I'm a new RN...Please help!

  1. Hello everyone!
    I passed the NCLEX-RN on 8/8/06. I am currently looking for a job. My interests include women/infant health and psych. I would eventually like to work with women and/or children that have experienced domestic violence, who have or have had crisis pregnancies, mission work, etc. I am also interested in forensics. Before I graduated from nursing school this past May, the Dean of my school told me that every new grad should start out in Med-Surg. I am confused!! Where should I start? How common is it for new nurses or nurses in general to change units/positions?

    My family thinks that I should consider CRNA school. (I think that they are thinking $$) I, on the other hand do not see myself putting people to sleep. I like nurse-patient contact, and I like the feeling of making a real difference in someone's life. What areas of nursing are in demand that one can make a decent living BESIDES CRNA school!!???zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    Also, should my first job be at a teaching hospital (university), or at a smaller private hospital? What are some of the pros and cons of working in these environments???? One thing that turns me off about the teaching hospital is the fact that I would have to pay $50/month for parking...ouch. How common is this? In the scheme of things does this matter? Please advise!

    Thanks so much!!

    Lauren, Rn
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   Tweety
    Forget what your family thinks you should do. Follow your own heart while gently telling your family that it's your life to live.

    Personally, I think if your interest is mother/baby/women's health then that is what you should go for first. Med-Surg is usually adult focused and I can't see how this would help you reach your goals, if you're not interested in med-surg.

    Many people, especially old school people say med-surg for everyone, to get you grounded, to give you skills, teach your organization. I personally think you can acconmplish these on a peds unit or a mother/infant unit just as easily without wasting a year of your life.

    Personally I like the large teaching facilities over smaller ones for the wide variety of cases you see. Also if you're truly unhappy there are other units within the same hospital to move in. I've never worked a small facility, so can't give you any input there.

    Paying for parking at large medical facilities isn't unusual.
  4. by   jbjfan
    congrats on passing your exam! Still waiting to take mine - any advice? I just graduated from a diploma program 8/3. I'm trying to study but I don't even know what to study!
    I think you should look for the unit you want to work on. I know I have heard the same thing from some "seasoned" nurses, that all grads should start in med/surg. I think thats why so many reach burn out so quickly, they're not concentrating on what they are interrested in. Personally, I am interrested in the ED and eventually I'd love to get on a helicopter. I know I have lots to learn, so I found an intership (paid) in a critical care/trauma position. I am excited to start, because its what I'm interrested in doing, I have that "passion" for this type of medicine. I think if I had to start in med/surg, I would not be as excited to start, therefore I probably would not do as well. Follow your passion - it will drive you to continue even when things get tough. Good luck!
  5. by   nursemary9
    Hi

    Well, I've been an RN for over 40 yrs. Many years ago, I truly believed that everyone should start out on a med/Surg unit--for all the reasons Tweety gave you. HOWEVER, I,too, have seen the light.
    I really feel that this is not necessary any lomger. You can work on those types of skills and still be where you want to be.

    In the past few years i have seen countless new nurses who do just fine starting out in there specialties.

    I have always worked in a larger Hospital setting; I LOVE a teaching Hospital because you do see so many different things; things you would never get to see in a smaller institution. In your area of interest, it seems that a larger place would give you more of what you want.

    Working at several large Med Centers connected with Universities, I have always paid for parking.It's something I have just come to expect--since I live and work in a BIG city & we pay for parking all over.
    In the yesrs I did Home Health, we even paid for parking at the office.

    Good Luck

    As Tweety said, it's your life & you need to do what interests you; You won't be happy trying to please only others.

    Mary Ann
  6. by   nursemary9
    Quote from jbjfan
    congrats on passing your exam! Still waiting to take mine - any advice? I just graduated from a diploma program 8/3. I'm trying to study but I don't even know what to study!
    I think you should look for the unit you want to work on. I know I have heard the same thing from some "seasoned" nurses, that all grads should start in med/surg. I think thats why so many reach burn out so quickly, they're not concentrating on what they are interrested in. Personally, I am interrested in the ED and eventually I'd love to get on a helicopter. I know I have lots to learn, so I found an intership (paid) in a critical care/trauma position. I am excited to start, because its what I'm interrested in doing, I have that "passion" for this type of medicine. I think if I had to start in med/surg, I would not be as excited to start, therefore I probably would not do as well. Follow your passion - it will drive you to continue even when things get tough. Good luck!

    jbjfan,

    Congrats on gettiing the position ( Internship) you wanted. It sounds exciting. I agree with you regarding the burnout.

    Good Luck on your test. I know you'll do well-- The knowledge is there.
    Mary Ann
  7. by   ADNgrad2006
    Thanks to all who have responded so far. jbjfan, I e-mailed you re: "NCLEX tips!"
  8. by   jbjfan
    thanks for the NCLEX tips! I don't know when I'll be testing, wish it was next week! I feel prepared now, but I don't know how long that feeling will last. Thanks for the reply! jbjfan
  9. by   Agnus
    Start where you want. You might or migt not stay there just as you might or might not change majors when starting college. Chances are your instincts are the very best thing to follow on thils.

    There are arguments to both sides of the med surg advice. This one is up to you follow your heart and gut instinct. Large or small hospital. universtiy or no follow your heart and gut. One can not make gereralities about the type of hospital simply because even within the same catagory they are not the same. And your nature and temperment (translate gut feeling) play a role in what type of hospital is best for you at this time.
  10. by   santhony44
    I worked for a teaching hospital for 13 years. You definitely get a great variety of experience, usually more so than at a private facility. You also have the opportunity to learn more, because attending physicians in teaching hospitals frequently love to teach and don't care if you're student, resident, nurse, or clerk for that matter. You can also listen in to rounds and may have the chance to attend educational programs like Grand Rounds.

    There are also more docs available. The flip side is, there are more docs to get in your way, and the charts you need may be in one of 15 different places and harder to access. Private docs go on rounds in the hospital and are trying to get in and out as quickly as possible. Residents/attendings often have no place else they need to go and take their time.

    In a teaching hospital, you will eventually find that you are also contributing to the educations of the students and residents. You will learn from them, they will learn from you.

    CRNA's do tend to make lots of $$ and that's great, but you really need to really want to do that job to get through the pretty awful training and then to do the job well. Personally, I want the person who puts me to sleep to have a passion for doing their job and doing it well! (Awful training in terms of the amount of time, effort, etc. required- it's gruelling).

    One of the great things about nursing is that you can change your mind and direction at just about any time. You can do maternal/child for a year or two or ten and then go into something totally different, as you change and learn and grow as a person and a nurse. If you try something that you loved in school but find you don't enjoy as a nurse, you can try something different. If you love what your job entails but hate the facility, you can go somewhere else. Just don't burn any bridges behind you. You never know who you might meet down the road!
  11. by   nedanurse
    Hey CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am a new nurse 1yr. I started out on a Cardiac Surgery Unit at a teaching hospital. I really love it. It was hard at first, but i think all of my class mates had a hard time at first. the first 6 months sucks everywhere. It is all learning how to be a nurse and being comfortable signing RN after your name ( that was crazy for me the first 6 months.) You will be great and it will all turn out. Good luck and hope things work out
  12. by   ADNgrad2006
    You guys are great!!!! It means so much to have such great input!!! I hope that some day I can be of use to someone that feels like I do one day!! This website is an awesome resource!!!!!

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