LaurieEllen1973 2,156 Views
Joined: Feb 1, '10;
Posts: 33 (12% Liked)
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Track...the unmentioned pre-req for nursing school.
Aw. I Pray God opens this door for you. All you need to do at this point is have faith and claim your new job!!! Congrats in advance
I'm on a roll with these threads lately
I started a job in a wound healing/hyperbaric clinic back in November as a Wound/Hyperbaric Nurse because I thought I needed a break from 20 years of LTC. I am a Christian and knew more than 20 years ago that my calling was to work in geriatrics so I did, and found great reward in it.
Fast forward to the Fall of 2012. I began feeling like I wanted to make a change, so I pursued a totally different direction and landed my current job. Now I know that a lot of LPNs and RNs would give anything to work in a clinic, Mon-Fri. with all holidays and weekends off, but when your heart is not in it, it's miserable. I go to work everyday and do my job, but I am only going through the motions, never enjoying one minute of it.
There is enough work for two people and I never hear anything positive about my job performance, even though I have been thrown to the wolves. No wonder they have been through three Hyperbaric Nurse Techs in less than three years.
I had an interview after work this afternoon as a nurse supervisor in a home for Alzheimer's patients, and when a couple of those little residents came up to me and enthusiastically hugged me like a long lost family member I just about lost it. My heart said "this is where you belong" and I know it. I have gone off on my own, thinking there was something better out there, but the truth is, my heart is with the elderly and I cannot run away from it any longer.
If God blesses me with this job I will not run away from my calling again. I will strive to provide the best care I can, and will enjoy every moment I am given to work with some of the most precious members of our society. My heart belongs in geriatrics and just wants to find it's way back.
I left the hospital and took a job at a private practice to get off night shift. It was awful for me and my family. I never adjusted, felt sick and irritable all the time and felt as though I had no life outside sleep and work. Thankfully I was able to find a job with a specialist so it was actually a pay increase when I left.
I agree completely with Jbudd's post. It worked out fine for me. It depends on so much. I worked very close to home. Got home, saw my husband off, got the kids to school (once in a while a little late!). Slept while they were in school. Was awake when they got home. I made it to every school function, field trip, etc. I worked 32 hours a week, not 40, I think that makes a huge difference. I did this for 17 years.
I know we are all different about sleep, how much we need, how we react to less sleep, etc. I was fine. Honestly I think at least 50% of how I felt was mental, not physical. I am not a very somatic person (maybe I was tired, I just refused to think about it). I adapted to days off, vacation schedules, etc., fine.
But again, that is just me. I honestly believe nurses who say the tried working nights and felt physically ill all the time! (In spite of my earlier comment about 50%).
Honestly now that I am older working part time day shift I sleep poorly, and often feel lousy at work and on my days off, maybe I should go back to nights, ha ha (or maybe I should become 20 years younger).
My very first nursing position was in cardiac rehab working three 12 hour 7pm-7am per week. I didn't know how I would make it through the first night. Believe me it is really not a problem once you get used to it; there will be plenty for you to do to keep you going. After your body adjusts you will probably have no problem sleeping at night on your days off. I know I didn't! When I return to the workforce I will be looking for a midnight position myself. (It seems to be the easiest on the family.) GOOD LUCK!
I'm orienting on nights in a CVICU (ignore my screen name, I want to change it). Pt ratio - 2:1 or 1:1 for high acuity. I never worked one night shift in my life either and I'm 31. Off and on, I have to come in during the day for new grad classes or whatnot and that screws me up. Generally, though, my rhythms are set for night...I just didn't know it. I am wide awake, extremely mentally alert and able to absorb info and I drink FAR less caffeine than I usually do during the day. So... like others have said, it depends on the person. My personality has actually improved.
I personally think it is easier to learn on nights for the reasons described by the other posters, and would recommend it.
What seems to work for me:
If I have a day or two off before the shift, I take a 3 hour nap in the afternoon before I start...freshens me up. Then, when I get home, I eat, play with the kids/dog/husband or run an errand or two (depending on the day of week) and then go to bed. 5 hours if I don't work that night so I can go back to sleep w/hubby later. OR 6-7 hours if I do. I never work more than 2 shifts in a row without a day or two off.
If a specialty unit is what you want, then I think nights is worth it.
WalkMyGardenPath very well written. you captured the heart of all GOOD night nurses. i would be proud to work night shift with you anytime. lots of times i work with the nurses that read the newspapers.
Alright new grads, I am a straight shooter and a bit of a cynic (I like to call myself a realist, personally) - but that is possibly why I scored myself an RN job with a residency, before I graduated, on the floor that I wanted and chose. This is geared for people that know how to get down and dirty, will be great new graduates, and know that a little hard work can go a long way, and aren't scared to put some effort into the job search. Not for those of you that are halfway through nursing school and still "hate" giving bed baths (buck up!)...
Come to terms with reality and what you have to work with.
My boyfriend of three years lives in SF, and I went to school here in the Midwest because it was much more economical; I simply couldn't afford to live the CA lifestyle while in school. Therefore, I of course set my sights only on getting to the Bay Area while in nursing school. And then...my sights started getting set on anything in California...and towards the end of school (and after a few close nabs at a CA residency spot, dangit!), I realized if I wanted employment right out of school, it would mean having to stay here in the Midwest to get some experience. And I have to, because I don't have a roof over my head if I don't have an income, I was living off loans through school. No rich mommy and daddy to hand me things here. Note though, that I am in a pretty big urban city that is still quite competitive - so this article is definitely applicable, I wasn't handed a job in some Kansas farmtown. Anyways, this is sort of a new grad analogy to the first step in AA...come to terms with what you have and things will start to be more realistic! It is 100x easier to get a job where you are going to school.
Be flexible, but have some goal ideas as well.
Just like a diet or exercise plan, it's a lot easier to gets things accomplished when you have specific goals. I started to realize during clinicals that I was flexible, but really didn't have interest in OB or Peds (which is great, since these are so popular...not sure why, hehe). I really liked working with older populations, I liked more acute and sick populations, and I liked roles where there was a lot of teaching involved (I like to get up on my soapbox and preach about diet, nutrition, and mind-body health...yay, Medicine floors!). From here, I picked a few specific floors and went from there.
Stalking time! No, not really.
If you're going to only read one part of the article, read this. But this is where new grads dip out and no one steps up to the plate. Like, out of 50 classmates, I was the only one that did this. I have no idea why because managers for the most part were very receptive of it. So how to do this? If you are lucky enough to do any kind of clinical work, even for a day on the floor, introduce yourself to the nurse manager. Ask your nurse if the manager is there, and have them introduce you, or if you are courageous like me - walk right in the office! Put on a big smile, extend your hand, and start telling them how great your experience is on this floor and that you would really like to work here in the future. There are definitely weirdos and crappy management out there, but for the most part, nurse managers are going to love this. It's a win - win really. If you have the personality and showed them, you're putting yourself ahead, AND you're making a future hire easier on them. They don't have to sort through 50 applications of new grads when they know that you are genuinely interested and you have the great personality, open attitude, and readiness-to-learn that you have showed them, face to face.
Don't have a clinical? Start using Google. If you don't know how to, you're SOL on this one, no internet tutorials here folks. But, yes, Google! Start with the specific floor and then also enter "nurse manager". This doesn't work ALL the time, but usually you can find some linked website, LinkedIn profile, or something else that will show the nurse manager's name, and if you're lucky, their e-mail address. My advice is to e-mail them a few months before you can formally apply for the position. Tell them you are specifically interested in their floor, and just use this as your shot to voice out. Don't make it too long (like this article) - they don't want your life story. Be charming and honest! Convince them why you'd be a great investment.
How I got my job, in a paragraph: introduced myself first day of clinical to manager of a floor I knew I was interested in. Confirmed interest over 7 week clinical. Re-introduced myself to manager last day of my clinical and asked for a business card and said very directly "I love this floor. I would really to like to work here when I graduate. Can I shoot you an e-mail when I apply, so I'm not just in the giant HR pile?" Nurse manager thought I was funny and said "please do". E-mailed her midway during school to tell her that I was getting great experience on other units but I still just loved hers, how it ran, complemented her staff, etc. It was true, and she appreciated. It was my way of holding onto her as a contact. E-mailed her again when I applied months later, referring her back to our e-mail chain so she was reminded who I was. HR called me out of over 500 new grad applications and I got an interview the next week. Then scored the job. It was a bit too easy. But why? Cause I stepped my game up. Oh, and sent a hand-written thank you card after your interview! Duh.
Hiring managers are not looking for new grads with 4.0 GPAs and who were the president of their school and NSNA.
If they are, they're missing out on a lot of great hires. They are looking for someone that is a positive person (SMILE BIG), a professional, and most importantly: can easily integrate into their team, is honest about their strengths and weaknesses as a new nurses, is accountable for their actions, and genuinely has a strong desire to learn much more everyday than they were taught in nursing school, to build their nursing foundation, and genuinely is compassionate and wants to truly ease the suffering of their patients, and help better their lives and health. I myself got into nursing after dropping out of undergrad to help a very sick parent and the rest of my family deal with the illness. I got into nursing because of this; I have an innate desire to really serve sick people and their families, and it naturally shows.
Write a cover letter.
Put effort and thought into it and don't make it too generic. Don't believe people that tell you not to waste your time writing a cover letter. You need to write a cover letter. Have a great resume. Make it different, somehow. And not with hot pink paper or Comic Sans font. Always be ready to be a professional and meet someone. Always. Look for networking everywhere you go. Use your nursing school contacts to help you get a job. Tell people you know that the nursing economy is rough for new grads and you are trying to step up to the plate early. While you may have to wait until you're licensed to formally apply, you do NOT have to wait to make connections. If you are quiet, don't like doing all the above stated advice, it's time to balls up.
Lastly, realize that getting a degree as a nurse does not guarantee you a job (not matter what Yahoo! News tells people). Not even close, in this economy. I graduated in May and more than half of my classmates didn't get jobs. Guess what? Those were the people that sent in their applications online...and that's all they did. They sent out a generic electronic form and resume into some electronic world. They didn't get in touch with the people who really make things happen. If you think you are going to get a job because you have a BSN; have a previous Bachelor's in Biology, Psychology, whatever; graduated with honors, etc. - THINK again.
Know that I tried VERY hard and spent literally weeks worth of hours to try and get a job in California, and all over the rest of the country. I am estimating I put in at least 500 hours of work during nursing school that was dedicated to my job search and researching the market. Be willing to work very hard, and something will happen for you.
OMG that's perfect! I couldn't figure out how to ask directly! Thank you!
Good grief. Sounds WAY too desperate and anything that long screams "THIS PERSON IS A TIME BANDIT!" Try this:
Hello Mr. xxxxxx,
I just wanted to drop a line to say "thank you" for the interview, and any consideration of my qualifications for the position. I look forward to further communication. Have a great week!
- Your name & credentials
Sorry, I guess I just know too many new grads who whine about not being able to get a job out of school. That is where I was coming from. Sorry for getting off of topic.
I am a BIG proponent of volunteering! BUT...in the right setting and circumstance and if it lands you a job...you can't beat that.
Quite frankly, I despise the numbing creams. Not only do they cause blanching at the site which makes it even more difficult to start an IV but sure as shootin' the attempt at the numbed site won't work and then you have to stick an un-numbed (is that a word?) site after PROMISING the kid/parent that you would numb their skin. I have started thousands of IV's in kids and I'm no slouch at it but those creams are the bain of my existence. Routine IV's on kids with great veins I'm fine with EMLA but the sick ones who need an IV sooner than an hour or two later or those with access issues I think it makes the problem worse. I have found that simply talking to the patients if they are no longer infants and explaining to them what you are doing and what they will feel and you give them permission to react generally works great. I can usually get 3 year olds to hold still with my "friend" who's gently "helping them remember to hold still". They also provide distraction to the child because they rarely have to exert much more than light pressure to hold the extremity still. They are the "good guy". I have never needed more than one person to assist. I'd be freaked out too if 5 strangers all of a sudden were lying on top of me. I've used parents as imobilizers by having them cuddle their child chest to chest on their lap leaving the extremities free. Sometimes I have to lie on the floor to get to the site but if it works I say go for it. Of course the child is aware that they are going to get an "owie". I don't believe in sneak attacks. I also use a papoose board. String me up if you'd like. I call it my "special bed" to "help you remember to hold still". This is why I only need one assistant. I find the PB freaks the parents out way more than the children, in fact most of the kids relax on the board because they are able to get their minds under control when their bodies are under control. I put them on the board (never the parent) but I have the parent take them off the board so they can be the "hero". Most of my IV's are started with minimal fuss and bother. A few tears but very little screaming in pain or fright. It's all in the approach. And afterwards always some sort of prize from me ( I give really good prizes) and usually a hug so they know that I'm a "good guy" too.
Sadly a lot of places are interviewing, but still not filling positions. If you have a stong education with a string of degrees behind your name, recruiters want more experience. If you are experienced, they want more education. If you have both you are over-qualified. If you have neither you are disposable. Truth is - it's an employer's market. They have plenty of applicants to pick and choose from, yet somehow still find a reason to not fill vacancies.
I'm in your shoes right now and it really sucks. We've spent many years, countless hours, and given our all to this profession that continually is rejecting us. HR doesn't have the time to review our applications. No new grads.
To be honest, I went an entire month just applying, applying, applying to every single hospital in my metro area and didn't hear anything for a month. However, I just got off of a phone interview with a nurse manager. He asked about my experience, and I told him that I volunteer and worked retail during my RN school... which I really tried to blow off. But he didn't. They said that it was great customer service experience and general work experience, so don't discount it.
To the hospitals that I have poured many hours into, made many connections, only to be dismissed by HR? I'm sorry, I wanted to work there, but I will no longer apply. I am no longer interested in working for someone who doesn't want me there. It is what it is.
BTW.... All of the interviews I have gotten have said "Experience Preferred" on the application. Apply to all of them, the No experience and experience preferred. You never know!
Good luck to you - I hope that you get an offer very quickly.
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