Nursing Student Considering NICU

  1. 0
    Hi There,
    I am a nursing student, who wil be graduating in Dec. I loved working in the NICU during my clinical experience and am considering going into this area of nursing. My last semester of school, I will be doing a preceptorship. My thought was to try to find one working in the NICU, however I don't want to "pigeon hole" myself. I know that as a new grad it may be easier to find a job working with adults and I fear doing my preceptoship caring for infants could limit my opportunities to work in other areas of the hospital as well. What are your thoughts? opinions? what do you like/dislike about working in this field? Did you work in other areas of the hopsital previously?
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  4. 12 Comments so far...

  5. 1
    I understand your concerns about "pigeon-holing" yourself, but my opinion is that if you are really serious about pursuing NICU, doing a preceptorship there is the best way to get your foot in the door. NICU is so different from any other area of nursing. And if you make a good impression, you may even be able to get a job in the NICU that you precept in. It's such a good way to have an "in" that many other new grads do not! You will need to consider how seriously you want to pursue NICU, or if you could be equally happy working with adults in med-surg or ICU. For me, once I knew that I wanted to do NICU, it was hard to even consider the prospect of working with adults again!

    I am a new grad, and will start my job as a NICU nurse in June. I went all in, took a risk, and only applied to NICUs (but I applied just about everywhere in the state because I didn't care about moving). It worked out well for me! My favorite things about NICU?

    -Knowing that I'll never have to throw out my back trying to move one of my patients up in bed
    -When one of your tiniest babies grabs your finger in an attempt to stop you from doing whatever is irritating him (assessment, diaper change)...like it could make a difference
    -The reaction from people when you tell them you are a NICU nurse
    -When the parents of a baby who were too afraid to visit because they weren't sure he would make it, come in and hold him for the first time.
    ~miss_mercy_me likes this.
  6. 0
    Thanks for your reply
    It's nice to have the opinion of someone who has been there and recently none the less. I do think it would give me a decent "in" into that area of nursing. Thus far that is the area that I have enjoyed far more than med/surg, adult care. I'm going to let it sit for awhile over my break, but I'm leaning more and more towards working in that field of nursing.
  7. 0
    Good Luck!

    If you need more time in the NICU in order to make your decision, you might see if your local hospital allows volunteers as feeders or "cuddlers." I know that my nursing school only gave us a few short hours for our one and only NICU clinical, so not much time at all if you're trying to get a feel for it as a potential place to work!
  8. 1
    I don't think it will pigeon-hole you. You are still learning about time-management, interdisciplinary communication, documentation, and so on.
    Bortaz, RN likes this.
  9. 1
    Depends on what you want to do...I worked as a nurse tech in trauma surgery (adults), thought I loved it.

    Went to NICU as a new grad 4 years ago...and now I despise adults AND peds. I have absolutely no desire to take care of anyone >10kg and floating to our PICU re-inforces this idea every single time.
    Bortaz, RN likes this.
  10. 1
    Quote from babyRN.

    Went to NICU as a new grad 4 years ago...and now I despise adults AND peds. I have absolutely no desire to take care of anyone >10kg and floating to our PICU re-inforces this idea every single time.
    Amen, sistah. And 10kg is too much. I'm thinking nothing >5kg.
    NICU Kristen likes this.
  11. 1
    I don't know Bortaz. I fed a 4 kg baby the other day and my wrist hurt from supporting his head for, like, 20 minutes.
    NICU Kristen likes this.
  12. 1
    We have chairs with arm rests.
    celyseRNBSN likes this.
  13. 1
    lol @ Bortaz! Yeah, actually, 5kg is probably my max. Unfortunately we keep kids forever and it takes a bit of pleading to get PICU to take our kids...the oldest I've seen on our unit was 13 months. Luckily those types usually have a bunch of primaries and I haven't been stuck with a really big kid in awhile...
    Bortaz, RN likes this.


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