Published Jan 14, 2004
I've been browsing this forum for about a year now and know what great advice you all give.
I am a senior nursing student and will receive my BSN in June. I know I want to work in L&D. I LOVED my maternity rotation in Spring, and couldn't get enough of it. I spent my summer as a full time extern on a postpartum unit where I was with a preceptor 40 hours a week. By the end of the summer, I was independent with my preceptors entire assignment which consisted of 4 or 5 dyads, the nursery, or newborn triage. This was at a large university teaching hospital with many deliveries so I feel I had a lot of exposure.
For my high acuity rotation this past fall I was placed in L&D, as I had requested, so I was with another preceptor, and spent 10 weeks there. Altogether I have been doing some sort of OB clinical since last April.
In about two and half weeks I have an interview with a nurse recruiter and the L&D nurse manager (!) at another large hospital. From what I understand, they are open to hiring new grads, although they do hire into High Acuity OB first sometimes.
My question is: What can I do to be as marketable as possible? How do I approach the interview? I am one of those people who hate talking myself up but I know I need to be fairly aggressive. I feel I have a good knowledge base in OB and am very open to learning. I've gotten great reviews from all my preceptors and clinical instructors. I just really WANT to get hired into L&D. Any advice or tips you can give me would be much appreciated.
I did a similar thing when I was in BSN school. I worked Postpartum/Newborn/Antepartum at a University Teaching hospital. My title was Nurse Associate and I worked under an RN preceptor and then eventually took my own assignments and had to have an RN cosign my assessments and give my meds. That in itself is going to help you immensely. I strongly recommend getting registered to take an the next NRP and EFM course offered near you if you haven't already. (The hospital should reimburse you later). That will show your motivation to get the certifications you need for this specialty. It sounds as if you should have some great letters of recommendation from you preceptors. Good luck to you-I'm sure you'll do fabulously at your interview.
Your tremendous experience as a nurse extern is a great asset!
Don't be afraid to "toot your own horn" so to speak. At the conclusion of my senior nursing clinical, I had to fill out a self-evaluation form (identical to the instructor's form) prior to meeting with the instructor for my final eval. As we went down the list of items, she kept her form covered, asking me to show how I scored myself, and give supporting information to back up my score. After several items, it became apparent that I was consistently scoring myself lower than she scored me. She finally made her point that I was being overly-modest, and that while it would not cost me a good grade in her class, it may cost me opportunities in real life. Do not over-inflate your experiences, but don't be overly-modest, either. Make up a list of your strengths, based on your clinical experiences, with some examples from your patient care. Make up a list of your weaknesses, along with how you think they can be overcome.
As a nurse manager, I would have killed for a new hire with your experience! Good luck!
Thank you both for your replies, your feedback was great. I'm going to try to find an EFM class to sign up for, and give it my all at the interview.
Wish me luck!
purplemania, BSN, RN
The first paragraph of your post listed some of the accomplishments you had in clinical rotation. List them on the resume along with anything else that shows you had experience (name the equipment you used, if possible). I do not recommend getting any certifications till hired. You need to concentrate on finishing school and passing NCLEX. Also, the hospital may not reimburse unless you go thru channels as employee. And too, your manager may have preferences. If I were hiring a GN to maternal-child area and read your post, I would certainly consider you.
Get letters of recommendation from people you worked with on the unit. Or ask them if you can include them as ref's for your graduate position.
Create well-written care plans that meets your patient's health goals.
This study guide will help you focus your time on what's most important.
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