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Guidance on Pediatric Nurse Residency Programs

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kiacon510 kiacon510 (New) New

Just a bit of background: My ultimate goal is Neonatal NP. I am a soon to be undergrad at a state school. The nursing program at this institution is well known in the state but probably not on a national scale.

1. How difficult is it to enter pediatric nurse residencies? How big of a roll (if any) does prestige of undergrad institution play in acceptance into a residency program?

I'm sure this all varies by hospital and institution, so if you could be specific to your experience that would be great.

2. The number one line I see on just about every site I visit is: "Strong applicants prove passion during undergrad".

My idea of showing passion: outstanding grades, gaining clinical experience (volunteering, working as an CNA , PCT, etc), membership and leadership in campus organizations pertaining to nursing.

Is there anything I'm missing? How does one show passion during undergrad in a way that would grab the attention of those responsible for hiring new grad interns?

Programs of Interest to me:

*St. Louis Children's Hospital (I would love to move to St Louis)

*Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt (considering their grad program)

*Johns Hopkins Hospital (Read that this program is great.. and it's Johns Hopkins.. i mean come on lol)

Children's Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA)

Children's Hospital of Orange County (CHOC)

Lucile Packard Children's Hospital - Stanford

*Children's Health Care of Atlanta (CHOA) (Current state of residence)

Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)

Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC

Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago

Children's National Health System

Boston Children's Hospital

[COLOR=#333333]* Programs I'm significantly interested in

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If you have any pointers or anecdotes to share I would LOOOOVE it!

I am a soon to be new grad entering into a pediatric residency so while I don't have any first hand knowledge of hiring, I can tell you what I learned on the way and what I think helped me get my position.

1) To my knowledge, prestige of a program has very little impact on hiring processes. A good relationship between the hospital and school might help, but these residency programs( especially the ones you listed) have tons of applicants from different prestigious schools. Rather what's more important to differenciate yourself is your experiences during school. Some hospitals also prefer BSNs over ADNs, and others dont.

It's difficult to get an interview, and I was lucky to get mine so make sure that you have a back up plan and don't put all of your eggs into one basket!

2) While CNA/PCT would be great expierence, keep in mind that it's often hard to get a job in pediatrics in those roles, the hospital I had clinical at didn't even have any CNAs in any pediatric units. If yours does that could be great, but adult work could still be helpful to gain general nursing experience.

Another thing that is helpful is to get into a nurse externship. It will help you get a relationship with a hospital, and if the unit you extern at is the one you want to work at it'll get you a foot in the door for interview.

If your school has a preceptorship, do that in pediatrics if at all possible to show interest.

You can pursue research opportunities in pediatrics if your school had honors work.

Leadership roles are good for any job interview because it shows organization, time management and motivation. Start early so you have something to put on your applications for externships.

Good luck with school!