Finding a job can be difficult. The competition is stiff, and the available jobs often require a lot of personal sacrifice. However, that doesn’t mean you have to put up with bad food, cold rooms, and no influence over how your assignments are run. With the help of nursing internships and practices, you can get the experience you need to land that dream job. But where to begin? Read on to learn more about this unique option for gaining valuable work experience while in school. What Is an Internship or Practice? In nursing, an internship is a paid position that requires at least 1 year of full-time study. An unpaid internship is a great choice for students who do not want to take on debt or leave their jobs before they have professional experience. The two terms are sometimes used interchangeably by those who do not understand their differences well enough. Here is what you need to know about them:
What Is an Internship in Nursing?
An intern in nursing is a student working under the supervision of an experienced professional for a period of time. You may work in a hospital, clinic, nursing home, or other institutional setting. Alternatively, you may choose to work as an in-house nurse’s aide while completing your internship. Internships are typically 2-4 months long, and you can expect to work 20-40 hours per week during your internship. You may choose to work in a hospital, clinic, or nursing home. There are many benefits to interning, including:
What Is an Internship in Practice?
A practice, on the other hand, is the same as an actual nursing facility or hospital. The only difference is that the staff members working in a practice are all doctors, nurses, or other healthcare practitioners. The hours are similar, and the work is also similar. Practicing nurses work in similar settings as those in a hospital. The main difference between an internship and a practice is the level of responsibility. An internship is generally less responsibility than a practice, which means you have more autonomy and are able to make decisions on your own. This is great if you are unsure if a position is right for you. You can decide whether or not you want to take on responsibility after you have gained some experience.
Be Prepared to Work Long Hours and weekends
Many internships require you to work long hours. There are many internships that require you to work full-time, and some internships will also require you to work weekends. This is normal and expected. Some internships will also require you to work night shifts, and others will only require you to work on weekdays. If you must work a full-time job during your internship, you must be ready to do so. Try to mentally prepare yourself by doing your research on the job and being open to feedback. If you don’t think you would be willing to work long hours, weekends, or night shifts, you might be better off avoiding the opportunity to work in a practice.
Be Ready to Help Patients of All Conditions
No one ever planned on working with patients all the time. That’s why many internships include an introduction to clinical practice—so you can see what it’s like to help people in real life. Many internships also include on-the-job training, so you’ll eventually be ready to take care of patients on your own. Unfortunately, some internships do not. Some internships will require you to work only during your first year of nursing. After that, you’ll need to find a practice that accepts new patients. Some internships will require you to work in a hospital setting, which is a different type of practice. Regardless of which internships you take, you will likely spend the majority of your time helping patients. This is normal and expected. Some internships will require you to spend the majority of your time with the most frequently ill patients, while others will allow you more flexibility.
Be Willing to Train New Staff Members
Some internships will train new staff members as well. This is a chance for you to practice patient care and work with people who are on the same level as you. However, be careful. Some internships will train new staff members to work as “assistants”, which means they will take care of patients like you, but under the supervision of the main staff. If you want to work as an assistant, you must be willing to work under the supervision of the main staff. Some internships allow you to choose whether or not this option is included, and if it is, there is a chance that you will spend most of your time working as an assistant.
Be Willing to Speak Your Mind When You disagree with your Supervisor
Some internships, such as those in community-based settings, will have supervisory unsupervisory staff members. In such cases, you will likely be spending the majority of your time under the supervision of your supervisor, who will likely be the main staff member. If you are unhappy with the way your assigned internship is proceeding, or if you have questions or concerns about a patient’s condition, you must speak to your supervisor immediately. You must not keep your concerns to yourself. Telling your supervisor how you feel, in private as well as in public, will help you get the support you need and show your employer that you trust them to take care of you.
Finding a job can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be scary. With a little hard work, you can land a great job in nursing and get the experience you need to move toward your career goals. To get the best internship possible, apply to programs that you are interested in and that fit your schedule. Take your time and get to know the processes involved in applying to programs. You will spend the majority of your time in school applying and getting accepted, so take your time and make sure you are applying to programs that are right for you.