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How do I find a hospital reentry program?

Tuesday February 10, 2009
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Dear Donna,

I have a current active license, but I need to take a refresher course so I can start working in the hospital setting again. I worked for 10 years and floated nine of those. I was trained for the ICU and ED, plus all the floors. Currently, I am studying for the GRE, which I hope to take in the next three months. My ultimate goal is to become a nurse practitioner. I am very much into health and nutrition and prevention. I want to find a job that will give me a refresher course (mainly clinical) and that will eventually pay for my education. Any jobs or hospitals you could recommend would be helpful.


Dear Donna replies:

Dear Laura,

It sounds like a plan! Some hospitals do offer reentry programs for experienced nurses. To find them you would just have to make phone calls to facilities in your area and ask around. You could also attend some nursing career fairs in your area and speak with all the recruiters there. You might also attend a local chapter meeting of your state nurses association (whether or not you are a member) and network with folks there to try to find such a hospital. Read “Reentering the Workforce at http://www.dcardillo.com/articles/reenterwork.html for more ideas.

For funding your education, you may be able to get some tuition reimbursement, but there is plenty of scholarship money out there, even for graduate school, if you go after it. Read “Master the Scholarship Game” http://www.dcardillo.com/articles/scholargame.html to find out how to go about it.

Onward and upward!

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 http://www.nurse.com/CE/7010 and http://www.nurse.com/CE/7250, respectively. To ask Donna your question, go to http://www.nurse.com/asktheexperts/deardonna. Find a “Dear Donna” seminar near you: Call (800) 866-0919 or visit http://events.nursingspectrum.com/Seminar.