Rehab Nursing- New Grad


I am a new grad nurse who is interviewing at the Rehab Institute of Chicago. They job offers have been, let's just say non-existent thus far and I am definitely not in a position to turn any positions down.

I was wondering if working in a Rehab hospital would count as experience when applying for other jobs in the future. I have read other postings about people being treated as a new grad even though they have years of rehab experience.

Will this happen even with experience at such a renowned facility as rehab institute of chicago? :confused:

Hey I'm in the same boat-- I live in Michigan in a metropolitatn area that's rather saturated with smart professionals. I graduated in December, got my license in February, and have applied to over 30 jobs with no luck so far. (Well, ok, I got a call from a recruiter for prison nursing, but I decided I could not deal with that.)

Just this morning I got a call from a rehab center for an interview, and I'm totally excited. I think whatever your first job is as a practicing RN, you will learn sooooo much. Interacting with people like we do will develop so many transferable skills.

If you later go into acute care in a hospital, they will probably view you like a newbie, because you're not accustomed to the hospital pace. That's what I hear a lot, at least. As with so much in nursing... I just tell myself to "suck it up" and that some day.... some day... I will be at a good place in my career, with a good work-life balance, good income, feel respected & competent.... yeah. :)

I would have to think very carefully before I accepted OR turned down this offer... my big worry is that I've just applied to a fantabulous new grad ER internship and am waiting to hear from them. I really hope I don't get into the bind of having to respond to the rehab center before hearing anything from the ER internship!!


120 Posts

Specializes in Acute Rehab.

hey jenna1234,

is the Rehab institute of Chicago an acute care rehab facility? If so, the experience should transfer. I work at an acute care rehab facility and there are several nurses i know that worked there for a year to get experience and later received jobs in the acute care hospitals (a few in med-surg, some in tele). So yes, it's attainable after starting in rehab. Some places like to frown upon nurses with just rehab experience, but clearly, not all...


3 Posts

i agree.. i do not want to start my nursing career in a rehab unit in a hospital because I am scared it may be used against me as I do not want to stick with rehab my whole life. Is working in a rehab unit counted as acute experience, because eventually I would like to be a ER nurse.