PRN position and new grad

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    Is going into a PRN position as a new grad a bad idea? I'm worried I won't find a job where I'm moving, and a lot of the hospitals where I would love to work have residencies that start at two different times of the year. A family friend suggested I not for safety reasons (I whole heartedly agree), but now I'm wondering about other people's experiences.

    I would love to go into a residency, but given the time of everything (move, Kaplan, NCLEX, results, plus applying for reciprocity), the residency positions were out of the question. I really want a full-time position, but a paycheck is better than no paycheck. I can wait for my dream job, but I want to be safe while I'm waiting. My GPA isn't too bad (went up after my last semester of nursing school), did decently on HESI, and I found out last Friday via quickresults that I passed NCLEX. Just waiting now for the state's you-can-officially-put-RN-after-your-name greenlight.

    So has anyone gone into a PRN position right after nursing school? Did you like it or grin and bear it for a year? Did you feel safe with what you were doing? Or should I wait until the residency programs open again and get a non-nursing job?
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  3. 8 Comments so far...

  4. 3
    I didn't know that hospitals would hire new grads for PRN positions. By definition, a nurse who works PRN is fully trained and can step into a role with little/no orientation.

    I know of hospitals that hire new grads into float pool, but they do so with the same new grad orientation of other units (4-6 months), and they don't float them to specialized units like OB or ICU.
    Vespertinas, CrufflerJJ, and GrnTea like this.
  5. 1
    Klone,

    That answers a lot for me then. I had wondered about the float pool, because I thought too that would require much more experience, but I stand corrected. To follow up though, I haven't applied to that position yet; I was just looking around the hospitals to see what positions were available. Thank you for telling me that -- that'll help me ask the right questions when I go to the hospitals for more answers.
    CrufflerJJ likes this.
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    I'm sure there are some hospitals that will hire new grads into float pools, but, IMHO, they're not doing the new grads any favors.

    The point of being a float nurse is that you can be dropped down anywhere and do the job. Most new grads take quite a while to get used to functioning in one setting with one group of staff members. Many hospitals (the ones that are responsible employers, IMO) refuse to hire people as float/casual/perdiem people without a significant amount of clinical experience.

    But anything's possible, and I'm sure others will come along here to post that they were hired as new grads into a float pool and had a great experience.
    GrnTea likes this.
  7. 1
    Quote from elkpark
    I'm sure there are some hospitals that will hire new grads into float pools, but, IMHO, they're not doing the new grads any favors.

    The point of being a float nurse is that you can be dropped down anywhere and do the job. Most new grads take quite a while to get used to functioning in one setting with one group of staff members. Many hospitals (the ones that are responsible employers, IMO) refuse to hire people as float/casual/perdiem people without a significant amount of clinical experience.

    But anything's possible, and I'm sure others will come along here to post that they were hired as new grads into a float pool and had a great experience.
    You have a point. The last thing I want is to be so desperate for a job and experience that I get into a situation I really regret.
    GrnTea likes this.
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    Many hospitals in my organization began hiring new grads into PRN float positions simply as a way to give them employment since there weren't any FT positions open and they felt they had a commitment to continue support for their local school(s). For those positions, they adopted the approach that ElkPark described. Initial orientation is limited to one unit, and they have to work 40 hours per week during that period. Afterward, they only work in similar clinical areas.... and they are hired into FT slots as these open up.
  9. 0
    Quote from rumwynnie
    The last thing I want is to be so desperate for a job and experience that I get into a situation I really regret.

    Good decision. Keep looking.
  10. 0
    Thank you for the replies I think I found another hospital that just opened, and it's an LTAC. I hope I find more (I can work at an LTAC; I've had clinicals at an LTAC) hospitals with openings. Definitely going to keep looking, along with tweaking my resume and cover letters

    ...okay it actually is abbreviated as the above right? Not L-T-A-C-H?
  11. 0
    LTAC = long-term acute care
    LTACH = long-term acute care hospital

    Both pronounced " Ell-tack."


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