Didn’t get a new grad offer? Don’t panic – here’s what you can do!

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Not every nursing and midwifery students gets an offer into a new grad program. Some people make it onto an LHD or hospital’s eligibility list, while others simply don’t get offered one. IT’S A MYTH that you need a new grad placement to launch your career.

Here are some things you can do if you don’t get into a program.

  1. Don’t panic

Not getting into a new grad program is not the end of the world. You’re still brand new in your career, so the world is your oyster! There are still plenty of ways you can get a job and contribute to your profession.

  1. Get in contact with recruiters

This one’s especially important for those who made a hospital’s eligibility list or are currently working as assistants in nursing. Give the recruiter a call to see if they have any positions available – even those outside of the new grad program. You’ll never know, they might have an opening, or be able to point you in the right direction.

  1. Get in touch with the places you went to for your pracs

The networks you build during your clinical placements are also an important link to utilise during your job search. If you’ve made some good connections during your prac, get in contact with the educator, nursing or midwifery manager, or local Director of Nursing. You might find they could do with an extra hand.

  1. Try going rural or regional

Many rural and regional hospitals and facilities don’t fill their new grad placements and nursing and midwifery positions. If you’re keen for a little adventure, see what options lay in facilities outside the big metropolitan areas. The knowledge you could gain from this experience could be invaluable. Contact the DON and show your keenness.

  1. Apply for non-new grad positions

Just because a job says you need “12 months experience”, it doesn’t mean they’ll hire exclusively from those who have it. With the current nursing shortage, some facilities further afield are struggling to fill nursing and midwifery positions to their requirements under the law. Because of this, they might consider taking you on even without the requisite experience. You mightn’t always get the job – but it doesn’t hurt to try!

  1. Broaden your horizons

Have you considered working in Primary Health? What about a role in Aged Care or telehealth? There are plenty of opportunities as nurses and midwives outside of the mainstream hospital system. If you’re willing to go beyond your limits, you might find there are positions in areas you never thought to look.

  1. Be persistent

When everything seems to be going pear-shaped, just keep going. It might seem like a hard slog, but if you’re keen to be part of our professions, there are definitely opportunities there for you. Send another email, make another phone call, apply for another job – you’ll never know what opportunities might present themselves if you just keep going.

If you need any more support, NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association members can email gensec@nswnma.asn.au. If you’re not yet a member, you can also sign up here.

You can also receive added assistance by attending the Association’s Student to New Grad workshop. We’ll be able to assist you with your applications, and where to find jobs to apply for!


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