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Need some advice


I graduate in May with my BSN. I absolutely loved my rotation at a Children Psych stand alone unit. I plan to do my preceptorship there during my last semester. I would like to work there when I graduate, I feel that's where I would enjoy working the most...the ultimate goal being a Psych NP.

The only thing making me hesitate is people telling me I need Med Surg experience out of school in cases I get tired of Psych. I also have had people tell me that it's not great pay, although this unit and others I have seen pay just as much as the other Med Surg units in my town.

Will I really have trouble getting a job if I for some reason get out of psych? I feel that I will just be starting where everyone else has, just later on. The hospital will teach me most of the skills/orientation.

I feel like that is where I belong, but these things have me hesitant, should I be?

Edited by Brink48

la_chica_suerte85, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pediatric Hematology/Oncology.

As far as I understand it, most of the people who get into psych nursing love it so much that they would never want to do anything else. So, with that said, I specialized right out of school because I don't subscribe to the thought that we need to be terrorized in med/surg before moving on.

Med/surg is it's own specialty, in my opinion, and it requires people who want to do that work. It shouldn't be regarded as a training ground for newbies to ditch as soon as they get the chance. If you want to do peds psych, then do peds psych. If you change your mind later on down the line, there are RN Transition programs that certain hospitals offer (mine does) that function similarly to a residency (but much, MUCH shorter) and teach you the things you "lost" (really, though, you didn't even have them to begin with in nursing school). As far as pay goes, pediatrics on it's own is a money pit so no one gets paid well enough (except endocrine - still not really enough though). But, you seem to have done your research and you're aware of the pay in comparison to other entry-level RN jobs on different units. So, I think you're set. Ignore the naysayers and do what you want to do. Make the best impression you can during preceptorship and the best of luck to you! :cat:

I never prescribed to the "doing Med-Surgery first" nonesense. I went into home health and will be transitioning into Psych again shortly! If you are good with kids with psychiatric illness then I hope you will consider staying in this field. We need good pediatric Psych nurses. Many on this forum will disagree, but I think you will do just fine if you stay in Psych. If you decide to become more traditional down the line, Med-Surg can be learned, and a good nursing manager will recognize the skills you bring to Med Surg, and give proper training. As one of my preceptors said, "Med-Surg is very specialized, but Psych patients are not."