I am an RN with my BSN. I have been a nurse since Sept 2008. In Oct 2008 I worked for some flu shot clinics and then began working at an ATF (Adult Training Facility). This is basically a place where adults with mental health/ mental retardation come during the day to gain work skills. I also work part time in a residential facility with disabled adults. The ATF pays REALLY poorly, but it is consistent and 40 hours a week plus benefits. The residential facility pays well, but that is only part time. I interviewed for a peds home care job and was offered a position there doing shift work, but it is per diem. I would need to work at least 30 hours a week to balance out what I make in 40 at the ATF.
So I am trying to decide what to do with my career. I like working with this population, but I am afraid of limiting myself. I have applied to every hospital within 1 hour of where I live more than once and have not even been called in for an interview. I would like to earn enough money to pay my bills on time, and maybe even start to build some savings. I don't really know what kind of nursing I want to do- but I keep hearing that I "have" to get a year of med/surg to make myself marketable. I know I really like to be challenged mentally when I work, and I am not using most of my nursing knowledge or critical thinking skills in this job. One suggestion I have gotten from other nurses is to stay with my current full time job for at least a year before quitting to show I am reliable. Other nurses say to go with the home care job to show I am seeking out new learning experiences. I wish there was a clear answer.