NICU for senior practicum

  1. Hi everyone!I've been working as a HCA since before starting nursing, and always knew I loved acute care settings. I had my heart set on emerg for senior. I did a job shadow in NICU an ER at a nearby hospital to get an idea of some options I could see myself doing. I have worked in children's pacu and or, but had no idea how awesome NICU is. I had previously debated applying for a adult icu program as well, but now I think I'm hooked! I fell in love with the teamwork, that holistic care of caring not just for the baby but the parents and family ws well and respect for the nurses by everyone in the department and the constant learning. I must've filled a notebook full of things to research when i had gotten home. I am not sure how many students will be applying for this program, but I know that if I chose it as my first option and don't get it, I will be very discouraged. I have a high GPA and have received A's for all my clinicals, as well as a reward this year for clinical exellence ( only given to two students ). What does NICU and schools look for of someone applying there? I'm also concerned that if I put my last option for emerg to fall back on, it will be harder for me later to go from Adult to peds/neonate care. Any thoughts or advice would be greatly appreciated! I am stressing myself out about making this decision for my future.
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    About doublehelix

    Joined: Aug '10; Posts: 167; Likes: 53
    HCA - Float Pool; from CA


  3. by   doublehelix
    I'm also wondering, for those that did your senior in peds/neonatal areas, did you find it more difficult to write the RN exam, which I assume is mainly on adults? Thanks again.
  4. by   coughdrop.2.go
    I did my preceptorship in NICU and I passed the first time with about 85 questions. No it wasn't harder because you study all the subjects. I loved my preceptorsip and I can't wait until that day I'm a NICU nurse but unfortantly the job market is tough for new nurses and I'm willing to take any job. I WILL find my way to NICU. I already have my NRP certification and I plan on joining NANN. Even if you aren't a NICU nurse you can still take part in conferences and get involved with your local chapter which is what I plan on doing. Try to stay active in the NICU community by reading journals and taking a few free NICU CE courses. I say keep your options open because it's hard out there (I graduated May 2012 and only one interview) but go for NICU if you have the opportunity!
  5. by   doublehelix
    We have a fairly good job outlook here, currently there are around 800 nursing vacancies in my city, with 5 open positions in NICU currently. Thank you for sharing your story
  6. by   NICU Kristen

    I'm in the same boat as you. I did an externship and my senior practicum in the NICU but it's a tough area to get into! We will get there eventually!
  7. by   queenzeus
    Doublehelix where you from new rn looking for jobs. Thank u and happy holidays
  8. by   doublehelix
    Hi, I'm from Manitoba, Canada.
  9. by   queenzeus
    Thanks appreciate from the New York City it very competitive here just looking for a change to work. Thank u very much for your quick reply
  10. by   doublehelix
    Not a problem. Most of Canada is experiencing a nursin shortage, over the past few years they have been bringing nurses in from the Philippines. We are very fortunate there should be many positions upon graduation.
  11. by   champagnesupeRNova
    I also struggled with the decision to do my senior practicum in adult care or NICU (even though I knew I wanted to work in a NICU after graduation). I just felt like if I did NICU, it would really limit my chances of getting a job. It turns out that my NICU practicum was the reason I got an interview in a Level III NICU, and I was hired before I had even taken my NCLEX! It was the best decision I could have made.

    Also, being in the NICU didn't hurt my NCLEX outcome. I studied for 3 weeks with practice questions and Saunders and passed on the first try. Most NICUs prefer hiring new grads, so do everything you can to get in there quickly. Research, network, and contact people directly. Good luck