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New grad BSN - Advice on Joining Navy

Government   (524 Views | 5 Replies)
by eng2020 eng2020 (New) New Nurse Student

98 Profile Views; 2 Posts

Hi all,

I'm a senior BSN student graduating this spring, and am trying to sort out my plans for what I'm doing upon graduation. My main intent I've decided I'd like to do is to join the military as a nurse, specifically leaning toward the Navy. I've read over these forums for info quite a bit in the past year while contemplating the idea, so I figured I'd turn here to see if I could get any advice.

I've been trying to look into it for a while now but just haven't been having much luck. Does anyone have any advice on how to specifically go about joining the Navy as an RN?

I initially last summer submitted an indication of interest for the Navy Nurse Corps on their online recruiting page, and they did call me back from that. The operator asked me some basic demographic questions and if I have any medical conditions, medications I'm taking, etc. and said that if everything was good, she would put me through to a recruiter. She didn't though - she just ended the call and that was that. I'm perfectly healthy, young, in-shape, and have no criminal record or anything - I can't think of anything that would be disqualifying.

About a week later, I checked back on the site and found the email address for an officer recruiter in my area, and sent a message to that indicating interest - but never got a response. A buddy of mine in the Army recommended going to the recruiting office in person, so I tried that but the door was locked and no one would answer (it was normal business hours). I tried calling the phone number posted on the door but got the answering machine, so I left a message stating interest and leaving contact info to get back to me, but never heard anything back. 

A couple months later, I checked the Navy recruiting site and saw that the email address it gave for the officer recruiter in my area changed, so I gave that one a try sending a message stating interest. I actually did get a response from this one, and the guy was very on it! He promptly responded saying he could get my info to a medical recruiter in my area and they could help me from there. He gave me an applicant info form to fill out (just more basic demographic stuff), I got that back to him, and he said he forwarded it along and I should hear back within the next week and to let him know if I didn't. A week passed and I didn't hear anything, so I emailed him saying so. He apologized and said he'd track down the recruiter for followup. A few weeks passed without hearing anything, so I emailed him again checking in on it, and didn't get a response. So now I appear to be back to square one and running out of avenues to look into.

I've hit a lot of dead ends and I don't know if this is normal or what. I'm serious about my interest, and would hate to not be able to follow through just because I never managed to actually get through to anyone to try. Any advice or guidance would be greatly appreciated!

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juanofakind1016 specializes in ICU.

6 Posts; 94 Profile Views

I would recommend to keep trying to contact them, be persistent.  Another avenue that you may try finding a university that has an ROTC program and talking to the people there.  If you only have Army and Air Force near by, they may be able to connect you to the people you need to for the Navy.  Just a thought. 

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MasalaC is a BSN, RN and specializes in Psychiatry/Mental Health.

1 Follower; 69 Posts; 471 Profile Views

Sent you a PM!

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jfratian has 7 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in ICU.

1,353 Posts; 12,107 Profile Views

It's too late for ROTC if you're graduating in a few months.  You'll need to apply as a direct accession (direct commission).  That's essentially how they fill the jobs left over once ROTC grads have been placed.  I would challenge you to look at nursing in all 3 branches.  There are advantages and disadvantages of each branch.

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2 Posts; 98 Profile Views

Thank you for the feedback everyone!

I sent another email and the recruiter did finally manage to get me connected to a medical recruiter. Unfortunately, he told me that I'm not able to join as a new grad - I need one year of experience in a given area. They do accept new grads, however only through the Nurse Candidacy Program I guess, which you sign up for as a Sophomore/Junior student. Graduating this semester, its too late for me to do that.
He said he wishes I would've reached out a year earlier and I would've been able to go that route. Which sucks, because I was starting to look into the military a year ago. And granted didn't look into specifically Navy yet, but the Army came and set up a booth at our college of nursing recruiting. I talked to the guy but he mainly shrugged me off and said "Well, you still have a year until you graduate. Come back and talk to us when you're closer." so I put the search on hold, assuming that was the case for the military overall.

It seems a bit wonky since as far as I can tell looking into it, its not like someone in the Nurse Candidacy Program gets any extra medical or military training. It just offers financial assistance with school in exchange for a longer contract to serve. The only difference between me and a person in the NCP is that the Navy hasn't been giving me Scholarships and monthly stipends while in school. I don't see why they wouldn't be able to just assign me somewhere as a blank slate like they do with people in the NCP. But it is what it is I guess. Does anyone know if this may be an oversight on his part, or they truly don't take any new grad nurses outside of the NCP?

In light of that, the decision is now just whether to wait a year (or possibly 2 depending on timing and availability) to join the Navy, or to possibly join Air Force or Army now instead. I definitely intend to look into both Army and Air Force either way to sort out my options for an educated decision.

Any further guidance is appreciated, and I'll post any updates here.

Edited by eng2020

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jfratian has 7 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in ICU.

1,353 Posts; 12,107 Profile Views

The problem is that you don't have enough time to apply for a direct commission.  The entire application process from talking to a recruiter to showing up at officer basic training takes roughly one year regardless of the program or branch of service you join under.  

You should be able to start contacting a recruiter and getting your package ready shortly after starting your first job.  You'll end up having a year of experience by the time you would leave for basic training.

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