57 and need to start over YET AGAIN! - page 3

I need some help. I just joined the site. I am working as a radiology nurse in small imaging facility. Its been a great job. Unfortunately we are shutting our doors 12/2013. I am worried sick. I live... Read More

  1. by   paradiseboundRN
    I started a job as in Intake Nurse last December. There were 3 other RNs hired at the same time as me. I was the youngest at 51. I am just not seeing any ageism. Although I do know some older nurses that are not very adept with the computer and maybe thats what makes an employer nervous. Make sure that you list any software programs that you used in various jobs. BTW, according to statistics the average age of a nurse in 2010 was 46!
  2. by   wish_me_luck
    Have you thought about doing clinical (or teaching lecture) for nursing programs? Many nursing programs look long and hard for clinical instructors. So, you would be still in a clinical setting; but passing on your knowledge to future nurses.
  3. by   WindyCDE
    Well I don't know if this will help, but I'll throw it out there...

    I am a 20 year veteran of just about every kind of adult nursing you can imagine but at 43 years of age, I recognize that I am only "mid-career" at this point, especially in light of our anemic economy. I also have Fibromyalgia and the thrill of running codes and wrestling head injury patients off of terrified rad techs lost its appeal long ago. A couple years back, I decided to bet on a sure thing for my future in the profession- the diabetes pandemic and Obamacare. I know, I know, you all are saying, "Yeah, but you have to already BE a diabetes educator to BECOME a diabetes educator." I admit it's not easy, but I found a job as a RN Health Coach in an ambulatory care setting and begged to take all the diabetes patients, which only endeared me to the other health coaches since those patients often have complex health issues. It took me two years to convince our nursing director to let me design and facilitate a bonafide diabetes self-management and education program (more money for them), which I wrote (under MD supervision) on my own time while enrolled in Excelsior's BSN program. In fact, I used the diabetes program I wrote as part of my capstone project.

    Once I had accrued my 1,000 hours and required diabetes CEU's, I took the CDE exam (http://www.ncbde.org/certification_info/) and passed. I will be graduating from Excelsior in May, and already have a job offer at a magnet hospital and outpatient clinic program nearby. Next month, I will be taking the ANCC's board certification exam in ambulatory nursing ( Ambulatory Care Nursing - American Nurses Credentialing Center - ANCC ) to give myself an edge over other, younger job applicants AND because the magnet will pay me more for it. My annual income last year was $37,000 gross. Next year? $72,000. Oh, and from the looks of it, I'll be one of the younger RN's employed in that department.

    No more nights, weekends, holidays, concrete floors, Hoyer lifts, masks and gowns, saturated bed linens, cranky on-call docs, blood sugar crashes and UTI's (mine, not the patients'), code blues, code greens, code browns, and no more mandatory overtime! And did I mention I get my own office? With a cute little fridge that they keep stocked with bottled water and fresh fruit!

    For those of you who are dicouraged by the professional practice experience requirements for the CDE, there is now a Diabetes Educator Mentorship Program that can account for up to 400 of the required 1,000 hours of experience. Go here for more information: http://www.ncbde.org/certification_i...rship-program/

    Moreover, I wish you and everyone in the same boat the best in finding a new place that will value your wisdom and experience. Sad to think that, as a profession, we are said to "eat our young". Apparently we do the same to our not-so-young...

  4. by   katherine100
    Are you willing to learn something new? Perhaps dialysis or a nursing home where you will be involved in different areas (i.e MDS, wound care and admin. What about homecare. Many don't like constantly being on the road but it's worth a try. Just a few thoughts.
  5. by   applewhitern
    Someone here mentioned just claiming the last 20 years of your nursing career. Be careful with that, tho, because most places will want to know the date of your initial licensing, and the date you graduated college or nursing school.
  6. by   wanderlust99
    My bf went to a professional to help with his resume. They were able to word things in a way that didn't reveal his age. Just a thought. Others that I had were rep for a company like phillips, picc line insertion nurse, or telephone triage at home. I wish you the best.
  7. by   Jenni811
    Quote from wish_me_luck
    Have you thought about doing clinical (or teaching lecture) for nursing programs? Many nursing programs look long and hard for clinical instructors. So, you would be still in a clinical setting; but passing on your knowledge to future nurses.
    You need a masters degree. It doesn't have to be in nursing from what i hear. I think its a masters degree in something and a bachelors in nursing.
  8. by   ♪♫ in my ♥
    I don't have any real suggestions for the OP or the others facing the bias (which, IMO, has nothing to do with money - they only have to pay you what you'll accept, which is probably a lot less than what you earned before - and everything to do with our culture's obsession with youth).

    I do, however, have a lot of empathy. I've been out of work before and watched coworkers face similar situations. It's part of what drew me to nursing and what drew me to a large, academic hospital, with a strong union.

    To the younger folks: Be mindful of these stories and plan your career to get you into a stable situation while you have the opportunity.

    While I say it mostly in jest, I am mindful that some of my much-younger colleagues are likely to end up as senior management while I'm old but still wanting to work... I'm hopeful that my relationships forged side-by-side in the trenches will help keep me from getting squeezed out while I still have fuel in the tank.
  9. by   harleyridingirl
    I don't know so much that its ageism. I got my ADN at age 53 and just completed my BSN at 55. With both degrees, I got the first job I was interviewed for. Trying to get my first nursing job was the worst. No one wanted a new nurse. They all wanted experience. I did get help with my résumé. I sent out ten of the new ones to companies/hospitals in my area and got two job offers. One HR recruiter said I was exactly the kind of applicant he looks for. Middle aged, kids are grown, and a go getter because I had gone back to school. It is depressing in this age of computer applications where they can't see you or know how you are as a nurse. Reference letters to go along with your résumé help. I always attach those because it is not me saying I am good at what I do, it's someone else willing to say I am a good nurse or person.
  10. by   hav2nurse
    I know it must be frustrating, and living in a smaller community makes it more difficult. Have you sat down and really thought about what you are willing to do for work. For example, would you commute (you may be able to find 4-10 hour day clinic job), are you will to get new certifications (Oncology infusion nurses are always needed and the ONS chemotherapy class is 2 days and cost about $200-3--), are you willing to work on odd shift? I think if you are more flexible with what your willing to do, you may find more opportunities. It sounds like you are not interested in furthering your education, but a MSN can keep you working until you want to retire, and you don't pay loans while your in school (although if they are interest loans then that will still be building up unless you just pay the interest amount).

    I have been a single mom for a long time and my youngest turns 18 when I am 50. I am not vested in any work facility, and barely have any retirement savings; however, I did continue my education and earned my MSN at 47. I may have student loans but I did what I had to do to ensure I could continue working since I have nobody else to rely on but myself. I know some facilities are all about money, but some specialties really want someone who is experience or at least shows enthusiasm for working in their facility. I encourage you to really decide what you are willing to put up with.

    Also, someone did mention travel nursing. I did travel nursing for 3 years, and unless you will be taking jobs that are in your field, you will work hard. It is a good possibility that there are clinic travel jobs. I know I have been getting tons of emails asking me if I want to do travel work. I would just caution you to stay away from a hospital floor position because some of the assignments are difficult and if you have not done hospital work in awhile, it will be challenging.

    I wish you all the best.
  11. by   anotherone
    mqybe you just live in an area that doesnt need many nurses. i did and so did thousands. i applied to hundreds of jobs and didnt hear back from almost any. I finally had to relocate to a very rural area in a part of the country i had no interest in. my facility acually has a lot of out of towners like this. might be ageism or it might just be the job market. millions remain unemployed. if you really need a job , my advice is to apply for everything .
  12. by   jannymac
    I understand exactly how you feel. Several older nurses I used to work with have been 'assisted to retire' and I have been targeted now. I'm currently working toward an online certification in pain management, and will work on others until I find other employment. (Coincidentally, some of the reasons they are trying to make my life miserable are complete lies. Cover yourself well.)
  13. by   jandegarcia
    I just received my RN and I am 47 years old. This is my second career and I have to say that my age did not hold any barriers. As a new nurse I have been hired onto a Cardiovascular Unit at a local hospital. You are as young as you feel! I love my new career. I pray you find a job! Don't limit yourself, just apply, apply, apply! Experienced nurses are in need!