Top New Grad Candidate Rejected from New Grad Residency

  1. I guess I will preface this entire post by saying I had a job offer with the Neuro ICU I completed my senior practicum with. I declined this offer as it was contractually a long term commitment and I do not align with the values of that particular hospital system compared to other hospital systems in the city area. It was a early offer and I was waiting to hear back from the other hospitals I had applied to in which I really wanted to work. I am wondering at this point if this was a regretful move...

    I declined because I thought I was a top candidate for other critical care new graduate residency programs in the area with better reputations and values I align with. I went to the top nursing program in the state, graduated summa cum laude and top of the class, did research at my top choice academic hospital, worked as an ER Tech for 3 years at some of the best Trauma 1/academic facilities in CA, completed senior practicum in the ICU, have a BS and a BSN now, have all this international volunteer experience, been published... etc. etc. etc.

    So this morning I was a bit shocked to hear from my absolute top choice employer when I received the generic "Thank you for your interest in our new graduate residency program. We decided to choose other candidates that best align with our needs" type of e-mail that goes out to everyone that were not selected. Our nursing program was even affiliated and on campus with this hospital and was considered a bridge into their new graduate residency program.

    Not to say that I was expecting them to hand me a position here by any means... I was just a bit shocked watching my nursing class colleagues receive interviews and then I receive that email this AM.

    Is anyone else in this same boat? Has anyone else been in this same position? Now I feel like I'm regretting declining the offer that wasn't the best fit for the next 2 years. I don't know why I was rejected .. trying to be positive and keep studying for the NCLEX and take in the new years on good feet. Oh yeah.. also those looming out of state tuition student loans .... ahhhhh
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   CrunchRN
    As a new grad you just can't afford to be picky. Lesson learned. Maybe call the hospital that offered and see if there is any chance they will hire you. If not, then just keep applying everywhere.
  4. by   Meriwhen
    Being the top grad in your class doesn't guarantee you'll get hired over your classmates and/or at your #1 choice of hospital (ask me how I know). It does help make you a much stronger applicant than someone who didn't do as well academically, but it in no way guarantees a job.

    First of all, the obvious: was your application to Dream Hospital complete? All required materials submitted? Forms filled out in full? Any chance you missed anything? If your application was incomplete, that's pretty much an automatic rejection.

    Look at your resume: was it well-organized? Formatted properly (especially if printed)?Optimized for computer searches/screening programs? Error-free?

    Any problems with any previous employment, academic info or references being verified? That was another lesson I learned the hard way (previous job claimed they had no record of my employment; luckily I had saved 5 years of pay stubs to prove otherwise). I didn't know about it until one of the employers who was verifying my information called to tell me. Who knows how many rejections that issue may have played a part in? Point being, were there any issues with YOURS?

    Otherwise...for whatever reason, you weren't a considered a suitable applicant. This doesn't mean there was necessarily a problem with you. It could have been that:


    • Other applicants were internal candidates at Dream Hospital
    • Other applicants did their practicums/clinicals there
    • Other applicants had better networking connections there
    • Other applicants had more relevant work experience
    • Other applicants brought something to the table that you didn't have (such as being bilingual) that they were looking for
    • There was a cutoff (date/time, or number) for applications accepted for the program and yours came in too late. Cutoff criteria isn't always public knowledge.
    • There were a limited number of spaces and too many qualified applicants (if there's only 10 spots, there's only 10 getting hired; the other just-as-qualified applicants will have to be told No)

    and

    • Plain old dumb luck. Sometimes there is no logical explanation why you didn't get picked


    CrunchRN is 100% right in that new grads can't afford to be too picky. There's too much risk, as you've learned the hard way too.

    Contact the other hospital to see if they can give you that opportunity back--the worst thing that can happen is that they say No. Or since that hospital thinks so highly of you, maybe they have other opportunities that you can apply for.

    Apply everywhere else that you can. If you are able to relocate, consider applying to smaller job markets where you'll have a better chance.

    Consider different specialities--not every critical care nurse starts out in critical care. Many work their way over from other specialties. And a lot of facilities offer internal training programs--such as for ICU--for nurses who want to switch specialities after they get some acute care experience first.

    No one says that you have to stay at this first job forever--get your year of two of experience, then try to get back into Dream Hospital. Or you may find that after a couple of years elsewhere, Dream Hospital isn't quite as a dreamy as you thought it would be.

    But most of all, focus on taking the NCLEX. All your work is for nothing if you don't get your license.

    I feel for you because I've been there, done that, and got the T-shirt too. It sucks and it doesn't make sense. It's not logical at all. But it happens. And it's only the end IF you let it be. Sometimes the path to our dream just takes a different path than we planned. It took me several years to get to where I finally want to be, but I got here (and yes, I was told No by them on the first go-round). You will get there too.

    Best of luck.
    Last edit by Meriwhen on Dec 29, '16
  5. by   Sour Lemon
    You come across as somewhat non-pliable, which could harm your chances for an entry level position. Your seem very qualified, but if might also benefit you to soften things up. People hire people they find likeable and can relate to.
  6. by   Meeshie
    I graduated valedictorian. It still took me several interviews to find that right fit and get a job offer that I could live with accepting. It really isn't about grades once you start interviewing, it's more about personality and fit.
  7. by   Buyer beware
    Quote from Sour Lemon
    You come across as somewhat non-pliable, which could harm your chances for an entry level position. Your seem very qualified, but if might also benefit you to soften things up. People hire people they find likeable and can relate to.
    This is correct and harkens back to the old adage that has something to do with who you know and who you...well you know.
    So if this were a meritocracy as our leaders would have us believe, you would have been a shoe-in.
    Last edit by Buyer beware on Jan 5 : Reason: w
  8. by   JadedCPN
    Quote from Meeshie
    I graduated valedictorian. It still took me several interviews to find that right fit and get a job offer that I could live with accepting. It really isn't about grades once you start interviewing, it's more about personality and fit.
    This is an excellent point. OP, you mentioned all of your on-paper achievements as to why you should have received the position at Dream Hospital, but you didn't mention how the interview went - it very well could have been that you wore something, said something, did something etc that made them feel you weren't the best fit for the position despite your achievements.
  9. by   applesxoranges
    • Plain old dumb luck. Sometimes there is no logical explanation why you didn't get picked
    Speaking of this, I had been turned down by HR multiple times till my one application went through. Manager never even saw it. Not sure why my other applications were rejected because they were all the same...
  10. by   FutureMSN
    I'm thinking it could've been your attitude at the interview. You probably came off as entitled and you may not align with the values of Dream Hospital.
    The good thing is, there are other jobs out there.

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