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Not Applying to Nursing Residency

Meabso Meabso (New) New

Has <1 years experience.

Should I apply to Residencies and Regular RN positions?

  1. 1. Should I apply to Residencies and Regular RN positions?

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      No, please don't

4 members have participated

Hi All,

I had a burning question that my peers can't answer so I'm bringing it here.

So what if...

I didn't apply to a New Grad Nurse Residency or Internship, but to a position that was open to new nurses.

Will I regret it?

Is there a big difference?

I'm asking because my school has a job database where new grad jobs are posted; New Residency opportunities and just RN positions.

We've been told to, or conditioned to apply for the residencies and internships, but those regular RN jobs are still there in the database.

So I'm wondering would I be crazy for applying for those as well.

Thanks much,


Popular residency programs put more money and effort to train new employees and to slowly transition you into the nursing role while just an RN position would probably throw you on the floor with less training. It's completely up to you imo... If you think you're competent enough and can learn quickly, I don't see any problem in applying for a regular RN position. I've heard stories of new grads being put on the floor with full workload and expectations just after 2 weeks of training and they turned out very stressed but strong RNs. Likewise, I hear new grads in residency programs with 6 months-1 year training that turn out to be very well knowledgeable and good nurses as well. Why not just apply to both and see where it takes you?


Has <1 years experience.

Thanks for the advice! =)

In my hospital, it is much harder to get a regular posting as a new grad, particularly if it is a coveted specialty like NICU. Most regular postings on most floors require two years experience in that specialty. New grad positions are a foot in the door to the specialty of your choice. Of course, it never hurts to apply so you have more chances!

Reyn04, MSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 7 years experience.

I was hired to a unit but all new grads had a separate new grad training period for 3 months where we spent time in different hospital departments & lunch meetings with nurse educators.

Next place I worked, the new grads had a floor job but spent a full year going to residency education programs & even doing papers for it!

Current place I work the new grads worked x number of weeks in different units and then applied at the end of that "residency". Different places do things differently.

I'd suggest applying for a residency as you may get a better transition from student to nurse & more education as to how things actually happen. But is it the be-all/ end-all if you DON'T? I'd say no, not if they are fully aware and agreeable to taking on and training a new grad.

But my full advice isbto apply for everything & see what comes up.

What unit do you want to work on? ICU has a much steeper learning curve, so I definitely want to do a residency. But if I was going into med-surg I think I would be ok just from having worked as a CNA paying attention and asking questions. I think anywhere you go will give you a decent orientation and you could probably just try hard and make it work. I think there's a lot of people who need a residency, and some who probably don't. That probably depends more on the individual though.

verene, MSN

Specializes in mental health / psychiatic nursing.

Know your local hospital systems well. In my area, many hospitals will only hire new grads into residency positions. A new grad can apply to a non-residency position, but they won't make it through the screening. Outside of the hospital though, not all clinics or organizations offer residencies, so in those settings apply for the job directly.

Residencies provide a structured learning environment and more support than a non-residency position. Many new RNs need that structure and support to get up to speed and feel confident on the floor. Not all settings require or provide that kind of learning however, myself and other cohort-mates who've gained new grad employment in more community based settings have all had to hit the ground running with a much more limited orientation process.