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Leave Out Sordid History in Interview

Nurse Beth   (288 Views 2 Comments)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho.

14 Followers; 88 Articles; 227,621 Visitors; 1,813 Posts


Dear Nurse Beth,

I began my career in as ADN in ICU and did ICU/Step-down work for approximately 3yrs both full-time and as an agency before leaving the bedside as a traveling clinical educator for new grad RN program as well as a fortune 500 company.

In June 2018, I was offered an opportunity to help build and manage a small private counseling practice. I quit my other positions and took the offer because my long-term goal is to obtain my FNP (I start my program July 1). I knew this position would help close my knowledge gap regarding insurance, billing, credentialing and all the things it takes to run a private practice. As Operations Manager, I managed all things for the practice which had 3 full-time and 2 part-time therapist.

The practice was successful and I am very proud of what I helped build in less than a year. Then the unspeakable happened. The owner of the practice split with her boyfriend and he had no intention of letting her go. Long story extremely short, he is currently in jail for aggravated kidnap/robbery as well as solicitation of capital murder(while in jail); she moved out of state because of the threat on her life and closed the practice since we could no longer ensure the physical safety of the practice. My question is, how do I discuss this matter with potential employers when they ask why I am no longer working and should I address it in a cover letter or on resume? My concern is recruiters won't give my resume a second glance since I am not working. 

Dear Unspeakable,

Yikes, what a wild ride and thank goodness you are safe! 

So you have a good background with 3 years of ICU/SDU experience. You have been away from clinical practice for 1 (?) year, and that's an acceptable amount of time. It's not so long that you can't easily catch up on new practice. You may also qualify as an educator, but those jobs are fewer and farther between, and may not fit with your upcoming school schedule. Most educator jobs require a BSN.

I think recruiters will definitely give your resume a second glance. True, it's always better to land a job when you are working, but you are a desirable commodity with your skill set.

As far as the ill-fated business, you can simply say that you accepted a managerial position for an upstart private practice and the business closed. While you learned many new skills, you are anxious to get back to clinical practice. 

List the position on your resume and in your cover letter you can say that you are an experienced ICU/SDU nurse looking to return to the bedside after a brief hiatus.

In your interview, make no mention of the boyfriend/jail  situation as it serves no benefit and you want to plant only positive associations.

Good luck! 

Best wishes in your decision.

Nurse Beth

Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

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RNSG has 5 years experience as a ADN, BSN and specializes in ICU, Education, Private Counseling Practice Mgmt.

88 Visitors; 5 Posts

Thank you so much for the response and I will take your advice regarding my resume and cover letter. 


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