When graduating from an LPN to RN program, few things are more worrisome than the lag time between the completion of your education and the beginning of your career. The preparation for your career not only includes your coursework, but it also includes the extra effort made throughout your training.
There are steps that can be taken to increase your ability to graduate from an LPN to RN program with a full-time offer.
If you want an opportunity to spend shifts with a professional RN currently working in the healthcare field, career shadowing is an excellent way to observe the minute-by-minute experiences a working RN confronts while in the workforce.
As a shadow, you will see the realities of the day-to-day tasks performed in nursing, your network of contacts within the field will expand, you will see the vital ways in which nurses fit into the larger healthcare field, you will get the opportunity to ask honest questions and get honest answers, and you will see a variety of work environments in which nurses must adapt.
Internships allow you first-hand experience with the skills and tasks that can only be learned through hands-on training. Interning means that you will be able to explore a specialty, show a hospital or clinic what your best attributes are, learn through experience, pad your resume, and put you steps ahead of fellow classmates in the career search.
Networking Within the Field Through Clinical Experience
Whether you shadow, intern, apprentice, or simply seek out professionals for questioning, everyone you meet can be used as a future contact and resource.
Those you shadow and those who mentor you will develop a concern for your career and well-being. Many professionals appreciate the opportunity to assist someone new to the field.
Apprenticeship to a Mentor
An apprenticeship can be rewarding to those who wish to specialize early in their careers, as well as an opportunity to begin a career early. The right internship will allow you to actually begin working in the field as you learn and finish your LPN to RN program. It is still a mentor-student model, but the goal is for the student to become an independently working employee.
Accumulate References from Professors
As a college student, no one knows the best attributes of your work more than those professors that have worked closely with you throughout your training. When a professor believes in a student, they will go the extra mile to assist that student in their career. Ask your professors to write letters of recommendation. Accumulate those letters that will show an employer the respect that your relationships with your professors have garnered.
Register in Prep Classes for the NCLEX
The NCLEX can be a challenging way to end your LPN to RN program. Many nursing schools offer prep classes for the NCLEX. You will become familiar with the NCLEX formatting and you will learn what will be expected of you on the day of the exam. Both benefits are necessary if you experience any exam anxiety or if you just want to be confident that you are prepared.
Your strategy for becoming employable after graduating from an LPN to RN program should be multi-faceted. While you are in training and moving through your schooling, your time is valuable. Use it to increase your chances of a successful beginning to your career search.
If you use these six strategies, you will be steps ahead of your competition in the job market - which is exactly how you want to begin your career after successfully graduating from your LPN to RN program. If you are looking to advance from LPN to RN, check out the Athena Career Academy.