I graduated w/ as a BSN in December, passed the nclex in January, got my first job as a home health nurse at the end of january, and then got a fulltime RN job at a nursing home. I went this route because I did not get a single call back from a hospital recruiter. I am making an easy $100k w/ OT, but I plan on going back for a masters as a NP. The problem is that I got 2 interviews from two hospitals. One is a prestigious Chicago hospital and the other one isn't so prestigious. One position is for the OR and the other one is the ICU. I know these two are usually top on the list of most nursing students. Please advice me, should I stay where I am at or quit my current jobs (which is the only way I can do either of the other jobs if I get it) or stay where I am at? I know the ICU especially will broaden my skills enormously, but the ICU job is at a poor chicago hospital. I don't know how much I can learn as a scrub nurse or a circulating nurse. For future growth what should I do? I almost know the answer, but I am hoping to get a different perspective from someone with more experience.
Mar 29, '11
Just out of curiosity, what interests you about operating room nursing?
Mar 29, '11
What type of NP do you see yourself? What type of environment? Will one of these jobs help to start that career focus?
Mar 29, '11
First of all Kalyn, I love the OR. I love everything about it, but I am just worried that 10 years down the line someone looks at my resume and only sees me fit to work in an OR because my skills are so limited. Hope this clears up my situation.
And traumaRU, Well I wanted to focus on critical care and I know the ICU job would benefit me more and in fact I would need 1 yr min of acute care experience. The only problem there is that its at a very undesirable hospital and I am worried about what I will learn. Also if schools
and employers will look at the hospital and therefore me negatively due to this. The hospital has had many issues in the past from the state and with law suits...hope this clears things up a bit more.
Mar 29, '11
Why not wait until an ICU position opens up at a better hospital? You definitely won't be making anything close to 100K, because most of the hospitals limit OT. Would you be OK with a big pay cut?
The OR would be a great option if you want to be a Surgical First Assist, but it wouldn't give you valuable experience for many other advanced degree positions.
If it were me, I would want to have the strongest resume possible, so I would wait for a position that meets both my area of interest and quality standards.
Good luck, it's a tough decision to make.
Mar 30, '11
Well Bells, I completely see your point about waiting for the ICU job. My concern though is that the longer I work as a nursing home RN the less marketable I become. I don't know if this is a reasonable concern or not. Honestly the money is nice but I get about 26-30 patients each day I work and I work my a$$ off for the money. I am willing to take a pay cut at the nursing home job because I can always pick up few more patients with home health and still make the same money overall.
And to the person that send me the private message. I can't send you the info of where I went to school or any of the hospitals I am speaking about until this whole thing clears up at least. I do have a bachelor's in nursing though and I make $100k or more just from the nursing home. And you mentioned going the LPN route, I would advice against it. Even my nursing home stopped hiring LPNs and I know they are suppose to have some LPN meeting next month at our work for the LPNs we already have. I don't know what the meeting is about but the LPNs are not happy about it so far. And the reason I did not private message you is because I have no idea where the reply button is for the private message.
Apr 3, '11
I would take the ICU position. ICU is difficult to get in Chicago right now with no experience. It can transition you into a better hospital. The experience is what you make of it and even if the hospital isn't as prestegious, you will definitely see a variety of patient conditions and treatments that you will never see in the OR and home health. Pass on it now and it might not come again for a long time.
Apr 12, '11
I agree with rnspark. ICU will give you great experience. Not my thing personally, but I do think that unless as a relatively newer RN unless you see yourself in OR permanently, your experience will be limited. You can always switch hospitals if you don't like it. It's always easier to get a job when you have a job.
Apr 17, '11
Definately, hands down, take the ICU job. You will learn and see so much!! Especially since it is a "poor hospital". I worked with a nurse who had worked at cook county and she had taken care of such a broad range of things...alot of trauma and gun shot wounds. OR experience is not going to give you what you need to be a nurse practioner. From an educational standpoint, I would not admit someone to the program if they had just worked in the OR. You will have a distinct advantage working in the ICU. Don't think of it as working in a bad hosptial, think of it as a GREAT opportunity. They are willing to hire you and train you, take advantage of that!!
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