FNP - Thinking ahead - your experiences?

  1. I'm starting an FNP program (part-time) this fall, and plan to finish over 3-5 years. I will have the opportunity to get clinical hours at a small-town clinic, a larger area hospital (also my employer), a larger clinic with internal med and family practice opportunities, a low-income clinic, and rather rural settings. I'm torn at the moment when I think of what I want in the future - a hospitalist-type role, a rural FNP position with some loan payback possibilities, home-town clinic, etc - of course, that would be if the opportunities are there when I graduate.

    I want to take advantage of a variety of settings for clinicals to help me decide what I want when I'm done. Because I'm going a PT route, I'd like to do the majority of hours, or last 2 semesters, where I'd like to work when I'm all done with the process. Then again, I don't want to ignore a good clinical experience early on or get stuck in a 100+ hour clinical in an area I don't want to be towards the end when I could use that time to build relationships in another setting.

    Could you share your clinical experiences with me and also how that worked with your eventual employment opportunities / current position? Did you vary your clinicals, or do them all within the same area / system? Is it better when interviewing to have a broad base of clinical experiences, or a more focused experience? What prepared you best for your current setting? Am I thinking too far ahead (I do tend to over-plan, however that hasn't exactly hurt me in the past)??

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Visit mom2cka profile page

    About mom2cka, BSN, MSN, APRN, NP

    Joined: Apr '02; Posts: 330; Likes: 110
    FNP; from US
    Specialty: FNP


  3. by   MissDoodaw
    Hi, I am a planner type person and am just finishing FNP school (1st week in Aug) and have barely begun applying so go from that perspective.
    I was an ER RN -this seems to be very attractive to a wide range of employers and helpful in primary care settings, but not so much as a hospitalist I would definitely need lots of training to do this. I was offered a position at one of my clinicals and invited to apply at another, but home and hubby are far away -1,500 miles from school so that didn't work out so well, so here I am applying.

    I have applied to about 12-15 jobs. Interviewed for 3. Offered one so far, turned down as wasn't great fit for me. (moving on to the 2nd round of inteviews in the other two). As a new NP there has been discussion in my interviews re: what I did in my clinical rotations (peds, ob/gyn w/ CNM, correctional facility, infectious disease DO, presitgious cardiology clinic, and neighborhood internal medicine primary care 25% HMO, 25% medicare. I also did some time at a retail clinic which was changed due to low traffic). and how my clinical expereinces have prepared me for the future position I am interviewing for..
    So I suggest a wide variety, it allows me to interview for all types of positions. My only drawback is I did not do a clinical in the ER, so my suturing, I+D, splinting, etc is lame to non-existent (knowledge but little experience).
    The best experiences for me include the internal medicine primary care office, got comfortable with many skills (PAPs, SBE, complete physicals, labs, billing, )complex to acute care -I loved this office and cried many times that I had to leave!
    I think that the range of my educational experiences has been very thorough and has given me a more in depth preparation than I would have had otherwise, so I encourage variety.
    Seems like a good idea to do the last clinical where you want to be employed but last 2 semesters? Drawbacks would be -one other experience you are missing out on, perhaps less training time once you sign on as a paid employee, perhaps miss another offer from somewhere else,
    Then again... the educational value for me in my clinicals was in direct proportion to the enthusiasm my preceptor had for teaching/working with students probally more than focus of area..
    So that's just my 2 cents -hope it was helpful to you!