New Grad Army Nurse Question
- 0May 25, '11 by whitecat5000So I've been reading the boards for a bit and I can't seem to find what I'm looking for, so I thought I'd ask!
I'm putting together my packet for the Army Board in November 2011 and I've been told that it's extremely competitive.
Is there anything I can do to make myself stand out with my packet and have a greater chance of being chosen?
My recruiter said that since I am a new grad and don't have experience, it's harder for me than for others who are applying with experience.
- 0May 25, '11 by SoldierNurse22Unfortunately, aside from doing what ImThatGuy just suggested, there's very little you can do. It is extremely competitive and there's just no way for you to beef up your application enough for you to compare to those with years and years of experience. Keep your fingers crossed--new grads DO get in...it's just harder!
- 0May 25, '11 by New1LTGet experience is the main thing. And every year is definitely different than the year before. The FY 2010 board was competitive because the year before yielded a lot of commissions through several boards. FY 2011 only held one board. What is needed for that FY depends on how many nurses actually stay in the Army. So the only people that know this are the ones planning troop census. So, make yourself more appealing than the next. Experience, good references, good motivation and perseverance. And like allarmy stated, new grads do get in and the one that puts together a more appealing packet gets commissioned. Good luck and be ready for an emotional roller coaster!!
- 0Quote from oaktown2This may be a dumb question, but I'll ask anyway. Why exactly would a letter from a state senator be all that impressive? I'm assuming that they wouldn't necessarily know the person or is that incorrect? Is there a process that they make you go through to get a letter?
There could be a process. Then again the OP may by chance know one. You have to have a letter of Congressional nomination to attend the military academies. Anytime you work in government references from other governmental officials are big. If I wanted in bad enough I'd call my representative and two senators. The worse they could say is no.
- 0May 25, '11 by New1LTThat's a bit over kill advice. We're talking about Direct Commission here, not an election. The references are personal in nature to attest to ones character, leadership abilities, and nursing capabilities. I'm sure her Representative or Senators are not going to score points with the board. Merit, not people you "know", are going to win over the board members.
- 0Quote from New1LTIf the OP wants it bad enough I wouldn't overlook it. I've seen forced hires because of political references.That's a bit over kill advice. We're talking about Direct Commission here, not an election. The references are personal in nature to attest to ones character, leadership abilities, and nursing capabilities. I'm sure her Representative or Senators are not going to score points with the board. Merit, not people you "know", are going to win over the board members.
- 1May 26, '11 by Pixie.RN Senior ModeratorHaving the foresight to get letters from Congress might make a candidate stand out, too, regardless of the content of the letter. I don't think there is overkill if one wants it badly enough. Heck, I went out and got another ED certification (Certified Pediatric Emergency Nurse [CPEN]), even though I already met the M5 requirements with my CEN, just to make myself more desirable. I can't say what it was that got me selected over people who must have been just as qualified, so I put everything I could into my packet and CV.
Good luck to the OP!