Trapped in a Rural Hospital Scholarship

  1. Hello, I am a recent MSN graduate with a focus in Nurse Education. A few years back, I applied for the hospital scholarship and was accepted. At the end of my graduate degree, I was paying out of pocket because I'd exhausted the amount of money that I could use, but was told the 2 years does not begin until I obtained my MSN degree.
    Shortly after I received the scholarship, the hospital was taken over by a large corporation. This corporation added their own scholarship, opening the doors for opportunities at their other facilities. My scholarship limits me to this very small rural hospital. I am just beginning the 2 year time frame that I owe them. I have applied for 3 Clinical Nurse Educator positions here at my hospital since obtaining my MSN. I have been passed over every time due to lack of experience. I have been here at this hospital since 2010, although I am not from the area, I feel that I often network and have proved to work well with others. I performed my practicum in our Education Department, and have been asked back on several occasions to teach small courses to new nurses.
    At this point, I feel defeated. I feel like I cannot grow within my current facility and the scholarship is holding me back. My scholarship was for $18k (I received my BSN during the MSN program) and so I debate leaving. Two years is a long time to apply and wonder will I get passed over again and again. How am I supposed to gain experience if I cannot leave and if my hospital wont give that experience to me?
    Each time the interview seems to go great, they tell me that they will reach out soon; I send my thank you note only to get the response that a better candidate has come along. I know others have gotten out of the "old hospital" scholarship and I know others who tried and could not. I just do not know what to do, wait out the two years or fight the scholarship due to lack of opportunity to utilize my degree?
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  2. Poll: How should I approach the rural scholarship ?

    • Stick it out: Work the 2 years, even if MSN level jobs continue to pass me over

      0% 0
    • Fight the Power: Argue that the scholarship is unjust because of its' limitations

      0% 0
    • Out with the Old, In with the New: Ask if I can have the new scholarship, so that I can apply at other corporate owned facilities

      0% 0
    0 Votes
  3. 5 Comments

  4. by   Pixie.RN
    I am confused - what kind of APN are you? Did you do an NP program as well?

    I would continue to seek out those education opportunities (being asked to teach classes) until you get some measurable experience as an educator. Your other option is to fork over the scholarship funds, which doesn't sound like much fun. If you accepted the other scholarship, you are bound by that acceptance and I doubt you can switch to the other.

    What kind of unit are you on full-time? Look for opportunities there - in-services, etc. - to highlight your skill set.
  5. by   ForensicNurse2997
    My advanced practice is in Forensic Nursing (AFN-BC) but I have a MSN (Education Track). I currently work managing the sexual assault and domestic violence cases at my hospital. I work in the Clinical Resource Department and I am often mistaken for a social worker (ultimately I am/supposed to be a Case Manager working with sexual assault/dv patients). Unfortunately, my position will be phasing out (it has already been mentioned, my position works under a grant). The DV cases and sexual violence cases are low in my area, so therefore I have been taking those cases and working as a Case Manager for the ICU as well. But the cases for sexual assault and dv has been so low (which is good for the community, bad for my career) that I might as well just be the ICU case manager only. The SANEs and the advocates will be transitioning the patient into safe places, after exams, from the hospital and I will no longer be consulted for this (unless I perform the exam). I should mention that ANCC has recently decided to retire the AFN-BC, so nothing but good news (insert sarcasm).
    Last edit by ForensicNurse2997 on Nov 21
  6. by   JaxJax5423
    Oh man. I don't want to be rude, but it looks like you really specialized and that may be limiting your opportunities. Although forensics is much needed and I have the upmost respect for the role, it may not translate over into the general hospital nursing population you would be educating. Your education is impressive, but like PP said have some MEASURABLE experience/examples. Join committees, volunteer to teach some things, precept and train. Good luck. I'd stick out the 2 years. You can always apply for a side adjunct teaching job in academia, right?
  7. by   ForensicNurse2997
    Thank you Jax,

    I must agree, I am not in the area for my specialty. I used to work in Baltimore and there I thrived as a Forensic Nurse. I have considered looking into the local community college, maybe I can gain experience there. I will say that I have worked in other areas in conjunction with my specialty. I worked in the PACU (just 2 years ago) for 5 years. I was able to take call as a Forensic Nurse Examiner and before I became a FNE, I ran a psychiatric research unit. So I am so much more than a Forensic Nurse. I will continue teaching courses at the hospital and maybe look into the local community college. Thank you for the advice.
  8. by   not.done.yet
    Is there anything in your scholarship contract that states what happens if your job goes away due to no fault of your own? ie: layoff, position eliminated? Often that can be a way out.

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