Last yr nursing school...I need an externship, what to do??

  1. Hi everyone! I must say that I am addicted to this site! I always see people getting and giving great advice so I figured I'd join in. I am in my last year of nursing and I am starting to think about what area I want to work in when I graduate. So, the problem is...

    I love working with children (Peds) and I love working in OB. I am not sure which one to pursue because I haven't really had a lot of experience with either of them. I was a teachers assistant for 3 years and my first major was Elementary Education so I obviously loovveee kids (whether it be in a pediatric environment or a nursery or NICU or with new moms and their newborns). I have been on a search for externships or any way to get a foot in the door to see if this may be for me but I can't seem to find one. Any tips on obtaining externships or NA jobs in an OB PP/MB/Nursery/NICU etc unit?

    Thanks!!

    Oh yeah...I'm in Philly
  2. Visit LadyK,SN profile page

    About LadyK,SN

    Joined: Dec '05; Posts: 4
    Nursing student day and night

    6 Comments

  3. by   iHeartNICU
    Hey there! I have one semester left in NS and was totally in the same boat as you....started off in elem. education and changed to nursing. I have wanted to work in NICU since high school though....just never thought I'd get there. Well, this semester I decided I need to get in there. I applied for an extenship in the NICU thinking I wouldn't get it. I didn't hear anyhting for weeks even though I was calling & leaving messages with the nurse manager. Finally, one day last week she called me (after about a month and a half). She thanked me for my persistance w/o being annoying and scheduled an interview which I had Friday. I made sure to show my enthusiasm for this unit. She called today and offered me the job. So, it can be done. Just keep at it and don't give up if that's what you want. She told me that she had 60 applicants and had only heard from 4 of us and I have a feeling we were the ones who got the job. So good luck, be persistant, and you will get there. Just keep knocking on doors and telling anyone and everyone who will listen what you want to do. You never know if who you are talking to knows someone and can get you in that way. Sorry I'm not more of a help. Just wanted to say good luck & it can be done!
    Last edit by iHeartNICU on May 8, '07 : Reason: spelling
  4. by   LadyK,SN
    Quote from 1NAmyllion
    Hey there! I have one semester left in NS and was totally in the same boat as you....started off in elem. education and changed to nursing. I have wanted to work in NICU since high school though....just never thought I'd get there. Well, this semester I decided I need to get in there. I applied for an extenship in the NICU thinking I wouldn't get it. I didn't hear anyhting for weeks even though I was calling & leaving messages with the nurse manager. Finally, one day last week she called me (after about a month and a half). She thanked me for my persistance w/o being annoying and scheduled an interview which I had Friday. I made sure to show my enthusiasm for this unit. She called today and offered me the job. So, it can be done. Just keep at it and don't give up if that's what you want. She told me that she had 60 applicants and had only heard from 4 of us and I have a feeling we were the ones who got the job. So good luck, be persistant, and you will get there. Just keep knocking on doors and telling anyone and everyone who will listen what you want to do. You never know if who you are talking to knows someone and can get you in that way. Sorry I'm not more of a help. Just wanted to say good luck & it can be done!

    Thanks so much! You gave me hope I'm def gonna keep searching and hopefully I'll find something. Did you find the externship at the hospitals website or an online job search or ......?
  5. by   imenid37
    Do you want to stay in the Philly? Some smaller hospitals, I hear, in central PA, still have some positions. Get the local advance for nurses and nusrsing spectrums and give some of those who advertise in there a call! best of luck!
  6. by   CEG
    To be honest, I would bet that a lot of the externship positions are already filled- it's almost time for them to start. It doesn't hurt to look though!

    Another option would be finding a job as a tech/aide in one of the units you are interested in. Or even a hospital float pool. You could earn some money as well as get a good inside view of the unit. If you like the unit you are on it's also a good way to get hired onto the unit as an RN. And you could keep the job until you graduate if you wanted. Good luck.
  7. by   iHeartNICU
    I found mine on the hospital web site but then after I applied I kept talking to people and got the name and number of the nurse manager and called her directly.
    amy
  8. by   Calzonan RN
    Hi, I was in your position not too long ago. I wanted to start externing to get more comfortable in the hospital. I applied to probably 15-20 positions at various hospitals and ended up getting two interviews (which were good practice) before I got my dream position. I had wanted to start out in med/surg just to get my general nursing skills and then planned to switch to OB after I graduate (in Dec '07). I ended up getting an extern job in L&D and I absolutely love it!! It's nice to be able to help the nurse out and get a feel for the job, without the responsibility. I think one reason I was hired was my enthusiasm and commitment. I called almost every day to talk to the recruiter, just to check on my application and everything. She let the managers know how interested I was in the position. During my interview I stressed that I feel that a womean deserves the best birth experience possible. I also mentioned the fact that women always remember their nurse during their baby's birth and it's really important to make sure they have a positive experience. I really do believe this, and my managers could tell.
    Just don't give up, check the websites daily because sometimes they'll post a job and get so many applicants that they take the job off the website the same day. Also, let the recruiters know how badly you want to extern and that you're serious. I've had recruiters put my name into a position after it had already been closed out. It took me 4-5 months to get my externship, but it was well worth it and now I should be able to go straight into L&D when I graduate.
    Good luck,
    Keli

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