In need of advice


I am a nursing student graduating this May 09. I went on a critical care panel interview yesterday... felt really good about it... seemed to have good rapport with the 3 interviewers... I have a couple of questions and am looking for some advice/input/thoughts:

1)In addition to a slew of 'personality tell us about a time when..." questions, they gave me a list of 4 clinical patient scenarios and asked (other than assessing and taking vitals) what I, as a nurse, would a) do b) expect the MD to order, and c) any diagnoses that came to mind. I think I nailed 3/4... but there was one that I could have done better on. How important are those questions considering I'm a new grad and truly am not 100% sure at this point on the protocol for certain things?

2)I want to send a follow-up email saying thanks, and expressing my interest in the postion, but they did not give out their email addresses and after scouring the hospital website they are nowhere to be found. Any advice on how to contact them and what an appropriate time-frame for follow-up is? This is my first experience applying for a Nursing position and want to make the best possible first (and second) impression.

Thanks in advance for any input! I'm really trying to soak up all the good advice out there at this point.



Jolie, BSN

6,375 Posts

Specializes in Maternal - Child Health. Has 37 years experience.

The "tell us what you would do" questions are intended to test your prioritization, critical thinking and knowledge of disease processes.

No one expects a new grad to be an expert in critical care. They are looking for answers that are "in the ball park" so to speak. They want to make sure that you are on the right track and not running completely in the wrong direction. For example (I'm a NICU nurse, so I'll give a NICU example.) You attend a delivery of a 32 week infant. The baby cries at delivery, but appears to be struggling to breathe and blue. What would you do? The correct answers wold include to keep the baby warm, assess, provide oxygen and tactile stimulation, consider positive pressure ventilation, have emergency supplies and equipment on hand, notify NICU for admission, prepare for admission procedures which might include oxygen, mechanical ventilation, IV and line placement, initial X-rays, septic work-up, administration of IVF and antibiotics, maintainence of blood glucose, etc.

The wrong answers would include bathing the baby, feeding the baby, assisting the parents to take photos, etc.

I would not expect a new grad to get the entire laundry list of admission procedures for a preemie. But I would expect a new grad to know that bathing, feeding and photographing a sick newborn is inappropriate.

Definitely send than-yous by mail or e-mail. Call HR and explain that you need addresses or e-mail addresses in order t follow up with an interview. They should be willing to help you.

Good luck!


453 Posts

Congratulations and good luck on your interview.

I think that a thank you card sent by mail would stick out and be memorable. I would send one to each of the interviewers. I think at one of the conventions I attended the nurse administrator who was teaching a session stated that she gets so many emails that an actual physical thank you card would stick out in her mind.

Good luck,


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