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Dear Donna NEWS
Am I out of touch in sending handwritten thank you notes to individuals who interview me for a job?
Question: Dear Donna, You recently advised someone in your online column to send a typed thank you letter after an interview. I had always been told to send a handwritten note. Am I out of touch? Out of Touch Dear Donna replies: Dear Out of Touch, While handwritten follow-up notes after an interview were once the norm, in the technology-driven world we live in, typed letters are now considered the norm and are...READ MORE »
How important is it for me to get an MSN as opposed to an MA in something else?
Question: Dear Donna, How important is it for me to get an MSN as opposed to an MA in something else? Will it hurt my future career opportunities if I don't have an MSN? I don't plan to stay in the hospital setting. Not Sure About an MSN Dear Donna replies: Dear Not Sure About an MSN, If you don't plan to stay in the hospital or clinical setting and don't intend to teach nurses in a college setting, then an MSN is...READ MORE »
Will working as a patient care tech while I'm in school count as experience once I graduate?
Question: Dear Donna, I am a student nurse who will graduate in 2015. I know the job market is tough out there and recruiters are asking for experience. Will working as a patient care tech while I'm in school count as experience? It will be difficult for me to work while going to school, but I will do it if it will help me get a job after graduation. Concerned Student Nurse Dear Donna replies: Dear Concerned Student...READ MORE »
What is the difference is between case manager and care manager?
Question: Dear Donna, Can you tell me what the difference is between case manager and care manager? I am seeing openings for both, and I am confused about the difference, if any, between them. Confused Dear Donna replies: Dear Confused, There is a distinct difference between the two positions. Nurse case managers focus on care coordination, financial management and resource utilization to yield cost-effective...READ MORE »
How can a psych nurse who wants to transition into med/surg nursing make her resume more marketable?
Question: Dear Donna, I have been working as a psychiatric nurse for three years and would like to apply for a medical/surgical position. How can I make my resume more marketable? Psych Nurse Who Wants Med-Surg Dear Donna replies: Dear Psych Nurse Who Wants Med-Surg, For starters, know the hospital job market for nurses is rapidly changing and evolving. Hospitals are slowly downsizing as more care is delivered in...READ MORE »
What type of part-time work can an experienced nurse with an ADN get after being out of the workforce for a year?
Question: Dear Donna, I am a two-year degree nurse with more than 13 years of experience. I had to retire from a previous nursing job due to medical issues. I have taken care of the medical issues and now am looking for work. My experience as an RN was in endoscopy. Now a lot of the job postings are stating a minimum qualification of BSN even for the area in which I have experience, or the job notices state...READ MORE »
Will hospitals or other institutions hire nurses who have a criminal record?
Question: Dear Donna, Will hospitals or other institutions hire nurses with a criminal record? My partner is waiting for seven years to go by with a clean record before he applies to a nursing school program, but I fear he may be wasting his time if this obstacle is too great to overcome for a career in the health field. There were several misdemeanor charges, some dropped, but no felonies. This was five years ago...READ MORE »
How long does a nurse need to work in a hospital before moving into other specialties or work areas?
Question: Dear Donna, How long does a nurse need to work in a hospital before moving into other specialties or work areas? I am a fairly new nurse and have worked for two years now on a telemetry unit. I would like to try some other things outside of the hospital like school nursing or public health nursing. Experienced nurses are telling me I should get at least four years of hospital experience and others are...READ MORE »
Do I have anything to worry about since I forgot to mention I take Ativan when I went for a drug screen as part of job hiring process?
Question: Dear Donna, I interviewed for a position at a long-term care facility and submitted a urine sample for drug screening. I didn't think to tell them I'm on a low 0.5 mg dose of Ativan which I take to help sleep sometimes. They didn't ask me, and I didn't think about it until after I got home. Is this something they test for? If benzodiazepines showed up on the screen, would they not hire me? I have a...READ MORE »
Can you recommend some nursing associations for a new nurse to join?
Question: Dear Donna, I'm a new nurse with a BSN degree. Can you recommend some nursing associations for me to join? New Nurse Dear Donna replies: Dear New Nurse, Congratulations and welcome to the profession! Your question is an important one because it is through our nursing associations that we create community in nursing. And without that community, you may survive but you will never thrive in this profession....READ MORE »
What can nursing staff do if their unit manager overlooks concerns about bullying by a clinical nurse manager?
Question: Hi Donna, I work in a hospital and have two bosses, a clinical manager and a nurse manager. My clinical manager is a bully. She will insult and embarrass staff in front of people. She harasses staff, constantly changes rules and allows some staff, such as our nursing assistants to sit and mess around and not do their jobs. There was a recent incident where the PCA was sitting watching TV on her phone and...READ MORE »
Is it too late to send a thank you note two weeks after an interview?
Question: Dear Donna, I had an interview two weeks ago and haven't heard anything back yet. Is it too late to send a thank you note? I recently became aware that I should have done so. Belated Thank-you Dear Donna replies: Dear Belated Thank You, While the interview follow-up or thank-you note is traditionally sent within 24 hours after the interview, it is perfectly okay to send it now. If the position isn't filled...READ MORE »
What can I do if my manager at my new job does not allow me to work to my full capacity and the department director will not do anything about it?
Question: Dear Donna, I have been in my current position for two years. I came to the position with great experience and was told I would be an asset to the department. Unfortunately, my role has been very much diminished as my manager will not let me do anything. She always feels her way is better. I have tried to discuss this with her and she becomes defensive. I have tried to speak with the department director...READ MORE »
What's the best route for a person with a bachelor's degree in neuroscience to go about becoming a pediatric nurse?
Question: Dear Donna, I recently graduated with a bachelor's degree in neuroscience. I have now decided I would like to become a pediatric nurse, but I would like some advice on how to go about it. I realize I would have to complete several prerequisites and retake courses to improve my GPA before even applying to nursing school. I would plan on taking courses at a community college or state school. After completing...READ MORE »
What can an RN do when she realizes the new job she's in is not a good fit?
Question: Dear Donna, I recently accepted a position in an office setting because it was close to home and seemed like a pleasant environment. After two months, I realized this is just not the right place for me. I find the routine boring and just don't feel I'm a good fit. I'm not a quitter and have never left a job after so short a time, but I just don't see how I can stay here long term. I dread going into work...READ MORE »