I'm new to the site and have so many questions!
I am fairly certain that I have decided on nursing as a career, and will be applying to U of C shortly, to attend this coming September. I've spent the last few days reading the forums and some of it seems a little disheartening, I guess.
My ideal job is in the L&D ward, or post-natal care if it comes to that. Honestly, I just don't see myself doing anything else long-term. Are things really as bad as I've been reading? Is it a pipe dream to think that I will be able to get into my chosen area relatively quickly (even out of school?!)? Will I be forced to work nightmare 12 hr night shifts 6 days a week and be cr@pped on by my superiors, all the while making less than stellar wages?
I guess I'm just wondering what the reality of it all is. I don't personally know any nurses so have no one I can ask about these things before I make the jump. I quite honestly don't know the first thing about the logistics of the career and just want to know the basics I suppose.
I'm a 27 yrs old married mother of two and I want and need a stable career that will still allow me time with my family, and a decent salary. How easy will it be for me to find this? I'd rather find out the reality sooner than later!
Any insight or advice anyone can offer is very much appreciated
Jan 9, '07
Thank you so much, that was extremely helpful! I definitely do want to know the 'knitty gritty'. I don't plan on going into this only to be blind-sided in the end! I'd like to know that the education I'm paying for is getting me a job that I can live with!
A few quick questions....
What are the typical schedules like as of now (without the new proposals or what have you in place)? As in, how many days per month of 12 hrs shifts would it be? 50/50 days/nights or......? How many days off/month approx? Are these schedules flexible at all if someone wanted to work more shifts per month or less shifts per month, or does someone basically just divvy up the shifts equally and you get what you get unless an extra one comes up? I mean, if I were to request certain days off one month, would I be likely to get them or do I have no say at all? Are you forced to work your XX number of hours per month or could you be more part time if you wanted? Is current vacation the standard 2 wks/yr?
Thanks so much for your help. I really feel lost and want to be as knowledgeable as I can be without the luxury of a friend in the business!
Last edit by jrsmrs on Jan 9, '07
Jan 21, '07
Thank you for responding. I am just thrilled about this. May I call you Jan? Let me start by giving you my background. I am 38 years old and is currently working as a Clinician III nurse in the surgical/trauma icu in a Level 1 trauma hospital here in Chicago. I have been a nurse for 18years and have been in critical care for 15 years. I went back to school in the fall of 2005, and enjoyed taking one course per semester( why 1 course per semester? FT job, with 2kids and a husband, then school- thats enough
). I love the school experience of networking with other nurses from different backgrounds, and just hearing their experiences, and ofcourse. . . .school topics that make you think and realize whats going on in nursing outside of your own practice
So, how about you Jan? I see that your background is NICU and PICU. What is your educational background in relation to your area of practice? Are there any required certifications? I read that you mentioned something about issues on nursing shortage, what is the nurse -pt. ratio? Nursing shortage is also a problem here. Sometimes, my manager or asst. manager will work as a staff because we are short of staff(instead of using agency nurses).
If posting and replying is a problem, will it be easier if i give me your email add. and i will give you mine.
Thank you so much for replying.
Last edit by NotReady4PrimeTime on Jan 21, '07
: Reason: removed personal email address