Taking a job beneath your training

  1. have you recently had to take a job "beneath" your education level, or what you're trained for, because of the economy or being a new grad?

    i'm in this situation right now (i'm a new grad RN in CA), and i'm not sure if i should take the job or not. the pay is low (not a liveable wage), it's a medical assistant position at a clinic, (although with room to grow in a year or so, given my level of eduacation), and they require a year commitment. my goal is to work in a hospital. i want a med/surg position, yet as we know those are few and far between right now.

    is it worth it or should i hold out for what i really want?
    Last edit by stelarRN on Jun 5, '09
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    About stelarRN

    Joined: Jul '07; Posts: 120; Likes: 29
    Advice nurse; from US
    Specialty: 6 year(s) of experience


  3. by   caliotter3
    I would take the job as long as it doesn't keep you from continuing to look for what you want. Better than being unemployed. As a matter of fact, if it were me, I would characterize the job on my resume as an office nurse job rather than working out of your line. After all, what did doctors have to work in their offices before they thought up MAs? Why nurses, of course. Good luck on your job hunt.
  4. by   stelarRN
    they want a year commitment from me, which is why i'm hesitating. so if a good RN opportunity came along, i wouldn't be able to take it.
  5. by   llg
    I would not take the job if you have to sign a year-long committment unless you cannot otherwise obtain food and shelter, etc.. It's not because the job is "beneath you," but because you are a new grad -- and in a year from now, it may be very hard for you to find an RN job.

    You'll be competing against experienced nurses and new grads who will have spent that year either working as nurses or doing nursing skills in school clinicals. There will still be plenty of competition for the good RN jobs and you will not stack up well as an applicant in competition with the other RN's on the job market. While hiring managers will be sympathetic to your plight, they will choose the applicant who has the most current skills.

    On the other hand ... if you can be SURE that you will be allowed to advance in the job and given a chance to use some of your nursing skills, you might want to take it if you really can't find anything better. I took a job "beneath my level of education" when I finished grad school and it worked out very well as I was able to upgrade the position a few years later.
  6. by   SuesquatchRN
    In 2002 I was laid off from a $92k systems job. I went to JoAnne's at $6.65 and hour and cut fabric and stocked shelves.

    No honest work is beneath me. Some is less pleasant.
  7. by   stelarRN
    Quote from SuesquatchRN
    In 2002 I was laid off from a $92k systems job. I went to JoAnne's at $6.65 and hour and cut fabric and stocked shelves.

    No honest work is beneath me. Some is less pleasant.
    i'm not saying this job is beneath ME at all. i would love to work there and it's a job i've already done earlier in my career as an LVN. what i'm asking is should i settle for it now, or still persue a new grad RN position, given this current economy.
  8. by   herring_RN
    An RN who takes a job not requiring an RN license has responsibilities an unlicensed worker, such as a medical assistant, does not have.
    In California each registered nurse is required as a condition of licensure to act as the client's advocate, as circumstances require by initiating action to improve health care or to change decisions or activities which are against the interests or wishes of the client, and by giving the client the opportunity to make informed decisions about health care before it is provided.

    The registered nurse has a legal obligation to recognize situations which are not in the best interest of the patient and to report these situations to persons who could effect change. -- for example, to report a questionable drug order to the physician who wrote the order or to report an incompetent health care provider to supervisor or licensing agency.

    Reporting patient abuse is another example of patient advocacy. In 1985, in response to a request by the California Attorney General, the board adopted the position that failure of an RN to report known or suspected instances of client abuse -- physical, emotional, and sexual -- constitutes unprofessional conduct and is ground for discipline by the BRN.

    Last edit by herring_RN on Jun 7, '09
  9. by   litbitblack
    you will still be responsible to ur license no matter what