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Jumpstart Your Nursing Career with an Entry-Level Hospital Job

Jumpstart Your Nursing Career with an Entry-Level Hospital Job

Linda Childers / Monster Contributing Writer

Stepping Up to Health Advocacy

Working her way through Western Oregon University as a personal trainer, Keri Davis knew she wanted to work in a field where she could promote the importance of good health. After earning her degree in health education, she took up her mother’s suggestion to look into hospital employment.

To get her foot in the door, Davis accepted a job as an admissions representative at Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital in 2004. Candidates for these positions need a high school diploma, and previous medical experience is preferred.

Davis says the job was a crash course in interpersonal communications as she dealt with different patient personalities while admitting them to the hospital. “I saw every kind of disease and condition that exists,” Davis says.

When a position became available in the hospital’s health education department in late 2005, Davis applied, got the job and found her niche. She now works as a liaison with local elementary schools as part of the hospital’s Passport to Health and Safety program, which promotes good health practices among children.

Springboard to Nursing

After a divorce, Julia Patten moved with her two children to Yakima, Washington, where she landed an administrative assistant position for Yakima Valley Memorial’s nursing administration department.

In that job, Patten assists with writing policies and procedures for the hospital and serves as a representative on several hospital committees.

Becoming a hospital administrative assistant typically requires an associate’s degree or related experience working in a medical environment. Before landing her current admin job, Patten had worked as a unit secretary, monitor tech and administrative assistant at other hospitals. She had also taken a medical terminology class and was proficient in a variety of word-processing programs.

Admin salaries typically start at around $30,000, and the jobs come with an array of benefits, including tuition reimbursement for those who want to pursue healthcare careers.

That’s a perk Patten is taking advantage of to pursue her childhood dream of becoming a nurse. In fall 2006, Patten was slated to begin nursing school part-time while holding down her full-time admin job. “My colleagues have been very supportive, and my employer is helping me finance my courses,” she says.

As her own situation illustrates, “For someone with an interest in science or business, an entry-level career in healthcare can provide an excellent springboard,” Patten says.

Read the original article Entry-Level Healthcare Jobs on

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