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Vlynn Vlynn (New) New

I am hoping all you experienced nurses out there can help me look at the pro's and cons of starting my first job. Here is the situation.

First, I am 46 so starting out on a new career kind of late. I just finished school and am waiting to take boards. I have worked in the medical field (CNA, med tech, etc.) for many years in the past. For the last 7 years though I have been working for a processing plant, of all things, weighing semi trucks. I know that probably seems funny, but it was a great job, good pay, and when I made the decision to go back to school and get back into nursing, they supported me all the way, with scheduling, and allowing me to study at work.

Now the decision, They are offering me a position as charge nurse over the nursing department (2 LPN's and 2 CNA's), in the plant, and will possibly grow into a position over all the nursing departments for all the plants complexes. This involves a lot of paperwork, following safety regs. etc, as well as first aid, workman's comp situations, new hires. etc, you get the idea. While I think I would really like this, and the hours will definitely beat the hours I would have on a hospital floor, (not to mention to pay is definitely compatible) I am concerned about one thing. If I take this job right out of school like this, without getting some hospital experience first, how do you think it will affect me being able to obtain a hospital position later on, maybe several years down the road, if I decide to make a change? I think I am afraid that if I don't get the hospital experience now, they might not even take a look at me later on. Do you think I would be severely limiting my options in the future if I take this job?

Anyway, any ideas or personal experiences would be appreciated.



Has 22 years experience. Specializes in OB, Telephone Triage, Chart Review/Code.

It seems to me you are really happy where you are. I am wondering about what kind of orientation you would be getting. It sounds like a wonderful opportunity for you, but then again, it sounds like a lot of responsibility for you to start out with w/o actual nursing experience. I think I would be overwhelmed with it.

If you did take the job and were thinking of leaving down the road, you might consider a nurse refresher course before you work in a hospital.

Good luck in any decision you make.

traumaRUs, MSN, APRN, CNS

Has 27 years experience. Specializes in Nephrology, Cardiology, ER, ICU.

What a great opportunity! My questions would be:

1. In a plant environment, there are bound to be the true emergency....obtain your ACLS and trauma cert and this would enable you to consider ER later on.

2. Do continuing ed at a hospital - helps with networking, knowing salary info.

3. Obtain certification as soon as possible in occupational health as national certification is a biggie for most large hospitals.

4. Try a prn position in a hospital also. If you hire in right after graduation, maybe you could use some PTO from your current company to get through orientation.

5. Good luck.

Thank you both! I am thinking that doing some prn would be a great idea. It would help me stay connected with a hospital.

Thanks again

Havin' A Party!, ASN, RN

Has 10 years experience. Specializes in ICU, CM, Geriatrics, Management.

Vick -- Sounds like a great opportunity for you since you enjoy that work!

My caveats would be the same as yours. So I'd be sure to clear it with management that they'd support my credentialing and continued education. These would be key to me.

Don't know if it's realistic to to do PRN work at a hospital though based on how busy you're bound to be. (And you're gonna need some down time for yourself too, less you wanna fall victim to overdoing it -- not too wise to do that.)

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