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New Grad in Corrections

Correctional   (10,894 Views 17 Comments)
by ibrn2010 ibrn2010 (New Member) New Member

ibrn2010 works as a RN.

1,117 Visitors; 11 Posts

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I am interested in hearing the experiences of new grads who have taken jobs in corrections. I myself am a new grad and corrections seems like the only job interested in hiring/training me. I wanted some insight into what it is like to enter this specialty right out of school.

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912 Visitors; 21 Posts

I am a new grad in corrections and love it, but it does pose some problems for the newbie. It is such an autonomous position and no matter how well you did in school new grads don't have the assessment skills and instinct of the seasoned nurse. Some of the calls I have had to make have really frightened me. I work evenings so there are no doctors around and on many occasions the on call dr hasn't answered the phone. We are the first responders in emergencies and nursing school does not prepare you to take on the role of a first responder. The amount of work can be quite daunting, this is how my night went: Sharps and narcotic count, gave insulin to 20 inmates, transcribed 12 orders (and it is usually far more), signed out 15 narcotics, gave meds to 200 people, during that med pass collected 16 sick call slips and assessed those people, in the middle of med pass had to respond to an emergency on the other side of the jail (very messy suicide attempt), finish med pass, clean out the cart, document on the 16 sick call slips, document all of my med no shows and write up consultations for people refusing meds. We have 3 hours to do med pass and I have had well over 30 sick call slips to assess, plus I usually have to detox assessments on med pass. And during all of this you have the jerks who fight with you because you won't give them motrin without an order etc... The plus side: I have seen such a wide variety of illness and emergencies in 5 short months, I have been pushed to develope insticts and strong assesment skills, and I have greatly helped people who never had healthcare on the outside and many of them thank me on a daily basis. And one of my favorite things is the amount of laughter I have at work, people do and say the craziest crap and all you can do is crack up sometimes. If you can get a corrections job go for it!! Sorry for all of the spelling errors and rambling, just got home from work and I'm beat.

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512 Visitors; 2 Posts

I have a concern and I hope you can answear this for me. Will my driving record prevent me from getting a job as a correctional nurse. I have speeding tickets and as embarrassing as this is to admit. Last December I was stopped by a officer for a head light and after my DL was ran, I was informed I was driving with a suspended licence. I was in shock, and I honestly was not aware my license was suspended however in the end it is my fault because I did not make a payment on one of those speeding tickets on time. I went to court payed the ticket in full re-instated my license and the court let me plea guilty of driving without a license rather with a suspended license. Other then my driving history I am good, but I am worried this will prevent me from getting the job at a correctional facility. It just makes me sick to my stomach to even have the driving record that I do now which went from clean to bad within a year.... I hope you can answear my question and thank you for your time.

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912 Visitors; 21 Posts

Just be 100% honest about it and you should be fine. In fact I have a similar situation. My DL was suspended for a year because I didn't pay a speeding ticket, I told them exactly what happened and they were fine with it. I also got into trouble for underage drinking as a teenager and they basically laughed about it, but thanked me for my brutal honesty. They told me from the first interview "be totally honest about everything and we won't have a problem". They find out everything you have been caught doing and if you lie about anything they drop you from consideration at once. I honestly don't think your driving record will hurt your chances as long as you disclose the information. Good luck!!!

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Orca has 24 years experience as a ADN and works as a Corrections RN/DON.

1 Follower; 25,766 Visitors; 1,759 Posts

One agency you don't want to lie to about any kind of legal difficulties is the Department of Corrections - and it is amazing how many people have tried when I have been involved with employment interviews. One was a laboratory technician applicant who stated on her application that she had no arrests or convictions - when in fact she had been arrested five times, had been convicted twice and had served time in a correctional facility (not one of ours).

Your driving record shouldn't be a major stumbling block - especially since you have taken the proper steps to resolve the problem.

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3,687 Visitors; 157 Posts

I agree, your driving record shouldn't be a stumbling block. In my first month working in corrections, I got two speeding tickets.

Get ready for more.

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spongebob6286 has 7 years experience.

8,844 Visitors; 831 Posts

i started as a new grad in the corrections and i survived though. =) thank God!

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koulett has 14 years experience.

1,630 Visitors; 17 Posts

i started as a new grad in the corrections and i survived though. =) thank God!

Are you still in corrections? If so..do you like it? I will be starting my first position in corrections next week and I am a bit nervous.

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spongebob6286 has 7 years experience.

8,844 Visitors; 831 Posts

at first i was scared but eventually with the help of my co workers i liked the job.

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870 Visitors; 15 Posts

I just started corrections and I absolutely love it! I am not a new grad, but I know as of late it is hard for a nurse to get a job especially a new grad. I have five years of experience: acute care (telemetry/IMC X 3 years; psych X 5 mo; and home care x 1 year, telephonic nursing X 5 months). For new grads I think this is an excellent experience. Of course everyone says you need hospital experience and blah blah blah, which I do think it helps, but if you have common sense and you are fresh out of nursing school, you will do fine. Working in corrections you will not find a job that is similar. You set your own pace and you have officers to back you up. If you want to develop skills don't go here...(IV insertion, caths, etc) those are rare experiences. But you commonly see wounds (gun shots, MRSA wound, etc) and its a lot of of ETOH detox if you are in a central booking facility. I think the pay is good, at least for me this job has paid better than my others: in excess of 30$ an hour. I actually feel that this position has been the safest one as well...you are more likely to get injured working with patients in the hospital/clinical settings. Like I have always said, if there is a particular field you want to go in and you are a new grad - go for it by all means. There is always someone willing to train you if you want it bad enough. However, lately, it's hard to get a job. Do not settle. If you can get a hospital job - then awesome - take it no matter what they pay you; it will definitely give you a good foundation!

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koulett has 14 years experience.

1,630 Visitors; 17 Posts

at first i was scared but eventually with the help of my co workers i liked the job.

Thanks! You know how I feel. Greatful for the reply..it is encouraging. My previous shifts got cancelled(i'm with agency) so my actual first day is tomorrow......nervous:uhoh3:

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jaxnsanjose works as a Correctional Nurse.

2,372 Visitors; 29 Posts

I have been in corrections for 10 months, starting as a new grad. It does seem overwhelming at first but I really like it. Just be prepared because it's a new experience every day and nothing in nursing school can prepare you for prison life.

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