how to get entry level health care jobs

U.S.A. Arizona


Hello all,

I finished my third semester of nursing school earlier this month and I have been desperately looking for a summer/fall job as a PCT or aide/transporter at pretty much all of the nearby hospitals in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. I have applied to about 25 jobs as of late and I have so far been unable to score anything.

I don't have experience in this field (aside from what I had done in clinicals) nor do I have a CNA license or anything like that, but I am very eager to learn and I want to gain some experience before I am shoved out as a nurse when I graduate. I have talked to a friend of mine who works as a nurse @ one of the Banner locations and she said they don't hire non-experienced PCTs.

My message is for those who have applied as PCTs (or some other related health care job) with no experience and were able to secure a job, because I really would like to know what else I can do to make myself more marketable. I've got letters of recommendation and references that I can use but I am at a real head scratch as to how to progress. I have contacted a lot of these employers by email/phone regarding the status of these positions and they've all stated that "it's all updated online and someone will contact you if they're interested" but, by the time I check on these positions most of them have been rejected. I have applied mainly @ HonorHealth and Banner. I am all ears for any tips/thoughts anyone has.

Thanks for chiming in, and sorry if this message sounds desperate!

You need to look for employers in great need SNFs, possibly. Acute care CNA jobs are more sought after, so why would they hire someone with no experience who also doesn't plan to stay long?

Specializes in Psych; Med/Surg.

In my personal experience, I would suggest that you try to work in psych. I know it is not a popular field, but I was not certified when I got my first job at a psychiatric hospital. I ended up on the dementia unit and loved it. You can get a lot of training that can help you to learn the skills that go along with being a CNA/PCT. You can also learn a lot from the nurses on the unit. I have learned a lot and I'm still learning. I was even able to use that experience to help with my CNA certification paperwork, which was accepted and I was able to test and pass for it. There are other avenues, you just have to spend some more time looking.

I will say that you have taken a great first step by asking for help and guidance on this board :)

Obtain a CNA/HHA certificate or apply at a long term care facility as an NA and obtain a CNA certificate through their in-house training program.

I didn't even think about this to be honest. I'll scour around and spam applications.

Specializes in Neuro, Telemetry.

It will be pretty difficult to get any job this close to graduation. It would take about a months to get through the interview process, background check and drug screen, and get a start date. Then they have to orient you. Then like 3 months later you will graduate as a nurse and may or may not stick around.

You may be ok at a LTC/SNF, but they would require a CNA/LNA. Summer internships are applied for before spring starts so those are missed. Might be best to just hang tight and wait to graduate.

+ Add a Comment