May 1, 2013

The nursing students are out in full force

I'm not seeing them at work, since I haven't returned to work yet.  They're at my local coffee house, studying for finals.

There's the students of a few different schools there.  They're also all at different points in their education:  some are brand new baby nurses while others are getting ready for the NCLEX, and there's the whole spectrum in between.  Some come in clinical gear; others show up in school sweatshirts.  A few come in casual wear.

They're all hunched over textbooks and computers, endlessly quizzing themselves and their peers.  I'm there drinking coffee, knitting and answering their questions in my mind...it's kind of a refresher course.  I'm doing pretty well for a psych nurse out on leave.

I feel for these students.  I remember the days of endless studying, though I never had study groups at coffee houses.  I preferred to study alone; when I did join a study group, we were either at the library or one of our homes.

I also feel for the ones about to graduate, as the job market shows no signs of improving.

Now, the astute reader or nursing forum fan has probably figured out I'm in California, where new grad unemployment rates hover just under 50%.  It really does suck to be a new grad out there...there's too much competition.  Every day I read the forum threads and listen to the scuttlebutt at work, and I thank God that I served my new grad time on the other coast.  Especially since I'm not a BSN...yet.  I'd probably still be looking for work and I've been here going on nearly two years now.

My facility has started interviewing for its new grad programs, and I expect to see nervous students/internal employees milling the halls when I return next month.  My facility does not move fast in this process.

So this is my last month of leave.  It could be the start of my last month and a half, as I haven't decided exactly when I will start working in June.  I may do it June 1 or stick with my original plan of June 15.  We shall see.

I'll admit, it's going to be a little harder to leave little one #2 than I thought.  He's so damn cute and entertaining right now.  But leave I must, especially to stay competitive in this job market...thank God I can do part-time for right now.

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