Part time for new grad?

  1. I apologize in advance if this has been asked before and if this is a rather naive question:

    Is it possible for a new grad to work part time from the beginning, specifically in a hospital setting? Are all orientations and/or internships full time? If they are all full time, is it possible to go to part time immediately after the orientation/internship is completed? I'm sure practices vary from hospital to hospital, but I'm trying to get an idea.

    What do most hospitals mean by "part time"? One or two 12-hour shifts a week, 5 four-hour shifts a week, or something else?

    Thanks!
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   ArleneG
    I went to work part-time right out of school. The orientation however, was 40 hours a week. I am scheduled for one shift per week plus every other weekend. I pick up extra shifts as I wish. There were others that I graduated with that also work part time. I know they also oriented at 40 hours per week. (Orientation was for 4 weeks in my unit.) Check around, there are a lot of opportunities and you will probably find something that fits your situation.
  4. by   RN-PA
    Dianacs, I agree with all that ArleneG said. You can pretty much "write your own ticket" as far as your schedule in most facilities since the need for nurses is so great.

    I've heard that most orientations are full-time for a few weeks at least. It seems like it'd be best for continuity's sake to be orienting day after day so what you learn stays with you and is reinforced each day. As a new grad, I would suggest working full-time for as long as you can, again, so you get into a routine and by repetition and practice, your days will be more organized and all you're learning becomes more natural. I've worked with new grads who've gone part-time right away, however, and they seem to do fine. For me, it took a year of full-time working to feel fairly competent and comfortable-- but that could just be me!

    At our hospital, "full-timers" work 8 or 12 hour shifts, 36 to 40 hours/week; "Reular part-timers" must work at least 40 hours/2 weeks (5 days/pay period) in order to receive sick and vacation pay. Less than that is called "Part-time" which is your status if you work less than 40 hours/2 weeks, and the last level is "Casual", and they work as much as they want, but must pick up one week day and one weekend day shift/month. Lots of options are available and I wish you all the best in your career!
  5. by   Zee_RN
    I just spoke with a new grad (well, soon-to-be) today. She wants to work in the Emergency Department which may be possible. However, she's thinking of working part-time. Personally, I don't think you can really develop competence working part-time as a new grad in a critical area like the E.D....at least not for a long time. We would also ask the individual to orient on a full-time basis. I'm not saying it can't be done. But I'd be hesitant. I think for YOUR comfort level and your patient's safety, try full-time for a while if you can swing it; at least six months.

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