Can you work in NICU right out of school?

  1. Hello,

    I will be starting nursing school (again) this coming Fall. I am really interested in working in the NICU and I am wondering how to get my foot into that specialty? Do they offer internships in the NICU for nursing students? I would love to hear some of your stories about how you were able to get your foot in the door to the NICU. My previous nursing instructor had told me that sometimes they prefer nurses who dont have alot of experience because you work differently in the NICU and some nurses have difficulty unlearning (is that a word? lol) some of their habbits and that the NICU is a whole different world. I have no idea if that is true or not-- just something that I was told. My concern is that if I work a different specialty right out of school, like Med-Surg, will that ruin my chances of eventually working in the NICU?

    Since I have this summer off, I am trying to study and read up on that specialty as much as I can-- I know how busy nursing school is and how quickly time flies.

    Does the NICU ever allow nursing students to shadow them for a day?

    Thank you ! =)
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    About Krissyone

    Joined: Oct '03; Posts: 50


  3. by   Love4Me
    Yes U can. I did it. I work in a teaching hospital and got my foot in the door during my last year of nursing school. I started in our NICU as a student nurse. It is definately doable.
  4. by   bubbly
    I am graduating in a couple of weeks and will soon be working in the NICU right out of school! (YAY!) Most nursing schools usually have a clinical day (part of the OB clinicals) for nursing students to follow a NICU nurse for a day. If you are lucky and your nursing school has this opportunity, you may even get the chance to do a few weeks of clinical rotations in the NICU! You will have to check your local hospitals to see if they hire new grads in the NICU (some only hire experienced nurses). If you can, being a nurse extern at a NICU during nursing school will definitely get you hired! (Unfortunately, they are difficult to get).
    You can still get a NICU new grad job without that extra experience, but it is harder. Sometimes it just comes down to the interview (see other posts for that!) Good luck with nursing school and try to keep your GPA at a 3.0 or higher!
  5. by   kcalohagirl
    Several of my classmates did, so good luck to you! I was always seriously frightened of breaking the dear little things. I currently work in an ICU stepdown. Best of luck!
  6. by   ssixsullys this thread I posted on April 12...too funny...we are so different yet so alike love ya
  7. by   suzanne4
    The bigger issue is that there are not enough programs that have good solid orientations for new grads in their area, so the spaces fill up quicker than other areas.

    Best way to get your foot in the door is to get a job there as a student tech, or extern. This way you are familiar with them, and they get to know you. Then you are first in line for any openings.

    Best thing to do for more specialty areas, whether PICU, OR, Emergency, etc.

    Best of luck to al of you.