The Swedish RN Residency Program offers integrated classroom, simulation and clinical experiences under the guidance and support of Preceptors, Clinical Educators and Professional Development Specialists—and is one of the best ways new-grad nurses can get quickly acclimated to working at Swedish. We spoke recently with Nurse Resident Jessica C. about starting a second career in nursing, what brought her to Swedish and why she loves working in Labor and Delivery.
A new career in nursing
For Jessica, nursing is a second career. She worked as a high school science teacher then at the Pacific Science Center, then took some time off to have a family. When it was time to go back to work, she thought of nursing. Says Jessica, “I looked at a bunch of different careers in healthcare and I landed on nursing, which actually kind of surprised me. I wasn’t really expecting that. I think I had a misconception about what nurses do. The more I learned about it, the more I realized what a good fit it was for me.”
Despite the COVID-related challenges of the program, which included online labs instead of in-person ones and using equipment at home without the benefit of being near classmates and professors, Jessica completed the accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. Since the pandemic meant she didn’t get much hands-on experience at school, she knew she wanted to do a residency program which would give her that training. “I felt like I needed support. I was very grateful that there were programs available to train new nurses—because I really felt like I needed that.”
Finding her footing at Swedish
“I’d heard great things about the Swedish Residency program,” Jessica says. So, she applied for the next cohort at Swedish Edmonds in Labor and Delivery—and she’s glad she did. According to this non-morning-person who had to get used to her new schedule—and juggling working and parenting—while it’s a fast-paced program that was overwhelming at first, Jessica’s getting the hang of it. “I think at first just all the information flowing into me was kind of jarring. But everyone’s been really helpful and supportive. Now I’m like, ‘Okay, I can do this. This is manageable.’ I’m gaining knowledge and comfort. You never know what it’s going to be when you walk in the door in the morning, and I love that.”
Critical thinking skills: the science and the medicine
Jessica says that she was surprised by the level of critical thinking, science and medicine that nurses do on a daily basis. “I’m almost embarrassed to say that,” she says. “I feel like now it’s my duty to let the world know how much nurses do. It’s all still so new to me, but it’s feels really challenging in all the right ways and interesting and dynamic. It fits all my interests: wanting to help people and think critically at the same time. It combines the science and the medicine.”
Working in Labor and Delivery
As a mother who’s been active in the Program for Early Parenthood Support (PEPS), Jessica has long been interested in babies and the labor and delivery process. Say Jessica, “For my own pregnancy, I had almost every complication in the book. And despite those complications, I just think it’s the most miraculous thing in the world. I want to be able to help people through that process of giving birth—I really enjoy helping parents through the emotions of that experience.”
Jessica says one of the best things about her job is that she gets to know patients well. She fondly remembers her relationship with her own labor and delivery RNs. She says, “Coincidentally, I’m working with one of the nurses who delivered my baby now.”
Another relationship that stands out for Jessica is a couple who was getting ready to have their first child. “They seemed really nervous and like they didn’t want me and my preceptor to leave. They were comfortable with us and appreciated our care and that just made me feel really good.”
Jessica says, “Supporting people through this incredible life transition can be overwhelming but it’s also amazing and exciting. Watching people see their babies for the first time is remarkable. There’s nothing like that.”
Interested in an RN Residency at Swedish? View all opportunities here.