Thursday, November 20, 2008

Considering Other Areas

Now that times have proved to be really tough for new graduates I am beginning to consider other options in nursing. For example, rehab nursing… I have never even considered being a rehab nurse prior to running into this employment slump, but maybe it’s worth a shot. If I don’t like it I can always try other places and other areas, how will you know if you don’t try right?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Hiring Freeze?

Maybe the hospitals in New Jersey are just under a bit of a hiring freeze, it is the end of the year I would assume they have budgets that can’t be exceeded. Once January hits new budgets will be in place and new jobs will open up? If I don’t come up with an acceptable answer that fits in my mind, I’m going to go crazy. No one ever said it would be months before I would be employed. This is terrible, I know I'm not alone in my quest for meaningful employment. Someone please tell me it gets better!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My NCLEX exam

I don’t know exactly where I was when our professors explained the whole process leading up to the taking the NCLEX exam, but apparently I missed a step. I thought that all you need to do was pay the state, wait for your ATT number, then register to take the exam. So here I am – I’ve paid the state, received my fingerprint info, paid for the prints and background check… so now I’m waiting for my number. Well DUH… I forgot that I also had to pay PearsonVue! So here I am complaining that the state is taking forever when it was my error… oops! Alright so finally I got a clue, paid Pearson, and got my test date. 10 weeks and 2 days after I graduated from nursing school I sat for the NCLEX. Totally unprepared because I had been going to beauty industry events and hanging out backstage during shows at NY Fashion Week, in my past life I must have been a beauty editor because I love that type of stuff. I spent 2 days in my town library reading over standard lab values and doing some practice questions. Once my exam date came, I was feeling totally unprepared… Most of my friends had already taken the exam and passed 5 of them only had 75 questions the other two had between 90-120 so imagine my face when my computer hit 76 questions, then 100, then 150! I thought surely this can’t be a good sign and I started stressing about the number of questions instead of focusing on the questions themselves. My NCLEX exam was a total of 167 questions, but I’m happy to say I PASSED!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The HESI exit exam

The program I graduated from required that we take the HESI as an exit exam. If you don’t pass with at least 70% then you do not officially graduate until you do. The first time the school pays for it, each additional time you have to pay for it yourself. Thank goodness I passed on the first time; I think the program I was enrolled in did a great job of preparing us to succeed at passing the HESI. We were required to take MEDSPUB exams some of which counted towards a class grade and others that just had to be completed. 95% of my class passed it the first time; it was a small class of 21 people… so only 1 person failed it. Anyway, the exam itself seemed really long and hard. I was so scared to hit the submit button when I was done, because I feared that I had not passed. The questions were totally random and I felt as though there was no real way you could prepare yourself for it. The only thing I would suggest is doing practice questions and actually reading the rationales. If you are completely tired of questions, just try reading rationales… but doing the questions without reading the rationales is a waste of time.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Elusive Interview

I still have not received any calls to set up an interview. It’s been about 2 whole weeks since I’ve applied and I haven’t heard much of anything from any of the 5+ hospitals I’ve applied to. Here is the thing: I really want to be a Labor & Delivery Nurse, that’s the area I want to be in. I want to continue my education in that area and do lots of things within the realm of pregnancy, childbirth, and infancy. However, I know that most places usually do not hire brand new grads for that area. So I specify that I am a strong interest in that field, but I want to build my nursing skills on a medical surgical floor. I’m still holding tight and hoping I hear something soon. I have sent a few follow-up emails just to show that I am serious about the positions and show that I am a go-getter. *shrugs* maybe it'll work

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Why I'm here

I started this blog as a way to track the ups and downs I’ll experience throughout my career as a nurse. Nursing was not my original career choice; instead I was going to be a public health educator. I thought I would be able to make a difference and teach people to stay and be healthy. It’s a great thought and a good career choice, but it just wasn’t for me. I want to be more hands on and more involved in the actual care, so I signed up for an accelerated nursing program … fast forward 16 months and I’ve graduated – fast forward another 2 months and I’ve passed the NCLEX – fast forward another month and here I am… actively seeking employment and slowly who am I kidding … quickly becoming frustrated, but far from discouraged! I’m going to find a job, hopefully sooner than later.