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I earned my BSN years ago, but I haven’t practiced yet. I have an interview for a new RN position coming up. How should I prepare for it?


Dear Donna,

I graduated with my BSN in 2001 and was going to get a minor in health education, but I could not finish because of family matters. I could not even review and take my NCLEX. I worked at a non-nursing job for about five years and then began doing health education workshops for people living with chronic conditions. When I worked with these patients, I felt the urge to get back into clinical nursing and get some hands-on experience.

I got out my nursing books and reviewed them and recently passed the second route. When I started looking for an RN position, I found out the “phenomenon” you have mentioned is so true regarding the job market for inexperienced nurses. I have an interview for a new grad RN program, and I’m excited and nervous. I feel as if this is my only chance and that I must take my best shot. Please advise me on how to prepare and how to respond about being out of nursing for such a long time.


Dear Donna replies:

Dear Yvonne,

Congratulations on passing NCLEX! That is quite an accomplishment and should be celebrated. In spite of a tight job market, you will be able to get your nursing career started. It’s great that you have an interview coming up, but it’s not your only shot. Read the article “Interview to Knock Their Socks Off” at to be sure to interview well. You’ll find additional related articles at

Regarding your delayed start in nursing, be honest to a point and tell them life got in the way — that you had family matters that needed your full-time attention, but those issues are now resolved and that you are eager and enthusiastic to start your nursing career.

You might add that there’s no place you’d rather start it than at that facility and that you would be grateful if they took a chance on you. If there’s any way you can get your hands on a copy of “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career” before then, you’ll read much more interview advice there. Find out more at Also, be sure to read “Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition From Total Novice to Successful Professional” as soon as you can to start your new career off on the right foot. Persistence and determination will always win out in the end!

Sending prayers and good wishes
your way for a positive outcome,

By | 2009-07-14T00:00:00-04:00 July 14th, 2009|Categories: Blogs, Nursing careers and jobs|0 Comments

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