Improving chances for an L&D job?


Hi everyone,

I'm halfway through my 2nd year of nursing school (BSN program) and have found that I am very interested in specializing in L&D. I KNOW this is a very tough unit to get hired into as a new grad, but I'd like to know what things I can do now to improve my chances. What specific things could I do in the next two years as a student that would make me more desirable to be hired directly into L&D after graduation? Also, if every L&D job opening requires a year of L&D experience, how does anyone new to L&D get a job?? :down:

Thanks a lot for any info!! :inlove:

klone, MSN, RN

14,584 Posts

Specializes in OB-Gyn/Primary Care/Ambulatory Leadership. Has 17 years experience.

Welcome to Allnurses! Not every L&D job opening requires a year of L&D experience. Departments will often hire new nurses as part of a graduate nurse training program. Do your local hospitals have such a program? Are you able to relocate to a smaller community that's not close to a large city, thus there is likely more of a nursing shortage and hiring managers are more willing to invest in a nurse who is not experienced in the specialty?


50 Posts

Hi there! I'm basically in the same position as you, but with about 7 months to go in my BSN program. I'm an older student (career change) and went back to school to specifically pursue L&D nursing. So before I even applied, I went through a doula training course, and attended several births to get a feel for the hospital environment. I also joined AWHONN as a student (there's a great student discount) to stay up to date on relevant info. I've been volunteering in the NICU for 3 years (our local hospital doesn't have an L&D volunteer program, but the assistant manager of the unit also manages the mother/baby unit) to get to know the nurses, and show continued interest. I also just completed a breastfeeding education counselor course, so I'll have a certificate for that. And next month I'll be taking a bereavement doula training course, to further my information on stillbirth and miscarriage.

I met briefly with the assistant manager I mentioned earlier, to pick his brain about how to get into those units as a new grad. He said it's tricky at his hospital (because they basically have to go with experience/longevity, due to union rules) but that he still recommended doing everything you can to show interest (certifications, classes, etc). So I'll probably be taking an NRP course before I graduate as well.

Good luck to you!


29 Posts

What breastfeeding counselor course did you take? I've been interested in taking one.