As a new grad, I can see the justice of them paying you $11.44/hr, ESPECIALLY if they don't make you sign a 2-year contract!!
I don't care what program you attended, you cannot function at the same level of an experienced RN in an ICU setting as a new grad! PERIOD! END OF STORY! I don't care how many ICU clinical hours you got in your BSN program, those hours weren't completely autonomous as a student. I got TONS of hours as a student, an ICU course, plus I did my capstone in ICU with 300+ hours, and I still felt like an idiot going into ICU as a new grad. During your first several months you'll require an experienced RN at your side making sure you don't kill someone; that's double pay if they're paying you full salary and the other RN.
If you don't like it, don't go into an ICU as a new grad. Personally, I went into an ICU as a new grad and am completely grateful for the residency experience I was able to obtain and have an experienced RN at my side. There is a nursing shortage, but unfortunately, there will probably never be a shortage of people who want to work in highly critical settings (ICU, ER, etc). If you want to fill a gap of the nursing shortage, go to a nursing home where you can use all the skills you learned as a student, but as for ICU, if you really want ICU, then you'll have to make sacrifices to get there.
If you want full salary in the ICU, go to the Cleveland Clinic and work in their Cardiovascular ICU. You'll take 2 fresh open hearts every day. They pay new grads full salary, give you a 4 month orientation with an experienced preceptor, no contract, and you're a CVICU RN in the end with excellent experience from the #1 ranked heart hospital in the nation. That's what I did and now I'm in a top-ranked nurse anesthesia school.
But please, stop your damn whining and negativity. If you want ICU, be positive and go for it, whether at MGH for less money, or somewhere else for more. Somewhere else for more $$ might mean that you don't get as good experiences as you would at MGH. Trust me, a regional hospital's ICU is nothing (acuity-wise) compared to a big name hospital's ICU. If you don't want ICU and you're not willing to make the sacrifices to get there, then don't complain b/c there are others willing to take it; and for less pay and worse working conditions.