Contemplating Job Offer

  1. Hi there! I just thought I'd post a couple questions for anyone who is willing to answer them.

    I am a 2nd year graduate student working on my MSN in Nursing Education. So far I love the program and all that I'm learning. I decided to go the teaching route in nursing about 3 years ago and am now making good on that plan!

    My clinical background has been labor and delivery, post-partum and nursery. Currently I am working in research at a birth defects center, and am doing that for a paycheck, basically.

    I have been offered a job in an Educational Resources dept as a Education Coordinator. My job would be mainly orientation of new nurses and clinical staff. Some of the classes include med/surg concepts, such as chest tubes, respiratory issues, etc. I would love to teach things related to Labor and Delivery however, there already is a Coordinator in place doing just that.

    I am worried about being "qualified" to teach such classes when my expertise is so limited to a specialty area.

    Thoughts? Guidance? Help?
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  2. 26 Comments

  3. by   renerian
    I think it would be an awesome job to help new nurses become adjusted to their new jobs by showing them some of the skills they need. Your the first person they work with in some terms. If it was me i would take it. What is your gut telling you?

    renerian
  4. by   baseline
    Hey Susy, you have a whole wealth of experience right here on the BB. Ask and you shall receive, although a poll position, or a few days doing tag-along in an ICU might be helpful........

    But the real question is........what do YOU want to do?
  5. by   l.rae
    Susy, personally, l would take it. You may have an opportunity to change departments later Get your foot in the door.
  6. by   llg
    Hi, Susy,

    Your dilemma is the one I have always faced. I've spent much of my career in staff development and I HATE teaching classes on topics for which I have no experience. I also think it is not fair for the poor students who have to endure an "underqualified" instructor. I don't blame you at all for being hesitant.

    Here are a few questions that might help you think it through:
    1. Exactly what percentage of your job time would be spent teaching topics you are not comfortable with? If it is only an ocassional topic, that's not so bad. If it's the main portion of your time, you might be miserable.

    2. Are the classes in question at the "introductory level" in which you will only be responsible for reviewing the policy and knowing the basics? ... or will you be expected to be an expert and answer advanced level questions about trouble-shooting, etc. Sometimes, orientation classes consist of short & sweet reviews of the policy plus a little "hands on time" with the equipment. You could do a little homework and practice a little and probably be fine. However, if the classes are more indepth and your lack of experience would be obvious .... it might be a bad fit for you.

    3. How much orientation will you get to the new job? Will you have ample opportunity to become comfortable with the unfamiliar content? Will there people to help you acquire any new knowledge/skills that will be needed or will you be on your own to figure it all out for yourself.

    4. Is there much likelihood that you will be able to develop new classes or branch out or in some other way so that your job will eventually include the teaching of classes that are more appealing to you? Can you make the job interesting and worthwhile enough to compensate for the downside?

    5. Do the current maternal-child educators look entrenched in their positions? Is there any reasonable hope that getting your foot in the door now will lead you into their positions someday in the not-too-distant future? A good friend of mine recently took a faculty job teaching adult med-surg when she is really a peds nurse. She took the job just to get her foot in the door. By the time classes started, the peds instructor had resigned -- so my friend never had to actually teach adult med-surg!

    Just a few thoughts. Congratulations!

    llg
  7. by   Little One2
    Your decision depends on what you want to do.

    There is good advice here posted. You will always be learning. Give it a try. See how it goes.
  8. by   RNonsense
    I can't add anything here! Go with your gut and good luck! Let us know what you decide!
  9. by   Q.
    Thanks for your advice everyone.

    I accepted the offer.
  10. by   RNonsense
    That's great! When do you start??
  11. by   llg
    Congratulations! I hope you enjoy it.

    There are lots of good books out there on the topic of staff development ... but here are 2 quick "how to" practical references that are recent and fairly inexpensive.

    1. "Getting Started in Clinical and Nursing Staff Development" 2nd Edition ... published by the National Nursing Staff Development Association. I assume it can be ordered over their website.

    2. "Staff Development Nursing Secrets" Edited by Krisen O'Shea and published last year by Hanley & Belfus, Inc. Again, I assume they have a website.

    Good luck,
    llg
  12. by   Stargazer
    Congratulations, Susy.

    We wanna hear all about the new job.
  13. by   delirium
    Originally posted by Susy K
    Thanks for your advice everyone.

    I accepted the offer.
    Awesome. That's my girl.
  14. by   Q.
    llg,
    Thanks for the book suggestions! I love getting in touch with books regarding a new area of nursing. It helps tremendously with the transition.

    I don't have a start date yet as I haven't given notice here yet. My director has been out of town and is unavailable until next week.

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