New Grad needs advice

  1. I'm sorry. I'm still chuckling over the idea that its more violent here. That's sure stereotyping! I've lived in Florida for 13 years and my children haven't been warped too badly... yet.

    In any case, I've worked with some excellent Canadian nurses and would welcome you. Conditions in my hospital are just as bad/good as they seem to be across the nation. I live in the center of the state: the pay is lower but so is the cost of living so that's something to consider when you choose locations. Many hospitals here are offering sign on bonuses and travel expenses so I'd recommend shopping for a position. Where I work its $10,000. for RNs for a 3 year contract paid in 3 installments.

    Word of advice: starting out in nursing is stressful enough. Get some basic experience where you are before you think of moving. This is not financial utopia so don't come here thinking it'll be all sunshine and roses. Come with eyes wide open and take the posts of those who are disillusioned seriously: we all started out bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at one time. If things were great we wouldn't need to come to this BB to complain. Take your time in deciding but know that you'll be welcome if and when you decide to make the move.

    I am glad to hear about how violent my environment is, though. I guess I'll have to start locking my doors at night now
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   JMP
    Canadians often get the wrong idea. Often they make the assumption that our cultures are the same. While they share some things- many are not shared. It is not my opinion- however it is a matter of simple fact. It is not meant as a slight towards Florida or anyone who lives there.
    It is the truth however, that in Canada we do not have capital punishment, we do not have the right (?) to bear arms, people do not carry weapons ( I know that not all americans do, but no canadians do, except police officers) and we have very low violent crime statistics compared to our neighbours to the south.
    ALL canadians have equal and fair access to health care. I could go on but I think you get the point. It is impossible not to stereotype in this type of situation.
    Having and raising children is serious business and I was merely pointing out to take that factor into light when changing cultures. I think you forgot to mention the union business- which is a big issue. These things all have to be considered.
    We here in southern Canada are very "americanized" by TV and movies- however, the opposite is not true. Now before you accuse me of stereotyping...most (not all) but most Americans are not Canadianized- they don't see our movies and watch our news etc..the way we see yours. And if you have not been to Canada- there is a big difference. Not bad- but different.
    I think the States are great- but living there is a matter I would take very seriously if I had three small babies. That is my point.
    JMP
  4. by   Lauryn
    Hi...now don't eat me alive!
    I need some advice. I am planning on moving from Ontario, Canada, to Florida for my first nursing position. My family is still quite young and my husband and I wish to settle there before they are older. They are 5, 3, and 2 months. Do you have any advice or (good or bad) about making such a move to a new country. I am hoping to work on a med/surg ward in the Daytona area. I am definatly going to be quite nervous about starting off in states...but I have to start somewhere. I appreciate any input you can give me.
  5. by   JMP
    Hi Lauren
    As a recent grad myself I am wondering why you are going to the states- is it for full time work? Have you written the NCLEX- it is much different from the CNO exam we write here in Ontario. You probally know all of this- but I went for some interviews- most in the South West section of the US. Be aware that unlike here, MOST hospitals - esp. in FLorida are NOT UNIONED. Check into manditory overtime. Don't get yourself into that kind of situation- if you can avoid it.
    ALso- check and see how long your orientation will be- get assurance you will not be put in charge after 2 weeks- the shortage is so bad in the US I have heard stories about these things happening.
    Do you have your degree? If not, the states offers good opportunites for your degree with pay, and of course, sign on bonuses.
    Be very aware that we are different cultures- the US is a much more violent place and think that over carefully when thinking about taking small children into that enviroment. And what about your husband- if he does not have a degree- what will he do? My husband does have a degree and even will that he was not assured of any jobs- unless of course your husband has a degree in computer sience- then you are laughing.
    Think if over carefully! Me? Well after careful thought I am staying here for now. I have a job at a good teaching hospital, working on my degree and although tempted, deciding for now to stay put.
    Good luck. JMP
  6. by   canoehead
    Hi, I am a Canadian nurse working in Maine. I don't find a big difference in cultures, I am living in a small town and all the negative things I have heard about "damn Yanks" have turned out not to be true. Everyone is friendly and willing to help you find the best grocery store, mechanic etc. If I was to move back today the Canadian hospital would have to almost double my hourly pay to match up with the decreased cost of living and exchange rate.

    If you are going into the USA on a Visa it is easier to live near a Canadian border as the immigration guys require that you leave the country and return to renew it. I even went to the airport and tried to renew and they had to see the plane ticket, would not save me the trip to New Brunswick.

    If you want to live closer to home northern hospitals all over Maine have openings, and the conditions seem excellent compared to what I hear on this BB. My hospital has 3-4 pts/nurse on days, 5-6 on nights, no mandatory OT, but lots of voluntary OT if you want it. We are about on par with other hospitals in Maine, and I know NH, and MA are in need too. Hope this helps.

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