I thought I would take some time and explain what a nurse residency program is and a little about the one I am in. I am not going to name the hospital I am working for or the program. I need to keep some privacy and hope people can understand. Also, please understand that all programs and companies are different so the information I share may not apply to you if you get into another program. This is just a post about what the program is and my experience so far.
So what is a nurse residency program? It is a program dedicated to new graduate nurses to assist them as they transition into their first professional nursing role. The program consists of a series of work and learning experiences that emphasize developing clinical and leadership skills necessary for the advanced beginner nurse to become a successful and integral part of the health care team. The program incorporates seminars, educational classes and research to educate the new nurses.
I never planned or really thought I would get into one of these programs. I was honestly just looking for a job. When I applied to my particular hospital I did not think I was going to get accepted. I applied online and a few days later got an email offering me a group interview. Then I thought…”I definitely am not getting in.” Because I never heard of a group interview and I thought that there was no way I would stand out in a group of ten other people. To my surprise, I was given a second interview on the unit of my choice. After that interview, I again received an email and was offered the position. I can not speak for other programs but the process was simple. My program is a year long and at the end we have a graduation.
Throughout the next year our group will have education classes, workshops, seminars, tests and a research project. I also will have a preceptor while I work on the unit for a few weeks. While the program is overwhelming at first I feel like this is going to prepare me even more to be the best nurse I can be and provide my patients with safe quality care. It is as simple as that! It honestly feels like a continuation of nursing school.
A quick breakdown on how my first week went….
Day 1: Basic hospital orientation
Day 2: Clinical based orientation
Day 3: Meet preceptor and computer training
Day 4: Medication Safety Workshop
Day 5: IV Workshop
And that is that! It was pretty basic and simple. So I hope this helps you understand nurse residency programs a little better.