And Speaking of Wishy Washy

I have a friend who works in my building, who’s been in research for 10 years now in a position very similar to mine. She is also in nursing school in the same program at a different campus. She’s sort of 1 semester ahead of me, she finished 102 in the spring, but they have the summer off at their campus, so when fall starts I’ll have caught up.

She came to see me this week and told me she’s leaving research. She put in for a transfer over to the hospital across the street to be a patient care technician. It’s a big paycut for her, but assuming I got an equivalent offer, I would only be making $1 less an hour. That’s probably not enough money to impact our daily living. Actually, she will now be making exactly what I was making before I got my raise in January. So this had thrown my brain into a total whirlwind.

It’s all I can think about now, I’ve been writing and rewriting a list of pros and cons in my head since we had this conversation three days ago. Yesterday I went up to her lab and sat and talked with her for an hour. I’m really thinking about it.

The deal is this: I am definately going to get an MSN after I finish school, I just haven’t decided in what. I’ve promised Hubbin’ I would “keep my options open” as far as anesthesia goes. The anesthesia program has the most stringent admissions requirements, so “keeping my options open” essentially means doing everything as though I’m planning to go to anesthesia school. The anesthesia program stipulates they want you to have a full year of critical care experience before you begin the program. So my goal is to begin working in an ICU as close to finishing school as possible.

I decided I would hold off on anything until I spoke with my aunt who works over at the hospital in one of those “higher up” positions and ask her if she thought working as a PCT for the next 10 months till I finish school would help me to get hired in an ICU after graduation. We talked for a long time but the verdict was pretty much she definately thinks I should go switch to working in a med-surg or ICU unit as a PCT. That if I work in the ICU as a PCT it will make it extremely easy for me to get hired in the same unit.

But I get wishy washy… We’ve scheduled our fall classes and good lord I’ve already started having panic attacks. lol. I’m going to be absolutely worthless for just about ANYTHING starting this fall. I have 40 hours of work scheduled a week and I will have 22 hours of scheduled class time. That doesn’t include any skills testing which we have to do in our “free time” and obviously doesn’t include reading/studying. So there’s a little part of me that’s nervous about switching to a less flexible job where I would be punching in and out versus one where I can take a day off on a whim or leave early if need be.

…buuut then there’s the experience and potentially moving the whole grad school thing along faster which in turn means I’d be done with school faster. Gosh I just don’t know.

Plus I feel a little bit like a bad person because I really like my boss and she has three full time employees. 1 is leaving for med school mid July and she’s expecting me to be here through May so I feel like I’d be screwing her over. (Which my friend who is already transfering pointed out I really need to be looking out for my own career rather than my MD/PhD boss… true).

Any advice? Comments? Suggestions?

2 thoughts on “And Speaking of Wishy Washy

  1. These questions are very tricky. I would say that your hubby is right to make sure you keep your options open for anesthesia only because you don’t want to look back later and be disappointed. Also, I think it’s OK to look out for you sometimes, even if that means it puts someone else in an uncomfortable situation. I would imagine your boss will understand as they didn’t become a Phd, MD by doing what was best for everyone else.

  2. I’ll second what Ashley said – you have to look out for you.

    Also, working in an area of particular interest is going to be a huge advantage when you get out of school. You’ll already know how to put foleys in, NGs in, how to document, and how to start IVs by the time you graduate.

    The hardest part about starting a new job is “where do I find all of the stuff to put the foley/NG/IV in?”

    You’ll have the know-how to do the technical part of your job in the ICU – but knowing where stuff is, what the routines of the unit are, and what your coworkers “quirks” are, will make starting a new job A LOT easier.

    Stay on track of following YOUR dreams and setting up YOUR future. Your boss will understand.


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