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I have a restricted license and can't find a job. What are my options other than giving up?

Monday June 25, 2012
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Dear Donna,

I have a restricted RN license and require supervision for one year, as if I were a new graduate. I did not hurt anyone, do not have an addiction and am very depressed that I cannot find a job. I have been a nurse since 2007 and nursing is my passion. Do I have any options, other than giving up something I’ve worked so hard to achieve?


Dear Donna replies:

Dear Restricted,

When you have obstacles to overcome, you need to rely more on networking for job opportunities. Read “Picking up the pieces of your career” (www.Nurse.com/Cardillo/Pieces).

As the article suggests, volunteer in a medical or healthcare setting while you seek paid employment. Volunteering is a good way to get your foot in the door somewhere and often leads to paid employment. Consider a local public health department, blood bank, free clinic, etc.

Use your network of friends, family and professional colleagues to find an opportunity. Let them know your situation and ask for help via referrals, leads and introductions. People are more inclined to take a chance on a person when someone they know and trust recommends them.

Beyond that you can consult a nursing career coach for help and support. Find a coach through your state chapter of the American Nurses Association, (www.nursingworld.org) whether or not you are a member, or by asking around. You can do an Internet search for "RN Career Coach."

Best wishes,

Donna Cardillo, RN, MA, well-known career guru, is Nursing Spectrum/NurseWeek’s “Dear Donna” and author of “Your First Year as a Nurse: Making the Transition from Total Novice to Successful Professional” and “The ULTIMATE Career Guide for Nurses: Practical Advice for Thriving at Every Stage of Your Career.” Information about the books is available at www.Nurse.com/CE/7010 and www.Nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to www.Nurse.com/Asktheexperts/Deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call 800-866-0919 or visit http://Events.nursingspectrum.com/Seminar.