for the same position) and I can say with certainty that 98% of it is "meshing well" with the interviewer(s). I also have some life experience to back that up
Don't let anyone tell you "if you really wanted a job, you would [insert here what worked for them]..." It's hard because I am constantly second-guessing myself and wondering if I'm too weak, stupid, lazy, or incompetent to be a nurse. Comments like that tend to reinforce my insecurities but I found that it helps to take a deep breath, be genuinely
happy for that person and simply add it to your bag of tricks to use while applying for jobs. And hey - if those folks are so proactive and awesome, maybe they can get us a job on their unit too!