Need advice for employment after graduation

  1. I will graduate in December and am so confused. My ultimate goal is to work PRN; however, I am aware that it's best to work full time for a while before trying to do so. I know from clinicals that I absolutely do not want to be a "floor" nurse. I would very much like to work OR full time for a year and then go to PRN. I live in South central Illinois so I have many many hospital choices...from Springfield, IL down to St.Louis, Mo. and in between. I left my job making $16.00 and hour with no college degree to pursue a degree in nursing. From everything I am reading the starting pay really stinks. I just would hate to think that I worked this hard for this long to only come out making a couple dollars an hour more than I did before. (I know it will eventually go up but just the thought of all the hard work and brain aches of studying.. lol) So, will hospitals hire new graduates as PRN after you do a 6 month orientation or something? Also, if anyone knows what starting pay is in the hospitals in this 120 mile radius? Please let me know your thoughts! Thanks!