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Advice for Tampa ADN Graduate

Nurse Beth   (230 Views | 1 Replies)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Columnist) Educator Writer Innovator Expert Nurse

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho.

19 Followers; 114 Articles; 238,085 Profile Views; 2,163 Posts

Dear Nurse Beth,

I am in an ADN RN program and will be graduating December 2020. I am planning to move to a different city in my state (Tampa, FL) and my goal is to find a residency program. I have noticed a couple hospitals either do not have a residency or they require/prefer new BSN RN grads. I would love to go into a residency because I know it will give me the extra education I need. I have been an LPN for two years in a SNF and I do not think it will benefit me too much as an RN. I plan to apply to many jobs just to be safe. Should I just consider looking into non-hospitals positions or non-residency positions?

Dear Just to be Safe,

You are wise to start looking now, in 4th semester. Many students wait until after graduation, but the market is competitive and that puts them behind in the game.

As far as having your ADN, If a job posting says BSN preferred, apply. If it says BSN required, do not apply.

You are so right about the benefits of a residency. That would be my first choice for you. The opportune time to learn your foundational practice skills in acute care is as a new grad.

You say you are planning to apply to many jobs. Good plan. But do not blast out generic applications. Each resume and cover letter should be individualized to the particular organization. Learn the major service lines, the mission and values statements.

Especially as a new grad competing with a lot of other equally inexperienced new grads, you must know how to stand out. The beauty is that most new grads do not know how to do this.

The key is to align your skills with their needs. As an example, if you speak Spanish and are applying to a hospital with a Spanish-speaking demographic, you would highlight that skill.

Likewise, be a solution to their problems. If the hospital recruits new grads but has high turnover, maybe because of not being in a destination location, convince them you are not a flight risk (family or love interest in the area).

LPN Background

Having an LPN background is a plus, but a tempered plus. Most nurse managers acknowledge on the plus side that LPNs and RNs have overlapping skill sets, but on the potentially minus side, different mindsets. Typically RNs start with a blank slate but LPNS have to shed  their LPN mindset and embrace their new role. This I know, because I was an LVN... and a hiring manager :).

If you land a job as an RN in sub-acute, your background will be helpful and you will still have a lot to learn.

Assigned Reading

I am going to list some very helpful articles for you to read and also recommend you read my book, listed below. It will teach you how to write a compelling cover letter and resume, what to say and what not to say on an interview, how to assemble a portfolio, and most importantly- several examples of how to be memorable and stand out-  which is really the key to your success right now. It's written from years of insider experience- mine- and the passion to share these skills with nurses like yourself to help you succeed.

I have some reading homework for you! 🙂

For general application tips, read New Grad- How Can I Get a Job if No One Gives me a Chance?

Resumes and Cover Letters

You need to understand how applicant tracking software (ATS) works and how to optimize your application using keywords from the job posting. Read

 

Interviews

For  interview coaching, read 

For questions you should be asking of an employer, read How to Choose My First nursing Job 

 In the meantime, get letters of recommendation from your clinical instructors now, before everyone asks for them. Clinical instructors  have ties and influence in local hospitals. You are moving to Tampa, but nursing is a small world.

Best wishes to you,

Nurse Beth

 

 

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vcRN has 3 years experience as a LPN.

9 Posts; 163 Profile Views

2 hours ago, Nurse Beth said:

Dear Nurse Beth,

I am in an ADN RN program and will be graduating December 2020. I am planning to move to a different city in my state (Tampa, FL) and my goal is to find a residency program. I have noticed a couple hospitals either do not have a residency or they require/prefer new BSN RN grads. I would love to go into a residency because I know it will give me the extra education I need. I have been an LPN for two years in a SNF and I do not think it will benefit me too much as an RN. I plan to apply to many jobs just to be safe. Should I just consider looking into non-hospitals positions or non-residency positions?

Dear Just to be Safe,

You are wise to start looking now, in 4th semester. Many students wait until after graduation, but the market is competitive and that puts them behind in the game.

As far as having your ADN, If a job posting says BSN preferred, apply. If it says BSN required, do not apply.

You are so right about the benefits of a residency. That would be my first choice for you. The opportune time to learn your foundational practice skills in acute care is as a new grad.

You say you are planning to apply to many jobs. Good plan. But do not blast out generic applications. Each resume and cover letter should be individualized to the particular organization. Learn the major service lines, the mission and values statements.

Especially as a new grad competing with a lot of other equally inexperienced new grads, you must know how to stand out. The beauty is that most new grads do not know how to do this.

The key is to align your skills with their needs. As an example, if you speak Spanish and are applying to a hospital with a Spanish-speaking demographic, you would highlight that skill.

Likewise, be a solution to their problems. If the hospital recruits new grads but has high turnover, maybe because of not being in a destination location, convince them you are not a flight risk (family or love interest in the area).

LPN Background

Having an LPN background is a plus, but a tempered plus. Most nurse managers acknowledge on the plus side that LPNs and RNs have overlapping skill sets, but on the potentially minus side, different mindsets. Typically RNs start with a blank slate but LPNS have to shed  their LPN mindset and embrace their new role. This I know, because I was an LVN... and a hiring manager :).

If you land a job as an RN in sub-acute, your background will be helpful and you will still have a lot to learn.

Assigned Reading

I am going to list some very helpful articles for you to read and also recommend you read my book, listed below. It will teach you how to write a compelling cover letter and resume, what to say and what not to say on an interview, how to assemble a portfolio, and most importantly- several examples of how to be memorable and stand out-  which is really the key to your success right now. It's written from years of insider experience- mine- and the passion to share these skills with nurses like yourself to help you succeed.

I have some reading homework for you! 🙂

For general application tips, read New Grad- How Can I Get a Job if No One Gives me a Chance?

Resumes and Cover Letters

You need to understand how applicant tracking software (ATS) works and how to optimize your application using keywords from the job posting. Read

 

Interviews

For  interview coaching, read 

For questions you should be asking of an employer, read How to Choose My First nursing Job 

 In the meantime, get letters of recommendation from your clinical instructors now, before everyone asks for them. Clinical instructors  have ties and influence in local hospitals. You are moving to Tampa, but nursing is a small world.

Best wishes to you,

Nurse Beth

 

 

I appreciate your reply! Your advice has definitely placed my mind at ease and I can figure out my plan. I’m excited to secure a job. Thank you! 

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