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At a Crossroads

Nurse Beth   (160 Views | 1 Replies)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Columnist) Writer Innovator Expert Nurse

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

18 Followers; 100 Articles; 233,958 Profile Views; 2,024 Posts

I am at a cross road in my career. I have been a nurse for almost 7 years, 6 in the ER. I am currently working on my MSN in nursing education. I enjoy my own education and hope to earn a doctorate. I enjoy teaching, but I also have some leadership skills I'd like to develop as well.

That is what I love about our chosen field, so many opportunities. As far as career advancement, I am not totally clear on what I want to do (teach nursing school vs being a clinical educator vs going into administration). I hope doors will open along the way through determination and hard work. However, I currently work at a small community hospital, I do some relief charge and precept students/new hires. I am very involved with our union as well. But, there is little opportunity for advancement. I am on one committee for patient improvement, however admin gives us very little support on implementing any change.

There is a revolving door of administrators and management, the "suits" place little value on nursing education and support, and deny inservice hours for nurses to even work on any patient or nursing improvement. Along with that, that the acuity of patients isn't as high as I have seen in other hospitals. So I feel that my opportunity to grow clinically as well as advance my career are very limited. The problem is this is the first job I have had that I enjoy coming to work because of how great the team work and community among nurses is. The patient population is also wonderful. And as I said before I am very involved in our union. I feel vested here, but I also worry that my career won't grow here. What do I do?

Dear At a Crossroads,

I love your belief that doors open through determination and hard work. I believe the same.

There's also strategy needed for professional development. You need to be in a practice setting that offers opportunities for advancement. You are an engaged employee in an organization that doesn't value employee engagement. It's a shame when organizations are blind to their best resources- nurses like yourself.

As you are growing in your career, it's beneficial to experience different organizations- different patient populations, different administrations, different cultures. At 7 years in, and about to get your Masters degree, you are on the the cusp of change. Once you have an advanced degree, doors will open up for you.

To take your career to the next level, you will need to make a move. Start reading the career ads on Indeed to see what's out there, what interests you, and what the requirements are. Your journey will be a function of opportunity and your passion and abilities. Read the signs along the way as they present.

I'm excited thinking about what's ahead for you! 🙂

Best wishes,

Nurse Beth

Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

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NRSKarenRN has 40 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion.

5 Followers; 10 Articles; 14,658 Posts; 161,732 Profile Views

Your next step is to explore the world of nursing outside your current facility. Consider joining a chapter of the Emergency Nurses Association https://www.ena.org/, nursing union parent organization  or state nursing association.  This will expose you to how other facilities function, provide professional contacts at other facilities/organizations and educational opportunities in your area along with support for career transition.

Best wishes for your future. We need Nursing Educators who can positively support students and new grads to grow our profession.

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