New Grad struggling to land hospital job!! Advice needed!

by nurseynurse21 nurseynurse21 (New) New Nurse

Has 2 years experience.

Hello nurses! I am a new grad RN who graduated with my BSN in May, and passed my NCLEX early June. It has been rough for me trying to land a hospital job these past few months. The hospital systems in the location I'm trying to work in have all postponed their New Grad Nurse Residency Programs due to Covid, and the other hospitals aren't hiring new grads right now or have very limited positions available to new grads. I am trying to get into Pediatrics (which I already knew would be difficult to do as a new grad) and did my capstone rotation in a PICU. Sadly, the unit I did my capstone in isn't hiring any new grads right now. Basically, it's been really rough trying to find a job on any unit at all, adult or peds.

I would like some advice on an opportunity I've been offered, to gage if this would be a beneficial stepping stone for me! I recently applied for a Pediatric Home Health job with Aveanna Healthcare and after interviewing, I have received an offer. What I'm worried about is if in year from now, I'm applying to pediatric hospital jobs, and because my experience is in Home Health, I'm not going to be a competitive applicant compared to 1 year of experience Med/Surg nurse. Something I'm considering is accepting the job, and continue to apply to the postponed residency programs that just require less than a year of RN experience. Do you all think that in that case, having the homehealth experience would give me a better shot at getting a position in one of those programs. For reference, the program I'm most interested in postponed the start date to February so I would be working in homehealth for about 6 months.

Sorry this was long-winded! I'm just confused and don't know what to do! Should I hold out for a hospital job, or take this job? I don't know what's better in the long run or what is more appealing on an application. Any insight is helpful! Thank you!

I decided to work as an NA in Med Surg. I personally don't think working home health as a new grad RN is in my (or the patient's) best interests.

I figure this gets my foot in the door and I have a better chance at RN jobs once they open up (our area was not saturated before COVID but has just started (2 weeks ago) decomissioning the COVID units and doing electives again.

Edited by harvestmoon

TriciaJ, RN

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 40 years experience.

First, congratulations on graduating and passing NCLEX!

Your concern is something that seems to come up a lot on this forum lately. I'm referring to the belief that the first nursing job you accept might somehow disqualify you from your desired career path. I don't know where this idea comes from. Any hiring manager will expect that anyone fresh out of school needs to land a job and start recouping the cost of the education. Having a gap on your resume from waiting for the "correct" position just doesn't make sense.

However, those who have worked in home health will likely not recommend this for a new grad. You will be required to function autonomously with little support. You can speak to the home health agency about what kind of orientation and support they are offering you, but the likeliest scenario is that they are having retention problems and willing to hire any warm body.

I realize I just gave you conflicting pieces of advice so let me clarify. Try to find whatever job will 1. hire you and 2. ideally provide you with a solid orientation and new grad support. This might be a job that has nothing to do with acute care peds. But it's still nursing experience and will not be held against you in any way. You can work your way to what you want to do; it just might not be as straight a path as you would like.

Good luck!


Specializes in PICU. Has 13 years experience.

I just caution as a new grad in home health. You will need to know different development, trach management, vent management, tube feeds, PICC line, broviac cares, TPN administration, etc.

Clinical experience along is what gets up to pass the NCLEX. Your precepted first job is what gets you experience to practice independently. You will need a solid three-four month orientation, 6 months for ICU.

One week or a visit or two with a partner is not enough.

Please rethink the home health. You will need to have experience enough to have assessment skills identifying what is the patient's baseline, where they need to be, and what is "sick". Also you will need to know how to manage an emergency on your own until the EMS arrives.

Good Luck, it is only July, give yourself another month or two of job searching.


Specializes in New Nurse. Has 2 years experience.

Congratulations on becoming a new nurse! I'm right there with you!

I graduated May 1st and in my state we were given a temporary RN license due to Covid so we could technically practice prior to taking the NCLEX - I had applied to numerous jobs at the hospitals in my area to no avail, so I took an RN position at the LTC facility I was an aide at. I finally heard back from them just yesterday after applying back in May - so my advice to you would be to not give up on getting a hospital job.

Good luck!


Specializes in Pediatric Home Health. Has 5 years experience.


Please think this over long and hard. I am currently a Peds Home Health nurse that started straight from nursing school and it has been a struggle trying to get a job in a hospital. Most places are concerned with how a home health nurse would manage more than one patient. I love what I do, but the work can be stagnant. Keep looking and pushing through for a job in a hospital. It will be worth it!


Has 2 years experience.

Thank you all for your great advice! I ended up not accepting the position, something in my gut was telling me it wasn’t right. I’m still struggling to find a job, but they’re slowly opening new grad jobs so fingers crossed! Thanks again!!