Martinsburg VA Medical Center
Nursing Career Fair a Huge Success
On Aug. 22, there was a line down the medical center hallway with candidates eager to attend the Martinsburg VA Medical Center (VAMC) Nursing Career Fair and learn more about what it means to be a VA nurse. By 9:30 a.m., thirty minutes before the event was supposed to start, 24 people were anxiously awaiting the door to open. They were greeted by Sandy Sullivan, associate director, patient care services – chief nurse executive (AD-PCS).
Overall, 125 people attended the event, including 31 Registered Nurses (RNs), 22 Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) and 67 Nursing Assistants (NAs).
“The fact that our turnout was so large really gives us a good return on investment, especially considering we didn’t do any paid advertisements,” said Sullivan. “Almost all the people I talked to said they heard about the event from staff at the Martinsburg VAMC who shared and encouraged their nursing friends to attend.”
Each unit and service at the medical center set up tables with nursing-specific fact sheets and information that highlighted their service. Human Resources and Employee Education were also in attendance to discuss the application process and educational opportunities for nurses. Nursing leaders gave tours of the facility and specific units to highlight the unique home-like settings.
“Giving tours was an important goal for us because many of the potential nurses had never been to our facility before,” said Tami Lloyd, nurse recruiter. “They were all impressed with how clean and organized our units are, the technology available and the team-like atmosphere.”
The career fair also provided an opportunity for hiring managers to explain some of the features on USAjobs.gov.
“We recognize that USAjobs.gov can be a potential barrier to new applicants who have never navigated it before,” said Nate Madrid, nurse manager - ambulatory care. “We were able to give them tips and answer questions about the hiring process.”
For instance, many NAs didn’t realize they could also qualify for Health Technician or Medical Support Assistant positions.
Not only were there tables set up for nursing units and medical services but there was also a Pathways to Excellence and Daisy Award booth set up for general nursing service information.
“Many of the nurses were impressed with our practice standards and the American Nurses Credentialing Center Pathways designation,” said Amy Farmer, executive assistant to AD-PCS. “We really wanted to show them that we care about rewarding our nurses and are passionate about nursing standards of excellence.”
Representatives from the medical center’s Long-Term Care units said they were impressed with the overall turnout of the event.
“We enjoyed speaking to all of the potential new nurses and nursing assistants today,” said Amy Hauser, nurse manager – 5C Community Living Center. “Not only were we impressed with the number of qualified applicants but they were also impressed with our patient ratios and how our long-term care units have a home-like environment.”
Due to the overwhelmingly positive feedback from potential hires and current staff, the nursing career fair is something the facility wants to do again. It was a great opportunity to open our doors to the nursing community, showcase our facility and encourage nurses to come serve the greatest patients in the world – our Veterans.
If you are a RN, LPN or NA and are interested in a nursing career with the Martinsburg VA Medical Center, please call our Nurse Recruitment team at 304-263-0811, ext. 3708 or visit usajobs.gov.