Becoming a Nurse: Job Hunting, Resumes, and Interviews
The nursing shortage brings recruiters to you, as many major hospitals send representatives to nursing schools and local job fairs to recruit students. Some even come bearing gifts. This will give you an opportunity to hear what they have to offer and to ask questions in a comfortable environment.
Use the Internet to learn about job openings and places of employment. This helps you compare positions and develop questions to ask nurse recruiters. Find out what you can about the facility, its employees, and the posted job. However, don't rely on these as your only resource. The cost of advertising for a mass audience may be prohibitive for many hospitals, thus the job of your dreams may not be found in cyberspace. Add these methods to your search:
- Check the bulletin boards at school. If something interests you, discuss it with your advisor. Your advisor will help you find more information about the job and facility.
- Ask around. Ask your instructors, friends, and family members about hospitals and other agencies in your area.
- If your school brings in nursing recruiters, make sure to go and listen to them. You'll learn about the facility and have the opportunity to ask questions.
- Go to career fairs. You'll be able to talk to numerous recruiters, allowing you to compare and contrast their facilities. Career fairs also give you the opportunity to network with other nurses; ask them career questions, too!
- Join the Student Nurses Association and go to conferences. This gives you more networking opportunities and access to career opportunities.
Sample Job Announcement
- FACILITY: STATE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL
- TITLE: PSYCHIATRIC REGISTERED NURSE
- PROGRAM: ADULT PSYCHIATRIC DEPARTMENT
- POSITION RESPONSIBILITIES: Seeking highly motivated nurse for a 20-bed adult chronic psychiatric illness unit. Responsibilities include:
- Psychiatric and physical assessments
- Administration of medications
- Work as part of an interdisciplinary team in developing treatment and aftercare plans for clients
- Conduct psychoeducation groups
- State RN licensure or permit
- Psychiatric experience preferred
- CPR certification
- Full-time evenings with one weekend per month
- 8 and 12 hour shifts available
The Nursing Resume
With the nursing shortage, chances are good that you will get a job. But your goal is to get the job you want. Your resume acts as your calling card, so you want nurse recruiters to know that you are well qualified, even if you have not graduated from nursing school yet. Be sure to include your clinical rotations, certifications, any work experience (nursing-related or not), and any activity that highlights your experience and/or shows you are a hard worker.
Sample Nursing Student Resume
- Obtain position as a registered nurse in an emergency department.
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