Advice from hiring managers in peds/PICU?

  1. Hi there everybody!!

    Just another new graduate BSN here; (taking my NCLEX tomorrow!)

    I've always wanted to work in pediatrics, but unfortunately, my school was unable to place me in a pediatrics unit, let alone a PICU, for my senior preceptorship. However, I was lucky enough to have a preceptorship in a high acuity ICU in the regional trauma center, and had a great experience.

    However, now I'm looking for jobs in the PICU, and most require that I had my senior preceptorship in a PICU, or at least pediatrics. I'm starting to become worried, because I've heard from many people that if you don't start in pediatrics, you'll never end up there.

    To any hiring managers out there, or anyone that can provide some insight... What can I do to make myself more appealing to managers in a pediatric setting? I'm happy to work up to the PICU from a med-surg unit, but even those seem to require a senior preceptorship in pediatrics.

    For background, I've helped with volunteer research at a local major children's hospital, I've volunteered with homeless kiddos in my area, and I'm starting a volunteer position at a pediatric palliative care center in the area. I've taken PALS, and will be signing up for NRP ASAP. I also worked for 6 months in a local SNF (for older adults).

    I really really want this, and I'd even be happy with just an interview.. but I've applied to about 10 jobs/new grad programs, and I think my lack of acute peds experience is holding me back.

    Any tips and tricks?
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  2. 3 Comments

  3. by   Guy in Babyland
    Many hospitals will not consider you until you have your license. Once you get your license, apply to the PICU and any other position in the children's hospital. It is much easier to make an internal transfer. If you are willing to move to Louisville, you can start out in PICU pretty easily. They hire many new grads.
  4. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    All of the postings for my unit (PICU) state a minimum of 2 years acute pediatrics experience is required but those with a senior practicum in PICU or pediatrics will be considered. Most of our new hires over the last several years have been new grads with none of the above. Pass that exam and apply to everything! Then when you're called for an interview, sell your non-clinical exposure to kids... you might be surprised.
  5. by   jrt4
    Don't be discouraged!!! We hire internal transfers all of the time into the acute care floor. We haven't had the opportunity to do so in the PICU but we would be open to it!!! My advice would be if you can't find a pediatric acute care unit or PICU to start looking in an adult ICU setting. This will set you up for an easier transition to PICU. The best thing to do is get your foot in the door because pediatric programs can be pretty competitive. We hire experienced non-pediatric nurses to the acute care floor all of the time and they do quite well!

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