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New Grad BSN, RN, PHN, EMT and can’t find work. Legality of working as a CNA?

Nurses   (4,473 Views 71 Comments)

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Hi all,

I graduated with my BSN in December 2018, got my RN and PHN in April 2019, and six months out and have only had one interview offer and (I WISH that I were exaggerating) over 80 rejection emails. I also have my BLS, ACLS, and PALS... with NRP on the way. It has become apparent to me that I’m not qualified for the competitive new grad job market in San Diego and possibly California.

I’ve been rejected from SNFs and Home Health agencies because I don’t have at least a year of experience. I’ve applied to prisons, schools, camps, amusement parks, and more. I’ve applied all over the state of california at even smaller non-hospital facilities for both RN 1 positions and new grad positions. I need to make ends meet. Yes, I’m depressed about it but I’m still working hard at it - filling out at least one new app every other day and studying for further certifications in the mean time. I’m filling out each job app and writing new cover letters that are very customized to the facility and city that I’m applying to. 

Bills are stacking up and my student loans have gone into repayment... and not all of them can be deferred or reduced income based repayment. 

So, now I’m on to plan B. It has been over six months out from graduation. Except for one hospital that I haven’t given up on, there are no more new grad cohorts for me to apply to in my city (San Diego) that would start within one year of me graduating. I don’t have the experience to apply to any local facilities for non-new grad RN 1 positions. So, I’m hoping that I wouldn’t be considered as someone looking to just get into internal hiring for new grad considerations. As of today, I’m going to apply everywhere LOCALLY for CNA/LVN/EDTech spots. I’m placing emphasis on local because I would relocate anywhere in the state of CA for an RN position, but I wouldn’t relocate for a CNA/LVN/EDTech position.

Does anybody know of any San Diego facilities will hire an RN in a CNA/LVN/EDTech role? I’m also applying to work in EMT positions on local ambulances. What is the legality of working in those roles as an RN? I just want to know what I’m getting myself into here and what I need to do to protect my RN license. Thanks!

- Broker than broke, BSN, RN, PHN, EMT (useless nominals at this point)

Edited by oceanhugger

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JadedCPN is a BSN, RN and specializes in Pediatrics, Pediatric Float, PICU, NICU.

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I can't speak on the legality of working as a CNA in San Diego. I just wanted to say that if you truly are desperately in need of money to make ends meet, which is of course understandable, then I personally do not think doing only one application every other day is putting in enough work. I've put in double digit applications every day, to every single open position that I came across no matter how undesirable. Also it may be worth looking outside of California as well.

Good luck to you.

 

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8 minutes ago, JadedCPN said:

I can't speak on the legality of working as a CNA in San Diego. I just wanted to say that if you truly are desperately in need of money to make ends meet, which is of course understandable, then I personally do not think doing only one application every other day is putting in enough work. I've put in double digit applications every day, to every single open position that I came across no matter how undesirable. Also it may be worth looking outside of California as well.

Good luck to you.

 

Thank you. I understand that that may not sound like much. Just a month ago it was around two per day. I currently have just under 30 active applications out that I’m still waiting on and checking daily. I scaled it back to one every other day about a week and a half ago because I had already applied to the majority of hospitals for RN1 positions and new grad positions. I’ve also been asked by those supporting me to contribute more in non-monetary ways, which has taken time... and has pushed me to consider non-RN role positions if it expedites ANY kind of employment. I’m in the process of getting my license in NV an AZ as well in the hopes of finding employment in those states. So I assure you that I’m trying multiple avenues. Thanks for the luck though, I know something will come through eventually and haven’t lost faith. I’m just exploring other avenues to make ends meet in the mean time.

Edited by oceanhugger

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3 Followers; 1,309 Posts; 6,593 Profile Views

I will get hate for this, but I worked as an RN after graduating with my NP degree. No they did not have to train me, it was SNF. No, I did not tell them I was an NP. I had RN after my name, still do, and had to put food on the table for the 6 months it took to find a job. We would have lost our 100k house.

Bring on the hate. I did not lie on an application. I would do the same in a minute if necessary.

Yes you can work in these roles, but it sounds like you might need to move.

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4 minutes ago, Oldmahubbard said:

I will get hate for this, but I worked as an RN after graduating with my NP degree. No they did not have to train me, it was SNF. No, I did not tell them I was an NP. I had RN after my name, still do, and had to put food on the table for the 6 months it took to find a job. We would have lost our 100k house.

Bring on the hate. I did not lie on an application. I would do the same in a minute if necessary.

Yes you can work in these roles, but it sounds like you might need to move.

Thank you for your honesty. That can’t have been easy at all. But I appreciate you being able to relate. Is it legal for me to eliminate the BSN, RN and put CNA or LVN on there? I feel like having BSN or RN on my resume would hurt my chances of getting hired as a CNA or LVN. Also, is it financially worth it to move for a CNA/LVN position? I’d move in a heartbeat for an RN position.

Edited by oceanhugger

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myoglobin is a ASN, BSN, MSN and specializes in ICU, trauma, neuro.

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Move to a state (or a different part of California) where you will have an easier time finding employment.  Why is it that my friends are in California right now earning about $70,00 per hour as travel nurses (he has 10 years exp ICU, and she has 2 years Med tele) when they have local talent willing to work for "non travel" prices. I suggest applying to the HCA facilities since most people prefer to work for anyway besides HCA (but in California they have to be much better given the laws).

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One area you could look at is "travel" nursing. You don't necessarily need to travel but you can take contracted assignments in your area. I'm from Florida and I had a friend that would vacation in California for two weeks with her family. The first week she would take a week long nursing contract and then the second week she would spend with the family. Contracted nurses are usually paid more, and I have noticed some companies recently that have advertised no experience required. Even if you take a short contract, you can at least say that you have some experience and keep looking for something more permanent. Good luck!!

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1 minute ago, NurseJackieRealLife said:

One area you could look at is "travel" nursing. You don't necessarily need to travel but you can take contracted assignments in your area. I'm from Florida and I had a friend that would vacation in California for two weeks with her family. The first week she would take a week long nursing contract and then the second week she would spend with the family. Contracted nurses are usually paid more, and I have noticed some companies recently that have advertised no experience required. Even if you take a short contract, you can at least say that you have some experience and keep looking for something more permanent. Good luck!!

All of the travel nurse agencies I looked at required experience. Thanks! I guess I’ll have to keep looking! Would you happen to recall which agencies they were?

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9 minutes ago, oceanhugger said:

Thank you for your honesty. That can’t have been easy at all. But I appreciate you being able to relate. Is it legal for me to eliminate the BSN, RN and put CNA or LVN on there? I feel like having BSN or RN on my resume would hurt my chances of getting hired as a CNA or LVN. Also, is it financially worth it to move for a CNA/LVN position? I’d move in a heartbeat for an RN position.

Many people seem to feel it is illegal to leave off credentials on a resume. I have seen no proof of this.

I had no problem with it, since my  intent was only to work and not to defraud anyone.

If I had never gotten an NP job, who knows? I might still be working there as an RN. That was 15 years ago.

I renewed my RN license last year. It's still good

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You did what you had to do. What I’m worried about is, that without my RN, I don’t have any qualifications to work as a CNA or LVN role. Looks like I’ll have to at least put RN on there and hope for the best in terms of getting hired as a CNA/LVN in the meantime. 

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You can not put LVN or CNA on your applications because you do not hold those credentials.  The state of CA took away the CNA certificates from all RNs and LVNs who held the certificate back in 1994.  Now if you want to apply for a CNA job you have to disclose that you are doing so as an RN and, of course, you are held to the higher standards of the RN license should a problem arise.  You can not just walk out of a room telling yourself, "I am just the CNA here, I have no responsibility."  You have to report to the RN that something requires their attention, etc.

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In my state, you cannot just work in any role, even if it a lower level of education. 

I am only an NP, and an RN. I can't work as an LPN, or a CNA. I never had the training.

I think you should give up the idea that someone will hire you in these roles. They won't.

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