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Will volunteer work help you get a job?

Nurses   (8,913 Views 16 Comments)

Black Jade is a BSN, RN and specializes in Ambulatory Care, Case Manager.

7,159 Profile Views; 282 Posts

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I have considered working in Hospice, but they require that you have at least one year of experience working in that area or in an acute setting. I have two years working at a clinic where it seemed more like urgent care (I've done triage, wound care, IV, handled emergency situations, some case management, etc...) but apparently that type of experience doesn't count. I would like to know if volunteering in Hospice will help me gain experience to land a job. My concern is that I will only be doing nursing assistant tasks and won't be able to put my RN skills to the test. I've also considered volunteering as a Disaster Response Volunteer in order to keep up with my skills. A

Thanks for your input!

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5 Posts; 1,731 Profile Views

I volunteered for the hospital that I am currently working in. I didn't gain any clinical experience, but I was able to show the facility that I wanted to participate in delivering care in any capacity. Volunteering showed that I was more committed to the hospital than I was picking up extra hours (money!) at the job I was working at the time.

I got insider knowledge of job openings weeks before they were posted online and gained amazing references. As a result, I was hired at the facility.

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SlightlyMental_RN specializes in chemical dependency detox/psych.

471 Posts; 6,174 Profile Views

It helped me land my current job. Both HR and my now-manager mentioned that it impressed them.

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3,408 Posts; 29,121 Profile Views

Volunteering definitely helped my application. I don't think it counted as experience but I do believe that it showed managers that I was staying active and seeking out new experiences to learn from.

It also gave me something to do to keep myself from being completely burnt out by the job search.

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69 Posts; 3,644 Profile Views

Yes, yes, and YES! :-)

If nothing is happening on the employment front, volunteering (even one to two days a month) is a great way to network, gain experience, get your foot in the door, and prove your worth.

I got my last interview by becoming a part-time volunteer parish nurse at my church. A retired nurse there knew someone who knew someone who was looking for someone like me. And because I had performed well volunteering, she was willing to be a great reliable reference! I should know something for certain this week!

Even if you aren't showing off 100% of your skill, you ARE showing interest, reliability, and dedication to the profession.

I would do it!

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PRETTYODD has 2 years experience and specializes in med surg,stroke.

28 Posts; 1,233 Profile Views

Like all replies, I agree too that volunteering helps in getting a job because it also helps employers know about your compassion for serving people. A letter of recommendation from your supervisor at volunteer office goes a long way. All the best :)

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nurse2033 is a MSN, RN and specializes in ER, ICU.

3 Articles; 2,122 Posts; 28,261 Profile Views

Volunteering is always a plus on your resume. It shows your interest in the work and that you are not all about money. I say do it.

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PediLove2147 has 7 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Pediatric Cardiology.

648 Posts; 13,405 Profile Views

I hope so because I am doing something very similar! I REALLY want to work at a hospital in my area so I signed on as a volunteer. I am hoping it leads somewhere.. even if it doesn't though I am enjoying it :)

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246 Posts; 7,043 Profile Views

Got me into my current position. Of course it also helped I was going to school to become a CNA too. Also the NM on the floor saw that I was an incredibly hard worker as well.

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78 Posts; 3,060 Profile Views

Yes, it is very likely! Just make sure that when you are volunteering to be clear of what your duties and the facilities expectations are; are you working as a volunteer, or a volunteer nurse? Check the states regulations regarding volunteering as a nurse.

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Meriwhen is a ASN, BSN, RN and specializes in Psych ICU, addictions.

4 Articles; 7,879 Posts; 59,246 Profile Views

It can't hurt, and it can definitely help. The fact that I was volunteering impressed many of my interviewers during the job hunt--one told me that she liked that I was out doing something to develop my skills instead of doing nothing.

Volunteering is also a good way to get your face known and make contacts.

It's definitely a nice addition to the resume. However, you need to accept two things...first, you may not necessarily be able to volunteer during actual nursing skills due to liability reasons. You may have better luck being able to use your nursing skills volunteering at free clinics and smaller facilities than at large hospitals.

Second, remember that by volunteering, that's exactly what you should be doing when you are there: cheerfully helping out however needed even if it's not actual nursing that you are doing. Don't spend your entire time grousing about doing office work or trying to network and schmooze NMs for a job. People will notice and remember how you behave as a volunteer and consider that when they look at you for job opportunities.

Good luck!

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261 Posts; 7,212 Profile Views

So if you're a volunteer RN (and let's say that you do assume a good chunk of responsibility for the patients), can you use this experience to fulfill the "1 year required experience" that hospitals want? I read a previous post that stated that the experience had to be paid, but isn't any experience, well 'experience'?

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