How to make myself a better candidate for Navy nursing corps

Specialties Government


Hi all! So I am currently a nurse with my associates degree. I'm getting my bachelor right now and should graduate in February or March of next year. I'm strongly considering joining the Navy after I get my BSN. I've heard it's crazy competitive and I am wondering what I could do to make myself a better candidate. I currently work on a med/surg oncology floor. I've worked there for almost a year. Before that I was an LPN on a med/surg floor. I can get my oncology certification this august and plan on doing so. I know med/surg billets are few and far between, but I have no interest in the ED or ICU. So how can I make myself a better candidate? Also do I have to wait till I graduate to start the process or can I start a couple months before I graduate? Thanks for any insights anyone can give me.

Specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CEN, CPEN, TCRN.

One thing to be aware of with the Navy is that you get zero credit for your time as a nurse before your BSN. For an experienced ADN-prepared nurse with a new BSN, this is sometimes a dealbreaker because pre-commission experience counts toward time in service and rank, meaning it hits you in the paycheck. The Navy is the only branch that does that, by the way.

Specializes in Adult Critical Care.

My understanding is that you can start the process as long as you are projected to graduate with the BSN by the end of the application cycle.

Your LPN time won't get you constructive rank credit.

If you have significant full time RN experience (4 years or more), I would urge you not to do the Navy. As Pixie said, the Navy won't give you credit towards your next rank for RN experience you attained before your BSN. The Army and the AF will.

Any experience that gives you leadership experience makes you more competitive. I would lead a quality improvement project. Or, become a charge nurse. Or, teach a class for your hospital. Those things would all help.

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