As a nurse, it is important to have a career care plan. The career care plan serves as a road map illuminating the path that one will take as they transition from student to BSN graduate. Below I will detail my career care plan, which will include the requirements for the State of Florida, holistic life balance, various stressors and challenges, steps to becoming a lifelong learner, and plans for making professional contributions to at least one professional nursing community.
Transition into the Professional Nursing Role
When transforming from pupil to BSN graduate, there are several activities that should be taken. According to Anbari (2015), there are three steps that a graduate transitioning into the professional nursing role should take.
- First, they must evaluate their motivations, which will serve as their guide as they transition. The motivations will inform one of their priorities once they transition from student to graduate.
- Second, the student must establish their base of support. Transitioning is very challenging, and if one is not careful, then they may experience burnout by taking on too much at the same time. Anbari (2015) notes that having a strong support structure in the form of one’s family, friends, or people that have made the transition successfully will increase the chances of seamless transitions.
- Third, one must anticipate the challenges that they are going to face.
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The first year or even the first few years will be fraught with challenges as the student strives to transition from an academic setting to a professional setting. There are going to be many challenges, and if the student is prepared for them, they will be able to handle them better. Transitioning is a highly personal process, and the factors will influence one individual will be different from the factors that will influence the other. Therefore, one must consider the things that will personally influence their transition.
Requirements for RN License in the State of Florida
The state in which I seek employment in Florida. The Florida Board of Nursing (2019) has set the following requirements for one to get an RN license.
- First, one must graduate from a nursing education program that is approved by the state board.
- Second, the candidate is required to the NCLEX-RN licensing exam after they complete the educational requirements. Before the candidate can take the exam, they are required to apply to the Florida Board.
- Third, the candidate will go through fingerprinting where they will pay $175 for the application and the licensing.
- Fourth, the board will review their application, and if the candidate is successful, they will be given details of how to register for the exam. If they pass the exam, then they will receive the license to practice in the State of Florida if not they have two more attempts.
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Positions for a New Graduate BSN
There are a number of positions that are available for a graduate. Baptist Health is accepting submissions for its graduate placement program, which starts in February 2020 (Glassdoor, 2019). The requirement is that one must have been an RN for less than 12 months. One can only apply if they have an active license. The motivator of working in that position is that there is an array of opportunities in the medical, surgical, and emergency services units.
The other motivator is that due to the opportunities, one will learn a lot within a professional setting. The detractor is that one must be willing to travel to all Baptist facilities and all that traveling may not be wise for a graduate. Additionally, after the program, one may be asked for a two-year commitment. If the experience was not as fruitful as one hoped, then asking for a two-year commitment will not bear fruit.
Another opportunity is available at CoreMedical Group. The group offers opportunities for new graduates to join their Med/Surg Units. The requirements for the application are that one must be a registered nurse, one must be prepared to train into the medical and surgical units, and one must have previous experience in those units (Career Builder, 2019).
The chief motivator is that there are tremendous growth opportunities. The chief detractor is it requires previous experience which is a requirement that a recent graduate may not be able to meet. The other opportunity is at North Broward Hospital District. The hospital offers a residency for new graduates. The requirements are that one must be a recent graduate (under 1 year), a BSN is preferred, and one must have a license to practice (LinkedIn, 2019). The key motivator is that the opportunity offers excellent benefits in the form of a competitive salary and tremendous growth opportunities. The key detractor is that it is quite far from where I currently live.
The overall career goal is to become a nurse manager or get into nursing leadership. Before that, my main career goal is to find an area of specialization. The top specialization choice is Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner (PMHNP) and the second is Family Nurse Practitioner. While the overall goal is to get into nursing leadership, the immediate goal is to identify an area of specialization.
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Holistic Life Balance
There are some steps that I will apply to realize an all-inclusive life equilibrium in my private life as well as in my part as a qualified nurse within the first year and at five years. First, I will strive to set aside time where I can relax and recharge either in silence or together with my family. Second, I will find something creative or physically strenuous to relive all the stresses that are bound to accumulate. Blum (2015) suggests that the nurse can do something like painting, reading, or even meeting with friends to discuss ideas.
Nurturing one’s creative side will help overcome various stressors. In relation to professional life, it will be important to relate to patients in a professional and respectful manner. Professionalism helps maintain distance between the nurse and the patient and keep anything inappropriate from happening. At five years, I will set apart a period to converse with a counselor. The nursing profession will expose me to some highly traumatic experiences that will be quite stressful. Talking with a therapist will help me handle the issues, and that will aid in achieving a holistic life balance.
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Stressors and Challenges
There are various stressors and challenges that will occur within the first year. The first challenge is burnout, which may occur due to the nurse caring too much or simply taking on a very big workload. Oliveira, Sousa, & Nascimento (2019) note that nurses should go through resilience training programs that will help them cope with the stressors of work. The other stressor is that the nursing environment is expected to be highly stressful. Finding times to relax, spend time with families and friends, and also talking with a therapist will help in dealing with a stressful environment.
At five years, the biggest challenge that will have been experienced is working long hours. As an individual nurse, I will not have the power to control the hours that I work. That is why I plan to get into nursing leadership so that I can lobby for the hiring of more nurses to meet the required patient to nurse ratio.
The nursing occupation necessitates that one become a lifetime student. I plan to get a specialty education once I decide my area of specialty. After deciding specialty, I will look for an appropriate MSN program that meets all the requirements that I need. Preferably, an online program will be best since it will allow me to work while I study. I eventually plan to get advanced nursing education and eventually become an APRN. Furthermore, I plan on joining the American Nurses Association (ANA). One of the benefits of joining the association is that they have various professional courses that they offer at subsidized prices. At five years I believe that I will have settled on my specialty. Afterward, I will join the nursing association concerned with that specialty and they too will have various courses that they offer.
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I plan on contributing to the nursing professional community by focusing on the roles of nurses in improving patient outcomes. I believe that the nurse is the first line of defense when it comes to improving patient outcomes because they are usually the primary caregiver. The physician may detail the course of treatment, but it is the nurse who has to walk with the patient and ensure that those details are met. At five years, I would like to join an association that lobbies for the expansion of nurses’ scope of practice in Florida
As it stands, the nurse can only follow the directions of the physician and they cannot even prescribed drugs. In seeking to expand the nurses’ scope of practice is to give the nurse the power to operate in the fulness of all their knowledge. Personally, I will seek the guidance of an older and more experienced nurse who will help me monitor outcomes data for patient quality and safety. After I have gained experience, it is something that I will be able to do on my own.
It is important for a student to have a career plan that will help them during the transition from school into the professional environment. For the career care plan to be successful, the student must identify the state in which they are seeking employment because different states have different hiring requirements, and the scope of practice tends to differ from state to state. My state of practice will be Florida. For a holistic balance, I will work when I work, and rest when I rest. The key stressors will be the possibility of burnout and career stagnation. Setting aside time to spend with the family will help overcome the stressors. In the end, I will be a lifelong learner and seek to offer professional contributions to my community, and that will help me have a fulfilling career.
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