Your RT program is drawing to a close. You’re studying for final exams. You’re getting ready to take your NBRC boards. And . . . oh yes . . . there’s that little thing called FINDING A JOB too.
Certainly, the end of your program is the beginning of big things for your career, but dealing with all of these issues at once can be a little overwhelming. And the most anxiety-producing item on the plate is the job hunt.
Given the competitive job market we’re in right now, you need to arm yourself with all the knowledge you can about what managers are looking for in new grads. Jamie White, MHA, RRT-NPS, director of ancillary care and support services at Our Children’s House Children’s Health in Dallas, TX, has some great advice.
“My top three strengths I look for when interviewing a new graduate are communication, teamwork, and decision and problem solving skills,” says White, who oversees a staff of 21 therapists at the facility, which consists of both hospital and outpatient components, and cares for children with special health care needs.
It’s a demanding setting and job candidates have to prove they are up for the challenge. “We are working with providers, families, patients, and a multidisciplinary team,” says the AARC member. “Communication amongst this group drives the care we give and ensures we are all on the same page.”
Teamwork is essential to optimize care and treatment for the kids seen by the facility, and therapists have to be able to think on their feet.
“The new graduate should have the ability to assess the situation and analyze the information,” stresses White. “It’s not productive for the leader to hire someone who cannot think for themselves and comes running to the leader every time something goes wrong.”
She expects new grads to come to her with the top credential offered in the profession too. The RRT is required, and everyone who is hired must earn the NPS credential within six months of starting on the job as well.
“We are a neonatal/pediatric facility,” emphasizes the manager. “Our patients and families rely on us to be the experts.”