Taking 6 months off nursing...right after graduation? - page 2

Hi everyone, So traveling for 6 months after graduation has been the plan since before I started nursing school, but I'm terrified I'm going to be 100% out of luck finding a job when I get back.... Read More

  1. by   turnforthenurse
    Quote from BA_anthropology
    Yes, that's the plan. Does it make any difference for finding a job when I get back?
    You need to be licensed in the state you plan to practice in. Just take the NCLEX ASAP, when you feel ready. Don't wait too long. You need to take it while the information in your mind is still fresh - the longer you wait post-graduation, the more likely you are to fail your first time.

    And unfortunately for some new grads, it can take MONTHS to find a job, yet they are still able to find work.

    As for working on a military post, they usually want experienced nurses, at least from my experience. I graduated in December 2010 with my BSN (and I lived in Ohio at the time) and then in May I moved to Texas. I applied to hospitals in my area and searched USA Jobs, too. I couldn't find any openings for clinics, but for the hospital on post they wanted at least 2 years of experience. A nurse I work with lived in Germany for quite some time and she was able to find work overseas, but she had to have experience and she told me finding a job is tough even over there for nurses. I'm not trying to tell you that you are SOL, I'm just warning you. It's possible to get a job, but from what I have heard and my experience, you need some experience under your belt.
  2. by   not.done.yet
    Your biggest risk is going to be in becoming an "old" new grad - which many here are suffering from due to how long it is taking to find that important first job. Once you cross that barrier, getting internships and getting hired becomes even more difficult. You are wise to weigh this out ahead of time. Personally I think it is a terrible idea in terms of finding work but a lovely idea in all other respects. Finding work in Italy might be ideal, but honestly I wonder how easy that will be to do without any experience.
  3. by   jessrn78
    I waited 6 months after graduation to look for a job. I just needed the break. I spoke with a recruiter prior to making my decision and she flat out said there would probably be more opportunities for me AFTER I am licensed. (She some some specialties at her hospital will hire new grads but will only look at their apps if they are licensed.) When I did start to apply, it took a couple of weeks, but, got the call in the area I wanted. I interviewed on Friday, got offered the job on Monday. Was I in the pool with newer grads? Yep. But the difference between them and me? I had a shiny license in my pocket and could start right away!!! I started with 2 brand new graduates who were interns for 6 weeks while they took boards. I'm now considered more senior than them! Sometimes being an "old, new" grad has it's advantages!! Take your boards, do what you need to do, and start applying a month or so before you come back.

    As far as losing skills in 6 months, to be honest, once I started working I was like - did I even learn any skills???? None of the things they focused on in school seemed to apply to the real world. You can teach catheter insertion all day on a dummy but until you are I&O cathing a 16 week old or placing a Foley in a 100 year old, you will never really know how to do those skills. Your not going to forget how to turn a patient, how to put a patient on bedpan, etc in 6 months!!! Plus, at least in my area, you go through a whole orientation process where the hospital teaches you skills the way THEY want you to do them.

    I wouldn't worry!
  4. by   netglow
    Seriously, there are not enough jobs to go around. If you have important things to do you should do them. See if you can find work, sure! But consider that with the economy and unfriendly facility hiring practices at this time, you would not want to put too much effort where it will likely gain you little if you have more important things that should take priority. Go to Italy!!! It's that or spending that same time sitting at your laptop trolling for nursing jobs. I'd have rather been in Italy.

    Take everything a nursing instructor says with a grain of salt. If that instructor can get you a job, then great!!! If they cannot, then well... Here is the fact. Nursing colleges tend to make you think you can do "anything" through most of your college time, it's all positive - that is until you are about to graduate, then they start to let you know that it will be very tough to find work as a nurse. That is about when you realize you need to just live your life, and that nobody was very honest with you from your college from the getgo.
  5. by   fromtheseaRN
    not sure about CT, but it's been taking new grads about 6 months to find jobs in AZ. and the new grad programs here accept new grads up to 12 months post graduation.
    i would go for it, but take your NCLEX first.
    good luck!
  6. by   ICU_RN2
    I had a friend that graduated in May and didn't even start looking for a job until Sept...she took the summer off to travel as well. It can be done.
  7. by   Good Morning, Gil
    Isn't there a hospital there for civilian ex-pats where you could work? Definitely take your nclex prior to leaving. Being overseas would definitely put you in a good position for volunteer nursing in needy, rural areas. That would definitely involve more than taking BP's, and you'd be helping people that really need it. That would only work if A). you wanted to do that, and B). your financial situation allowed you to work for free.
  8. by   noahsmama
    Quote from ExpatHopeful
    I agree about taking the NCLEX right away while your knowledge is fresh. You do realize that it takes some time for the paperwork to be sorted out before you sit the test though, right? I graduated in mid May and the earliest anyone in my cohort took the NCLEX was the first week of July.
    This must vary somewhat from one nursing school to the next. I graduated on May 28, took the NCLEX on June 11, and my license was issued on June 18 (of 2008, in California). But you do make a good point -- the OP should check with her school to find out how much of a lag to expect.
  9. by   StarryEyed, RN
    I would add another vote to taking nclex before you leave. That said, if I had known it would take me 8-10 months after graduation to find an RN job I definitely would've traveled somewhere far.
  10. by   BA_anthropology
    Okay, thanks for all the suggestions and feedback everyone!

    I'm still not 100% sure what the next best thing to do is. Hopefully, something will pan out with getting experience over there (thanks for USA jobs suggestion-- I have looked there before, but all job listings I've seen ask for 1 year experience). It's good to know that other people have done something similar...or that there's hope for me to get a job when I get back!
  11. by   RNMom2010
    I didn't work for a bit over 5 months after I graduated. I took NCLEX 2 months after graduation, then had my son and spent some time being a stay at home mom. Enjoy life. Nursing is not everything. If you can afford it, enjoy every moment you can not working!!