BSN - easier job search for new grads?

  1. Hi all! As a new grad, I found the job search difficult because most hospitals are looking for experienced nurses instead of training nursing newbies. Most hospitals in need of nurses looking for new grads will take any RN degree out there. However, some specialties like the ER, NICU, PICU, and OR, are more competitive for new grads to get into than other nursing areas. In those cases, do you think BSN grads have the advantage over ASN nurses? I was just curious if anyone had difficulty getting into a specialty new grad position and thinks their degree helped or hindered them. I know some hospitals pay BSN new grads more, but not any hospitals around me do that (at least not to my knowledge). I am a BSN grad and not sure if it gave me a job hunting advantage. I do know that of the 15 new grads hired in my NICU, only 3 were ASN. Although the ASN grads did beat out potential BSN grad applicants so my unit was looking more at other things than just the degree (which I think is how it should be). I was just wondering what you all think or if you had any experience with hospitals hiring BSN nurses over ASN nurses just because of the degree difference and not the experience or other factors.
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   ckc6977
    Personally, I think it depends on the area in which you live. In my area, my DIPLOMA based program is well-known and would probably beat out a ADN or BSN new grad easily. Also, Diploma and ADN programs have more clinical hour-credits because they are more clinically based programs. Sometimes this can also appeal to certain hospitals.

    If I had it to do all over again, I would choose to obtain my BSN. When I was searching for the right school for me, my Diploma program told me that you only needed your BSN if you wanted to become part of management (nurse manager, etc). Little did I know that couldn't be further from the truth! You can't teach, perform research, etc. It's much more than not being able to direct others!

    GL in your search!
  4. by   Tweety
    Here in Tampa Bay, the BSN programs have the same number of clinical hours than the ADN, unlike the town from the poster above me, so making a blanket statement that ADNs get more clinical hours isn't true.

    I do agree that might depend on where you live. In some areas of the country ADNs are in management positions and do the hiring. Here the managers all have to have BSNs, so they might look more favorably on a BSN.
  5. by   llg
    Quote from ckc6977
    Personally, I think it depends on the area in which you live. In my area, my DIPLOMA based program is well-known and would probably beat out a ADN or BSN new grad easily. Also, Diploma and ADN programs have more clinical hour-credits because they are more clinically based programs. Sometimes this can also appeal to certain hospitals.

    If I had it to do all over again, I would choose to obtain my BSN. When I was searching for the right school for me, my Diploma program told me that you only needed your BSN if you wanted to become part of management (nurse manager, etc). Little did I know that couldn't be further from the truth! You can't teach, perform research, etc. It's much more than not being able to direct others!

    GL in your search!
    Except for the part about Diploma programs and ADN programs having more clinical hours, I agree. It really does depend on where you live and the quality of your local programs.

    I also am happy to read someone saying that a BSN is needed for more than just management jobs. So many people seem to think that management is the only reason to get a BSN -- and that's only a small piece of the picture. A lot of jobs in the clinical and educational realms require a minimum of a BSN.

    As for the clinical hours thing ... that just doesn't hold up nation wide. A lot of BSN programs have more clinical hours than many ADN programs. And don't forget ... it's not just the quanitity of hours that counts, it's the quality. A lot of the ADN programs where I live have clinicals in their first semester that are practically useless. They count as "hours in the hospital," but the students do little more than observe. The local BSN program has skills lab in their sophomore year, so the clinical rotations in the junior year are much more advanced than those of the ADN program. In their senior year, the BSN students get a 120 hour practicum during which they function almost like a full RN ... but the ADN students are still back learning the skills that the BSN students learned a semester earlier.

    The situation in my area with the local programs may be very different from the situation in your area. That's my point. You can't make many broad generalizations. You have to look at each local community and each school.

    In my area, one of the local BSN programs is highly respected and we LOVE to hire their graduates. The other BSN program is exceptionally weak and we are hesitant to hire their graduates.
    Last edit by llg on Nov 20, '07
  6. by   ckc6977
    Just to clarify: my generalizations about diploma, ADN, and BSN programs were all based on my experience here (in the RTP area of NC). After re-reading my post, I only prefaced "in my area" once and I can see how my post can be misleading to other readers.
  7. by   hersheykisses01
    I live in the NY tristate area and have a BSN. The job market for new grads is really bad out here. with that said, i dont think BSN has a major advantage. I'm constantly being told we're looking for experienced nurses. At this point, I've started looking at almost anything. You dont want to stay unemployed until the dream jobs comes around because recruiters start to look at the newer grads and they start forgetting about the may/june grads.
  8. by   HM2VikingRN
    Check out the VAMC system. I know that there are excellent new grad programs at most VA hospitals. (I know in MPLS that the nurse recruiter looks for BSNs first but in my new grad class there were a lot of ADNs.)
  9. by   blackdogm3
    It's happening in Philadelphia also. It seems that it doesn't matter if you have a BSN or ADN. There so many openings, but all for experienced nurses. Therefore, BSN new grad are also having a hard time find jobs as well as ADN.
  10. by   UVA Grad Nursing
    I've seen that many Magnet hospitals (and those hospitals that are seeking Magnet status) are hiring new BSN grads over ADN/diploma graduates. One of the measurements for Magnet certification are the # of RNs with BSNs, MSNs, etc. I've known of one Magnet candidate hospital that was denied an site visit primarity because they had more ADN/diploma nurses than BSN-prepared nurses on staff. The ADN/BSN staffing ratio is a topic of discussion in staffing professional nursing organizations (ANCC, AONE, etc). I travel with many nurse recruiters, and the Magnet movement is mandating that some places hire mostly BSN-prepared new grads (to boost the ratio).
  11. by   chicookie
    It depends on the hospital too for example my hospital is a magnet so a certain % of nurses have to be BSN. The childrens hospital that is also here is so small that they refuse to hire ASN because even losing one BSN puts them under that %.
    Now the important thing when it comes down to it is experiance if you were a CNA or did other types of nursing that greatly increases your chances.
    If you already work there its alot easier to find a job too. That is how I got in.

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