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 experience within the last year
I will have been off work for a year in September. I am 56 years old and not interested in investing the time and money for a BSN. I am interested in working only part time. Any suggestions as far as looking
Dear Donna replies:
The job market for nurses is changing every day. Experience does matter but it is not enough these days in some settings. Hospitals are primarily hiring BSN nurses and only those with very current hospital experience. But outpatient, home care and alternate care facilities are hiring other nurses.
I don’t know where you’re looking for work but by all means seek employment in outpatient endoscopy centers if you’re still interested in that specialty. In fact, ambulatory care settings are growing and thriving these days.
You cannot rely exclusively on classified ads to find openings and get jobs. You have to be more proactive. Contact endoscopy facilities directly whether you see an opening at the facility or not. Contact your former coworkers in this specialty and others, including physicians you know. Get out to local chapter meetings of the Society of Gastroenterology Nurses Association (http://www.sgna.org/).
If not a member, you can attend as a guest.
I also recommend you attend local chapter meetings of the American Association of Ambulatory Care Nurses (www.aaacn.org) and/or the American Nurses Association (www.nursingworld.org/) as a guest. Networking is a very effective way to find jobs and get hired.
Attend area job fairs too. See what’s coming up (http://www.nurse.com/events/career-fairs) Read How to get the most out of attending a career fair (www.Nurse.com/Cardillo/Career-fair).
At the young age of 56 and with life expectancy close to 100 these days, you have plenty of living and working ahead of you. Don’t write off higher education just yet. Read about my experience going back to school as an adult in the article, Go Back to School and Change Your Life (www.Nurse.com/Cardillo/Back-to-School) and read the article Master the Scholarship Game (www.Nurse.com/Cardillo/Scholarship-Game) to see how to go after scholarship money to help finance your BSN.
All nurses need to learn and use new self-marketing and job-finding skills in today’s competitive market. You may not be used to doing things the way I suggest, but it is the way things are done today, especially when you are breaking back into the job market. When what you’re doing isn’t working, it’s time to try a new approach.