Got accepted into VA, Quit current job?

  1. 1
    hello,

    ever since i began my very first clinical at the va, i just knew that was the place for me. i absolutely enjoy the environment, the nurses, and especially the veteran patients. i've had two later clinicals at the va during the remaining of my bsn program. i also worked there for a couple of months as a student nurse technician (snt), but must've made such a great impression that i've been selected for the inpatient position! i am super excited!

    so, my question is whether or not i should quit my current job or just take it down to prn. it's a night shift in which i'm working 2-3 nights per week (i'm hired only part time) and i've worked there only for a month. it's for an addiction and recovery center, so it's basically just a "cushiony" job as it does not advance any of my nursing skills except for brief assessments.

    i've spoken to a few people and half say to just keep it as prn and only take one shift a month or when i would like a little extra cash (holidays, etc.). while others say that i'll be so set at the va that i shouldn't even bother with the extra stress and the little extra money isn't going to really make a difference.

    i am so excited that i got into the va!!!! i didn't need to do my physical since i just had it done for my snt position, i completed my fingerprints, now just waiting to get the e-mail to do the e-qip (which i've heard was a pain???). i already have my start orientation date. so, when should i submit a letter to my current employer about whichever decision i'll be making (quit or prn)?

    thank you everyone and i enjoy reading everyone's current experience with the different vas on here!
    anie10 likes this.
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  3. 16 Comments so far...

  4. 1
    I never quit any jobs these days. I always ask to be put on prn status. I feel like just in case things don't work out at the new job I will have something to fall back on. I am sure everything will work out great for you at the VA. But just in case.......... Congratulations on your new VA job!!!!!
    MystyqueOne likes this.
  5. 2
    Congratulations on your new home however do not quit your current job! I would start communicating to them and letting them know what is happening as your time with them is winding down however you still have a little ways to go.

    You said the magic word "waiting for E-quip email." Equip & VetPro are processes that have a tendancy to get dragged out into weeks and months. Most VA's have 2 orientations a month so they will have no problem pushing your date back. Sometimes they will give you 120-day "temp privledges" and allow you to start working while you are processed but I would not bank on that.

    Good luck and please keep us updated as you progress. The things you can do to expedite the process is churn & burn any paperwork or computer stuff that comes your way. Be prepared to list everywhere you have worked & lived since College with addresses, phone #'s and someone who can verify.

    You will want to make sure your professional references' are checking their mailbox and know to get the form back ASAP also faxing/emailing you a copy(things have a habit of getting lost in the mail).
    kalevra and MystyqueOne like this.
  6. 1
    Quote from 79tango
    congratulations on your new home however do not quit your current job! i would start communicating to them and letting them know what is happening as your time with them is winding down however you still have a little ways to go.

    you said the magic word "waiting for e-quip email." equip & vetpro are processes that have a tendancy to get dragged out into weeks and months. most va's have 2 orientations a month so they will have no problem pushing your date back. sometimes they will give you 120-day "temp privledges" and allow you to start working while you are processed but i would not bank on that.

    good luck and please keep us updated as you progress. the things you can do to expedite the process is churn & burn any paperwork or computer stuff that comes your way. be prepared to list everywhere you have worked & lived since college with addresses, phone #'s and someone who can verify.

    you will want to make sure your professional references' are checking their mailbox and know to get the form back asap also faxing/emailing you a copy(things have a habit of getting lost in the mail).

    i forgot to mention that the va already has my vetpro and 4 letters of recommendation. i never had to do an interview because i'm known so well around there during my student clinicals. i've already worked under the nurse manager in which i was hired to work with again. i've done some great improvements with a couple of different new innovations for the va throughout my time as a nursing student. when i received my fingerprints, they said it would be about 10-14 days and then i'll get the e-qip email. i wish i could just do the e-qip now, while i'm waiting.

    when you say to be ready to put in all my places of employment since college, do you mean since i graduated nursing school? or do you mean from college i had out of high school? wow, if i have to go all the way back to when i very first began working ever, i highly doubt i'm going to remember everything from that many years ago.....

    if i do have to go back to my very first place of employment, what do i do about those companies that the person of contact is no longer availalbe or the company went bankrupt (i've had that happen)?

    they are trying to put me in for november 22, but they said it would most likely be december 5. so, should i give my current job a "prn" letter around the 14th if i start the 22nd or around the 21st if i start the 5th? looks like they are trying to move me in there pretty quickly. also, what should i write in my letter to put me back to prn for my current job? then, if i go prn, how long should i keep that status until i finally decide to just quit? i know the va has a 2 year probation, so i highly doubt i will keep the prn position for that long. i think they would really appreciate my prn status since i've made some improvements to their mars (at my current job) that not everyone is familiar with.... ugh (it's such a pain, though).

    thank you!!! i just can't wait!!!!

    one last question, what exactly happens during the 6 month "training" after the 1-day orientation? i heard i'm 1-on-1 with another rn? can anyone give me their experiences with that?

    thanks!
    anie10 likes this.
  7. 1
    Congrats.

    These days, nurses are divided into the "haves" and the "have nots" insofar as the quality of their employers... you're one of the "haves."
    MystyqueOne likes this.
  8. 1
    Quote from ♪♫ in my ♥
    congrats.

    these days, nurses are divided into the "haves" and the "have nots" insofar as the quality of their employers... you're one of the "haves."
    whoo, hooo, then i feel tremendously blessed!!!!

    i feel there are so many great opportunities for me at the va. i'm not a veteran, myself, but i grew up with my dad being a marine corps, so i've heard all the stories of the vietnam war and such. these veterans have been through h*ll and back and have seen it all, so i want to be that person with the bright smile there to assist in their most all healthcare and psychosocial needs. i'm so excited and devoted to be the best i can be for these patients that put everything up for everyone else!
    [color=#483d8b]
    [color=#483d8b]thank you to referring to me as a "haves" as that made me very very special.
    anie10 likes this.
  9. 0
    Congrats!!

    I would love to work in the VA system.
  10. 0
    FYI...from experience: If you are absolutely sure you will do your orientation on xx date, give your notice two weeks in advance. If possible, once you do that, let your current manager know that you'd like to stay PRN because 1) you value your time there and 2) because you want to make sure they have someone during the transition and beyond, if needed. Once you get to the VA, remember, you'll need to be trained before you can do any OT there (if your facility is even approving it). You most likely will not work weekends either until you are off orientation. Also, remember you orient on every shift, since the VA makes certain you understand the differences between all shifts in your unit. As an RN, your probationary period is two years from your date of boarding. I had to wait 10 months from the date of hire to get it. It is also required for NNEI, EDRP and other VA programs. As others have mentioned, the VA has wonderful programs for nurses but remember, your mileage may vary. Good luck! I am in my 4th year with the VA, and despite all the bureaucracy, I'm a lot farther than I'd have been in the private sector. It was the best move I ever made.
  11. 0
    Quote from 1studentnurse
    fyi...from experience: if you are absolutely sure you will do your orientation on xx date, give your notice two weeks in advance. if possible, once you do that, let your current manager know that you'd like to stay prn because 1) you value your time there and 2) because you want to make sure they have someone during the transition and beyond, if needed. once you get to the va, remember, you'll need to be trained before you can do any ot there (if your facility is even approving it). you most likely will not work weekends either until you are off orientation. also, remember you orient on every shift, since the va makes certain you understand the differences between all shifts in your unit. as an rn, your probationary period is two years from your date of boarding. i had to wait 10 months from the date of hire to get it. it is also required for nnei, edrp and other va programs. as others have mentioned, the va has wonderful programs for nurses but remember, your mileage may vary. good luck! i am in my 4th year with the va, and despite all the bureaucracy, i'm a lot farther than i'd have been in the private sector. it was the best move i ever made.

    thank you very much for all of this information. i've learned so much from you, especially regarding rotating through the shifts so i can learn the differences. yes, i know my exact orientation date.... i was planning on going in and speaking with my current manager to let them know i will go prn. they have plenty of rns there, anyhow. what exactly do you mean by that it took you 10 months to get your boarding? does that mean after your orientation?

    thanks so much!
  12. 2
    Congrats!! I'm in the same boat. Just found out I got a spot at the VA. I had the same feeling- knew it was for me from the moment I precepted there. I just love the population. Some of my classmates couldn't stand the facility. IMHO, what the VA lacked in modern equipment (on the floor I was on at least) they made up for with great, highly qualified nurses and really good patient ratios.

    The VA system is great- very secure, wonderful benefits, retirement that can't be beat. I would recommend putting in your 2 week notice but seeing if you can stay PRN. I don't know if all VA's have nurses working 8 hr shifts... but that is the only barrier I could potentially see to staying PRN at your current job.

    Best of luck!!!!
    anie10 and MystyqueOne like this.


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