So, I am feeling a little stressed right now and confused. I recently graduated at the end of May with my BSN and I am scheduled to take my NCLEX on July 10th. I have applied to literally every nurse residency program in Oregon. I have gotten interviews with five out of the ten places I have applied to and have received emails back from every place that they decided to go with other candidates. I feel like I do really well in the interviews and for a couple of the places the conversation even flows naturally and outside of the interview topic questions, which I am told is usually a good sign. I also follow up with the nurse managers and recruiters thanking them for their time and stating how I look forward to hearing from them. Unfortunately, as I stated, every place I interviewed for are going with other candidates. I thought that maybe I was doing something wrong so I started to ask for feedback from the managers on what I could improve on, or maybe the reasons why they chose to go with another person. They all replied by saying that I was a "strong" candidate but that they went with people who have had their clinicals on their units or have worked for their organization. I have also been looking at non-residency positions but every place wants at least one year of acute care experience. I am feeling a little stuck and discouraged and wondering if anyone has any advice on what direction I should be heading in next? I have been looking at Washington State too but their residency programs are all closed.
Sorry, this is so long. I think the stress of not having a job lined up yet, and also studying for the NCLEX, is starting to take its toll on me. Especially when my friends all have jobs.
Thank you to anyone who responds, I really appreciate it!