Hello everyone! I just joined this site today but have followed it for quite some time. I wanted to share my story because I see a lot of people hoping to start in L&D right after graduation and devestated when they can't.
I graduated from nursing school with my ADN in March of 2011 and took and passed the NCLEX in July. After graduating nursing school I knew that L&D was absolutley where I wanted to be, however there were absolutely no open positions anywhere near me. So I then decided I would just try to get hospital experience and started applying to every hospital in my area and even ones 1.5-2 hrs away, and nothing. Not one call for an interview. I spent hours and hours on the computer applying, calling HR of different hospitals and had no luck at all. Finally I decided I would investigate LTC and started applying to different ones. Still I was only called for one interview 1.5 hours from my house. I landed the job and started right away.
I was at the LTC facility for only a month and a half before I finally got the call for a hospital position. I went on the interview and was told I was being considered for the Progressive Respiratory Care Unit which was an ICU step down that dealt with many long term vent patients. The interview went awesome and the manager hired me on the spot. I was so excited, this was the acute care experience I needed for L&D! I gave my two weeks at the LTC facility and started the PRCU job. I planned to work in this unit for the required 18 months and then apply to L&D once my unit obligation was complete.
This month is month 14 for me and my hours have been reduced drastically and feeding my family was becoming difficult so I decided to look elsewhere. While searching for a full time position I came accross a full time nights in the L&D at a different hospital. I applied right way and was called for an interview 3 days later. I went to the interview and it was the best interview I have ever been on, I was again offered the job on the spot. I start on the 26th of November!
I am more excited than anyone will ever know, but it took some time and work to get here. I know as a new grad you think I am going to hold out for L&D. While that sounds wonderful, sometimes it just isn't realistic. my best advice is do what you have to do. PRCU wasn't my dream job but I was also surpirsed to find that I loved it for the most part. I met some awesome people along the way and I am actually sad to be leaving. Just be open to other possibilities while on the quest for L&D, you might just have a good time!