Older new grad...Career change...No experience...Can't get any interviews! - page 2

Hello! :) LPN NEWBIE here! :nurse: I graduated in Aug. 2010. Took the NCLEX at the end of Oct. 2010. Passed, first time. I had been searching every outlet to land my first LPN position and it... Read More

  1. by   notmanydaysoff
    where I live there is a community health center that cares for the medically indigent. they advertise for health care volunteers (nurses, MAs, PAs, NPs, MDs).
  2. by   WIN007
    Quote from CompassionateLPN
    Hello! LPN NEWBIE here!

    I graduated in Aug. 2010. Took the NCLEX at the end of Oct. 2010. Passed, first time. I had been searching every outlet to land my first LPN position and it took a very long time. I started working for an org. in Feb. and with very minimal training, orientation, or shadowing, I was thrown into the field. Then with very minimal support or direction from mgmt. or the nursing supervisor I was left to 'sink or swim'! I thought I was swimming fairly well, with the RN's and pt's apparantly happy with my work, but for the org. NOTHING I did seemed to be right and after only 2 mos. into my probation period it was mutually agreed that I be LET GO. They were not willing to accomodate my needs.

    So now I am back in the job searching pool again and have found it next to impossible to even get my foot in the door. I have filled out many applications and sent out my resume to almost every place I know of and NOTHING! Not one BITE!

    I'd like to FIX what might be 'wrong' but how can I when I don't know what it is!?!
    Is it my resume?!
    Is it my cover letter?!
    Is it my lack of previous medical experience because of my career change?!
    Is it my age?!
    Is it just the economic times and today's job market?!
    Is it that I'm competing against others with experience and not even being considered b/c of that?!
    Is it a combination of any of these?!


    I know I'm a good nurse.
    And with the right opportunity I know I can further develop my knowledge and skills and grow as a professional nurse.
    All I need is that first employer to give me a chance to show them what I've got and SHINE! :redpinkhe
    I'm trying NOT to get discouraged but ..........

    I do think it's a combination of all of this. Having the let-go probably isn't helping among local providers. And the industry is very biased towards younger nurses to my experience. A 23 year old new nurse gets her hand held and everyone willing to bend over to help her, but a 45 year old nurse is expected to presumably assimilate everything through osmosis and transition into an independent nurse without any help, and not infrequently into a hostile environment. The grand irony of it is to my experience it's actually the younger nurses that are more likely to leave an organizaton in a few years (marriage, pregnancy, better offer, etc) and older nurses stay put for 15 or more years.

    Look beyond your area if you can. It could be someone from your prior mentioned job is trashing you and that will matter more to local facilities. Specifically I woudl say <b> network network network </b>. talk to people everywhere you go and let them know you're a nurse in need of a job. On the train, at church, in line at the grocery store. Everywhere you go. Find out how to volunteer for the flu shot administration programs and get prepared to do that. Attend the state nurse chapter meetings. If you're not a member of the ANA then join and attend the meetings! Call your nursing school instructors and let them know you're looking. Etc.
  3. by   CompassionateLPN
    Hazel ~ Thanks for your input and thoughts. I totally agree that it's who you know more than what you know.

    Not many ~ I'll be looking into community health centers for some welcome experience IF possible. Thanks!

    Win007 ~ My biggest concern is to whether or not to put the 2 month experience on my resume or not. I don't want to make it seem like I have been doing nothing since graduation BUT at the same time I know the org. where I had mgmt. difficulties will not be favorable as a contact. Even IF you say don't contact some places still do, especially since you don't work there anymore.


    I did just take a P/T position with a local pediatric home care agency. Something is better than nothing right now. I had my first nurse shadowing yesterday and will be working with the pt at night. He has a rare form of epilepsy and has several seizures during his sleep. Needs to have his VNS stimulated during that time.

    I'm still looking for a F/T nursing home or hospice job that would be perfect for my skills and learning desires.

    Wish me luck!
  4. by   NamasteNurse
    First of all, why do they know how old you are? That should not be on your resume. Remove all references to age such as high school or college graduation dates.

    Second, age is a good thing. Especially in nursing. You know the human body better having had one for more years. You have life experience which no younger person can claim. You have been in the workforce for more years meaning you know how to get along with others, how to act professionally and maturely in the workplace.

    Resumes today should be skills based. Meaning, you list what you know how to do. List some of the things you did in nursing school well.

    Highly motivated reliable worker seeks LPN position.

    Skills: (of course spell everything out)
    med administration including IM, SC, PO, insulin, IV fluids
    wound care, ostomy, trach care
    data gathering including vital signs, blood sugars, O2 sats and admin

    then list other skills you have from other jobs such as,
    experience with educating clients
    public speaking
    writing skills,
    grant writing
    communication skills
    excellent team player

    Show that you are poised and mature in a workplace kind of way. Nurses have a high turnover rate and HR wants to know you will be there for the duration.
    Best of luck.
    PS I got my first LPN job at age 52
  5. by   shadowguy
    You are not the only one, old timer. I graduated and obtained my license in Sept 2010. I have sent out untold resumes. I have gotten 3 interviews. I am 45 and have prior supervisory experience within civil service. i have a solid 20 year work history. I speak a second language and I am a male. I run 2 to 3 miles a day and can do more push ups than my teen-age son. Well, all I kept hearing is how they need nurses, male nurses, nurses whom speak a second language. It seems the real world is always different.
  6. by   LongislandRN23
    I do think that employers should properly orient new staff, and especially new grads. However I do not think that they should "accommodate" you. Survival of the fittest. I am sure there are many nurses, and from other professions who had to "swim or drown" and many of them jumped in and swam, and many drowned. No one is going to hold your hand and don't expect them too.
  7. by   1pinknurse
    I suggest you contacting the job placement coordinator at your school. Ask him/her for advice on your cover letter and resume. None the less, do something different. Whether that be changing your resume packet or start mailing resumes and cover letters via USPS to facilities that interest you. All I know is, if this is where your heart is then don't ever give up. The right job is out there waiting for you to go get it. Best of luck to you!!
  8. by   tdujour
    Wow, I needed this thread!
    I have 20 years of retail experience, graduated in December and have not received a single call back. It is very frustrating. I have had my resume' professionally fine-tuned.
    My twist is that my school is losing their approval after the next graduating class in October. They have been in the newspaper and the news so many times. Not only do I have to defend my age, I have to defend my school. I have no idea what to do next. I tried hitting the pavement, but it seems as though most places are only accepting electronic submissions and almost seemed annoyed when I show up. Sigh.
  9. by   qymtd
    I am also an older RN graduated with refresher program this August, and got my RN license re-activated.
    Past 5 years I have been taking care my father full time until he passed away early this year. I have Master degree and worked in computer Industry for more than 10 years. (Changed my field after I got my RN license)

    Started searching for RN jobs since this September, most online application requires detail personal information (mostly including birth date), I received no
    calls. I tried to apply for many internship programs, no response. I got a few
    interview after sending out tens of resumes, after interview there were forms to filled out for employment processing (I got an offer for entry level pay), it requires to provide birth date, I was told to call back 2 to 3 days later to verify.
    When I called back, they were interview others for the position.

    yes, I am old (turn into 60 next Jan.), but I still feel young, I am slim, and have good education backgound. I feel very much hurt being thrown out of the door. I have spent past 5 years taking care of my father full time, and live on
    my savings, and now I have no where to go!

    I will not spend any more time and money on this RN job anymore, I do not feel
    I have a chace to survive and shine. Anyone have a success story with my similar case? please share.
  10. by   andreasmom02
    Well, I know how you feel, & honestly feel I'm in a worse situation... I'm 31, & a mother of 2 young girls. I graduated in '07 from LPN school & got my license in '08. I have barely worked since getting my license to be a stay at home mom w/ my kids. My husband makes good money, so I have been blessed to say home with them.... But now I'm wanting to start working as an LPN because I miss nursing, & don't know where to start. My license is active, but I have no experience. I was a beautician before becoming an LPN, and don't have any other prior healthcare experience. I tried working in a nursing home a little while after getting my LPN license, but it just wasn't my "cup of tea"... I only lasted a few days before quitting to be a SAHM. I really look up to the LPN's who can juggle LTC, but it really wasn't for me. I'm willing to do any other LPN job, but trying to avoid LTC. The few days I was there, it really took a toll on me emotionally. So I really want to avoid that if possible, but do want to get back in to nursing soon. I just feel like my resume is a blank cavas, literally...
  11. by   Happy2bLPN
    I have found more luck after getting IV certified. Certifications are key I think - IV / Phlebotomy and Pharmacy. Go to Napnes.org. That might will help. I agree that your resume should be skilled based. License and Certs up top - plus any foreign language skills - i.e Spanish for Healthcare Providers - community colleges usually have classes. I would only list a 10 yr employment history. I also agree with posters that you should remove any references to your age such as grad dates etc - except for your nursing school. Good Luck and hang in there
  12. by   MySonIsAdorable
    I completely agree with the HR idea...there might be a Workforce Solutions office in your area? Somewhere out there is the job for you, don't give up. Also if you are worried about your resume, keep it short & don't put in lots of stuff about jobs that do not relate to nursing (even if there is barely nothing...just list the ones you were at the longest...keep it short & there are plenty of formats online you can fill in the blanks or customize your own for letters & resumes...use resume paper (I think the grey is the best!)) Good luck!
    One more thing is to not let this get you down because if you are tired of looking & frustrated you wont be yourself...let yourself get excited because they want to see that!
  13. by   irish6363
    As I read These comments I cannot help but think it has to be the market we are in for the last several years...I am also 48 and graduated 2005..got the license and have gotten work but never in the full capacity I would like, such as full time steady and in a acute care setting. It is so very difficult right now. Also it seems no matter how educated you are in the field the only way to get in is, luck, and who you know. I have been told twice that I was overqualified for positions, sadly we have no control. Also as mentioned previously there are areas where you cant get past that HR rep/screener to get an opportunity to actually speak with the actual recruiter. It is discouraging. I have volunteered at a hospital to get familiar and hopefully work there one day. In the meantime just try to keep your nursing enthusiasm up (I know that is hard to do) and take classes to further your education.