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Student externship in ICU requires prior experience?

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by coco1320 coco1320 (Member) Member

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A student nurse externship I plan on applying to lists the requirement that to be considered for the ICU, applicants "must have prior ICU coursework and experience." I really want to be eligible to apply to extern in the ICU, but I'm a little confused as to what prior experience in the ICU they might be looking for aside from maybe working as a CNA/PCT in the ICU. I still have a few semesters before I can participate in the externship, so if there is anything I can do now to help make me a competitive candidate, I would love to be able to do so.

I have reached out to the main point of contact for the externship with these questions but have not heard back, so I wanted to see if anyone on here has any feedback or advice. Thanks so much!

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Rose_Queen is a BSN, MSN, RN and specializes in OR, education.

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Typically nursing externships require one to have completed so much of a program to be eligible (usually the summer between junior and senior years). The one you mention above sounds like it would only be open to those who have completed class and clinical relevant to critical care areas.

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@Rose_Queen Yeah, by the time I'll be eligible I will have taken classes that cover some aspects of critical care, but my program doesn't offer a course that focuses solely on critical care so I'm not sure if that will be enough. Thanks for your input!

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gere7404 has 5 years experience as a BSN, RN, EMT-B and specializes in Cardiac.

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It might mean it's only open to students who did their clinical rotations in the ICU? My hospital's new grad program for critical care/ED hires only accepts graduates who did their practicum in one of those departments. 

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@gere7404 Thank you! I figured it must be something along those lines, but since we do not get to have input in our rotation placements I guess it will just be luck of the draw

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MotoMonkey is a BSN, RN and specializes in ED.

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To start, there is usually an externship coordinator for hospitals that have these programs, I would call them and ask exactly what they mean by "must have prior ICU coursework and experience." Here we can only give our best guess, speculation, and assumption.
 

40 minutes ago, coco1320 said:

since we do not get to have input in our rotation placements I guess it will just be luck of the draw

I also went to a school that was this way. I found it helpful to talk to my advisor (who at my school was a member of our nursing faculty) and discuss what kind of clinical experiences I hoped to have and the kind of areas I hoped to work after graduation. I certainly did not get every clinical placement in critical care, but I did get some That could still be luck of the draw, but I like to think it was because I showed aptitude towards that area of nursing and I showed interest in having those clinical experiences.

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Nurse SMS has 8 years experience as a MSN, RN and specializes in Critical Care; Cardiac; Professional Development.

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Go ahead and apply in the meantime. Just because the wish list states it doesn't mean its a hard stop.

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