Carolinas Healthcare System's RN Residency Program 2017

  1. Hi everyone,

    I just applied to the nurse residency program offered through CHS. I have a few questions!

    - How competitive is it to get placed? (Especially into peds at Levine Children's Hospital.. that's my ideal placement!).
    - Any insight on interviews?
    - Does anyone know the current pay for a new grad at CHS? Feel free to directly message me if you would rather not publicly post it.
    - Has anyone done the nurse residency program or doing it now? How do you like it?
    - Do people generally like working for CHS?
    - If you applied for your NC license out of state... how long did it take to get?

    Thank you guys for any help!!
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   Nurse0322
    Hey Novist Nurse,

    As far for December Grads the competition is a lot lower than if you graduated in May. Can't give you specifics, but you have a good shot. I do have to mention that almost everyone I know wants PEDS or women's services. So it may be more of a hassle, but its worth a shot. As far as interviews I believe offers have not been extended yet, unless you are an internal employee. Otherwise, it looks like HR will reach out after applications are due (October 1). Pay for acute care setting is said to be around 21.75, so probably the lowest in the area. You are also asked to sign a contract with the length depending on what specialty you accept. Every hospital has its pros and cons. I would more so look at if the employees are happy on the unit. One unit can differ greatly from the other. There are people who have worked years there, and there are others who can't wait to leave. Still working on the license myself...
  4. by   AuntC_NC
    I can't advise you on applying from out of state as I was a NC resident when I was hired as a new grad RN in 2011. I graduated from a CHS affiliated school (ADN). Many of my peers took jobs in the units where they completed a preceptorship in the final semester. We were able to submit our top choices of units and most people went where they thought they'd like to work. For some the placement was decided by faculty. Pediatrics/Womens/ER were popular and competitive. I have been told the starting pay for new grad RN is around $23 + shift diff with CHS. I think Novant Health starts new grads at $24ish. At CHS both BSN and ADN earn the same. As a BSN you can complete a clinical ladder to obtain a pay raise, I don't recall the percentage%. There is a push for BSN to achieve Magnet status.

    When I was there, Nurse residency programs were "Advance" = Acute Care, and "Journey" = Critical Care. These programs were VERY competitive and as I recall, only a few were selected to apply. The interview is a panel interview and pretty intense. Be prepared to answer behavioral ex."Nursing work often involves a number of daily frustrations. Tell me about some of the frustrations you have dealt with recently" You will also be asked clinical scenario questions. They will paint a picture of a patient who has a sudden change of condition and is now experiencing some kind of distress (fell, is clutching their chest in pain, is bleeding, became diaphoretic, confused, etc.) I know several RNs who went through the Journey program and loved it.

    Comparatively in my opinion, CHS pay and benefits are not up to par. CHS has some great qualities as a top notch healthcare provider. I had both great coworkers and managers as well as bad coworkers and managers. As with any company, there are departments that are really awesome and some that you want to stay away from. You just have to find a unit where you feel at home and know you can add value..... and have opportunities for advancement. You need a manager and coworkers who always have your back. You'll find it....it may take a few moves but that is one of the perks in nursing....you can try it all!

    I don't know what CHS is doing for new grad orientation now (for those not in the residency programs) but I was disappointed in mine. I did not have a consistent preceptor and it was very unstructured and random. IMO they want you in staffing as quickly as possible so it felt very rushed to me. I survived somehow but remember feeling very disillusioned at the start of my nursing career. I think every new grad nurse should have a residency, it is so very important when you are just starting out. As a whole I don't think upper management has a true understanding/appreciation for the tremendous value of the bedside nurse. At the time I felt the level of patient care was excellent and overall I enjoyed my time there. Good luck with your applications and career path
  5. by   novistnurse77
    Quote from Nurse0322
    Hey Novist Nurse,

    As far for December Grads the competition is a lot lower than if you graduated in May. Can't give you specifics, but you have a good shot. I do have to mention that almost everyone I know wants PEDS or women's services. So it may be more of a hassle, but its worth a shot. As far as interviews I believe offers have not been extended yet, unless you are an internal employee. Otherwise, it looks like HR will reach out after applications are due (October 1). Pay for acute care setting is said to be around 21.75, so probably the lowest in the area. You are also asked to sign a contract with the length depending on what specialty you accept. Every hospital has its pros and cons. I would more so look at if the employees are happy on the unit. One unit can differ greatly from the other. There are people who have worked years there, and there are others who can't wait to leave. Still working on the license myself...
    Thank you so much for the info!! Super helpful! I put peds and women's health at the top of my list... then ED and or critical care. What would you say is a competitive application? I'm hoping that because I'm not from the area that doesn't hurt me. I have a BSN and think I have a competitive GPA? (a 3.64) and I've had hospital experience. I have already passed my NCLEX too so I just have to apply for my NC license. Really hoping I get an interview!! :/ Interviews and offers are sent between October 1-end of December.
  6. by   novistnurse77
    Quote from AuntC_NC
    I can't advise you on applying from out of state as I was a NC resident when I was hired as a new grad RN in 2011. I graduated from a CHS affiliated school (ADN). Many of my peers took jobs in the units where they completed a preceptorship in the final semester. We were able to submit our top choices of units and most people went where they thought they'd like to work. For some the placement was decided by faculty. Pediatrics/Womens/ER were popular and competitive. I have been told the starting pay for new grad RN is around $23 + shift diff with CHS. I think Novant Health starts new grads at $24ish. At CHS both BSN and ADN earn the same. As a BSN you can complete a clinical ladder to obtain a pay raise, I don't recall the percentage%. There is a push for BSN to achieve Magnet status.

    When I was there, Nurse residency programs were "Advance" = Acute Care, and "Journey" = Critical Care. These programs were VERY competitive and as I recall, only a few were selected to apply. The interview is a panel interview and pretty intense. Be prepared to answer behavioral ex."Nursing work often involves a number of daily frustrations. Tell me about some of the frustrations you have dealt with recently" You will also be asked clinical scenario questions. They will paint a picture of a patient who has a sudden change of condition and is now experiencing some kind of distress (fell, is clutching their chest in pain, is bleeding, became diaphoretic, confused, etc.) I know several RNs who went through the Journey program and loved it.

    Comparatively in my opinion, CHS pay and benefits are not up to par. CHS has some great qualities as a top notch healthcare provider. I had both great coworkers and managers as well as bad coworkers and managers. As with any company, there are departments that are really awesome and some that you want to stay away from. You just have to find a unit where you feel at home and know you can add value..... and have opportunities for advancement. You need a manager and coworkers who always have your back. You'll find it....it may take a few moves but that is one of the perks in nursing....you can try it all!

    I don't know what CHS is doing for new grad orientation now (for those not in the residency programs) but I was disappointed in mine. I did not have a consistent preceptor and it was very unstructured and random. IMO they want you in staffing as quickly as possible so it felt very rushed to me. I survived somehow but remember feeling very disillusioned at the start of my nursing career. I think every new grad nurse should have a residency, it is so very important when you are just starting out. As a whole I don't think upper management has a true understanding/appreciation for the tremendous value of the bedside nurse. At the time I felt the level of patient care was excellent and overall I enjoyed my time there. Good luck with your applications and career path
    Ahhh!! Thanks so much!! Really informative! Ugh.. I hate interviews :/ So intimidating. I hear that the interviews for a new grad RN are always really difficult. Then after your first job, it's all down hill from there. I've been super stressed about job hunting. It's like.. you work so hard in nursing school, then you work hard to pass your boards and THEN still have to nail an interview to get a job. I'm really hoping to get something at CHS. I have heard good things about the nurse residency program at CHS. I know an alumn from school who just finished it and is still there at CHS. She had pretty positive things to say. I'm super excited to just start my career as a nurse.
  7. by   Nurse0322
    When HR came to my school they mentioned that women's health and pediatrics have about 30 spots open. ED and critical care are also competitive, but if you open to things, then hopefully you'll hear something soon. I am from in state as well, but I would have to believe that passing the NCLEX and already having some experience should be a positive. You would be a sure bet! No chance they'd have to drop you if you failed the exam. Keep me updated!!! I'd love to hear where you end up.
  8. by   novistnurse77
    Thanks Nurse 0322!! I'll definitely keep you posted. Did HR mean 30 spots each (30 for peds and 30 for women's health)? Or just 30 spots total? :/ Also.. did they say generally how many applicants they get for the winter cycle? Any other info I should know? Thanks again for sharing!!
  9. by   Nurse0322
    That is something I wondered myself! I'm unsure if they meant 30 total or 3 a piece. They didn't give a clear number for the applicants, but it was significantly lower.... like in the 300's. I don't think so. I'm still waiting to hear back myself. Hopefully the interviews start flowing in.
  10. by   novistnurse77
    Ahh.. I guess we'll see!! I hope I hear back and get an interview! But good luck to you too!!! Keep me posted. What did you put down for your preferences??
  11. by   theseriousnurse2b
    I am a Charlotte native who graduated in May and am half way through the Journey ICU RN Residency Program at CMC.

    Things are pretty competitive. Big push for BSN (I am ADN, but start RN-BSN in January). It helps if you have healthcare experience, especially working within the system (of the 5 new grads my unit hired, only one was from outside the system, but other units hired more outsiders). The thing about Charlotte is that we have like 11 different nursing programs, but only some of them graduate a class in December.

    My interview was over an hour long. They asked me like 12-15 questions, then there was time for me to ask 4 or 5 questions and tour the unit. You have to just do whatever it takes to prepare and be confident. Every unit has its own preferences, but they typically want to see professionalism, teamwork, an inquisitive mind and the drive to self educate outside of your shift for new grads.

    The pay is lower than local competition, with night shift diff at $4 and weekend at $3. However, CHS, especially CMC Main offers the more comprehensive and high tech specialty services, with nationally recognized expertise in multiple areas as compared to any other hospital in the region. There are so many opportunities to learn and advance your practice, particularly at CMC Main.

    As for the residency program, I can only speak to critical care (Journey). I think it is great. I have a preceptor for 6 months of on the floor full time experience, broken down into 4 phases. You start with stable patients, then advance to the sickest, with phase meetings to identify strengths/weaknesses and how the unit and residency program can support you as you grow in your role. We also have classes about concepts that are vital to critical care, get ACLS certification, and attend high fidelity simulations to practice skills/protocols and critical thinking. There are competancy tests, a presentation to your fellow residents on a patient of your choice, and a unit education project. They are not at all stressful like school though. You just use these opportunities as tools to evaluate where you are and what you need as a new nurse. I couldn't be more grateful to spend my first 6 months of professional practice in this program!

    Everyone's opinion about working at CHS differs and is also influenced by their unit culture. Overall, CHS provides excellent services and unparalleled expertise, but with lower pay and area for improvement. You have to go into it knowing that you will go through tough times as a new grad and as a nurse. You have to love what you do and become an involved teammate if you want to foster contentment long term.

    Wish you the best!

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