Graduate Nurse needing advise

  1. Hello,
    I am going to graduate from an RN program in a few weeks and have been offered two jobs so far. One is a surgical nurse position with great hours. The other is a a staff nurse position on a med/surg floor with crummy hours. My dilema is that if I take the surgical nurse position I may forget all the clinical skills I have learned in school. Can anyone give me some advise on this. I have heard from others that all graduate RNs should start on a med/surg floor to get the experience. What do you think.
    MedicGA
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    About MedicGA

    Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 13

    7 Comments

  3. by   VegRN
    Quote from MedicGA
    Hello,
    I am going to graduate from an RN program in a few weeks and have been offered two jobs so far. One is a surgical nurse position with great hours. The other is a a staff nurse position on a med/surg floor with crummy hours. My dilema is that if I take the surgical nurse position I may forget all the clinical skills I have learned in school. Can anyone give me some advise on this. I have heard from others that all graduate RNs should start on a med/surg floor to get the experience. What do you think.
    MedicGA
    Well, if you take the med/surg position you are going to forget all the OR/psych/rehab/L&D/dialysis stuff you learned in school.

    I wouldn't worry to much about trying to get a broad experience base in the beginning. No matter where you go, you are not going to use every single skill set you learned in school. You are going to forget at least some of it.

    Maybe med/surg is what you want to do or what you need to do to transition to a different section of nursing. Myself, I started out in Med/surg because that is what I wanted to do. I learned a lot and became interested in a specialty because of my experiences there. Other classmates went to the ER, L&D, OR, psych and are just as happy there. Getting a year of med/surg would not have necessarily benefited them.

    There is so much more to nursing than general med/surg. Think about your future goals and what you want. Look at the pros and cons of those jobs. What does your heart tell you?
  4. by   bill4745
    Med/surg teaches you more than individual skills-it teaches you how to organize the care of several patients during the day (time management). how to delegate (assuming you have aids),, etc. Are you going to get this in OR?
  5. by   KellNY
    Med/Surg: Boo! Hiss! (that's just my personal bias though)

    If you're totally unsure what you want to do as an RN-try out the medsurg for the reasons bill listed.

    BUT-If you know OR is your thang, go for it-because VegRN had some excellent points in his/her post.

    Either way-good luck!
    Last edit by KellNY on May 1, '07
  6. by   PICURN74
    whatever job feels right is what I would suggest. I have heard that you need to go to a floor for a year before anything else and in some cases I agree. I personally went straight to an ICU after graduation and wouldn't have changed it for the world, although I had an amazing orientation program and a great preceptor to run to. The first year is about honing skills and procedures but most importantly it is about gaining confidence in yourself, learning what is normal and what is not and learning that when something doesn't feel right it probably isn't. You will be suprised how much you will remember even if you don't use the information everyday.
  7. by   suzanne4
    You definitely learn time management in the OR. As well as having five things that you need to be doing at the same time.

    Where do you actually wish to work? And you are not going to lose any skills any different than if you went to any area. You are going to be inserting more foley catheters,; even IVs, if you work weekends at all or have to cover off shift; become very proficient at assessing your patient, etc.

    That one year of Med-Surg is needed is not the norm for any specialty area anymore, even the ICUs. Also depends on the nurse, as well.

    Best of luck to you.
  8. by   dschueler
    Where in GA are you from?? I am from GA I am homesick bad!!!

    Anyway, I would so love to have the surgical nurse position!!! That is my dream. If you ever wanted to switch, any hospital would put you in an intern type position and train you or update your skills until you are comfortable. I have seen tons and tons of ads out here in CA and they all say....."even if you have been out of nursing for 10yrs, we will train you"....the shortage is so great, no worries you will be fine!! Surgical training is hard to get, so go for it



    CONGRATS!!!!!!!!

    I can't wait for it to be me!!!

    Deborah
  9. by   Roy Fokker
    Personally:

    * I want to work pediatrics. Eventually pediatric emergency. Or pediatric surgery.
    * As a fresh grad, pretty much any and all jobs I sought needed "experience".
    * It is my personal opinion that fresh grads should not work critical care: 12 weeks of "orientation" is not the same as 12 weeks of "working by yourself".

    I was offered a job as a dialysis nurse at a respected center.
    And I was also offered this position here where I'm working at right now.

    I chose this one. Technically it's supposed to be Ortho/Surgical floor. But hospital has been cutting back on some departments so we end up getting everything under the sun - medical, oncology, tele ... you name it!

    So I'm getting a wide variety of experience. And I hope to capitalize on it when I make the eventual shift to pediatrics.



    Bottom line? What do you want to do? And if that is hard to decide think: "where do I want to be in 5-10 years from now?"


    cheers,

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