Thinking about AF nursing & have ?'s - page 2

Hey all, I am an ER nurse with 5 years of ER nursing experience, 3 years in a level 1 trauma center. I have been thinking about a career/life change and joining the AF to continue ER nursing. I... Read More

  1. by   jfratian
    If you really want to join, you should fork over the couple hundred bucks. I think the CEN will make a difference. You could get in without it, but it will help you hedge your bets. The AF cares enough about it to offer $20K per year for nurses who have it in resign bonuses.

    I think there's a good chance that either the chief nurse or the ER consultant interviewers are going to ask why an experienced ER nurse doesn't have a CEN.
  2. by   jfratian
    O-2 (1st Lt) is not quite the bottom. You do make about $500 more a month than a brand new O-1 (2d Lt).

    The only time where you have cell phone restrictions is the first couple weeks of COT (your initial officer training).
  3. by   Vona86
    Yep. I never even carried my phone with me...I just left it in my room and called my family at night...Unless you are the social officer and you can carry it and take "pictures"
  4. by   Pixie.RN
    Quote from bafelly
    Yes I have considered it however, my current hospital does not pay for it or offer bonuses if you pass to help off set the cost so, no real motivation to fork out the $200+ right now.
    If you are serious about the military, that might be motivation enough — it is extremely difficult to commission as an ER nurse without it, it is seen as the gold standard across the military services for ER nurses. 17 slots is very competitive. Just a suggestion! Either way, hopefully they will value your experience.
  5. by   bafelly
    I am serious about the military, there just has not been a real motivator in my civilian life to take the test. There are surrounding hospitals that offer $1k bonuses and reimbursement for passing but my employer does not offer anything like that. I am thinking maybe in August or September about taking it.
    Also, I do not have to have my phone with me every second but would like to speak with my family in the evenings so I think as long as I can do that I would be ok. I did not realize that was not the bottom, thanks for pointing that out.
  6. by   bafelly
    Did you go into the AF or work your way toward flight nursing? That is my end goal. Just wondering how the AF works with that.
  7. by   Vona86
    I commissioned as a flight nurse. Active duty you need 2 years of experience. Civilian you only need 6 months of experience.
  8. by   bafelly
    So were you a flight nurse before you commissioned as one? I have almost 5 years of experience (ER & ICU) no experience flying
  9. by   Vona86
    Nope...just ICU experience
  10. by   bafelly
    If you do not mind me asking what they DQ'd you for & how recent it was? My recruiter said he thinks I am going to be ok (I had a recent physical and passed with flying colors all labs and everything and I even had my doc write a letter recommending that she felt I was ok to join the AF). Trying to get a feel for MEPS but my recruiter says it all depends on which way the wind is blowing.
  11. by   bafelly
    Quote from Vona86
    I went to COT in October 2016. It wasn't horrible. The first day you report there is a lot of yelling but at the end of each day (which is about 7pm) you go back to your room and have until 11pm to get to bed. Every night you will talk to your family and I was able to get most of my homework done during the lectures and I went to bed around 9pm. Wake up is around 430am. I would definitely try to get Social Officer or Logistics Officer - I never had to do a weekly Memo....
    Since you have commissioned fairly recently, how was the interview? My recruiter said in a meeting last week its "very casual" and even to dress casually. I found that kind of odd, but he knows more than me. I have just never considered interviews as "casual" or dressed casually. I usually dress professionally and take it pretty serious.
  12. by   jfratian
    Bafelly, in case you are looking at flight too, know that AF flight nursing is not the same thing as civilian flight nursing. The AF has different types of flight crews for different things, unlike the 1-size fits all civilian role.

    AF flight nursing is really more focused on the plane and the safety of passengers and crew. Your patients are all stable and most are walkie talkies. The fact that it requires a few years of acute care experience is a bit misleading. Flight nursing is a full time specialty.

    There are other teams, such as CCATT, that take the sicker, less stable patients. CCATT is typically a part time gig. You often do it for a few months and then go back to your ICU.
  13. by   Vona86
    The interview was very causal. Just nice slacks and flat shoes. We were able to launch a C-130 mission that day so your clothes will smell! That is mostly why