California Healthline Daily Edition

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Many California Nursing Graduates Struggle To Find Jobs, Study Finds

Nearly half of all nursing graduates in California did not have a nursing job 18 months after graduating, according to a report by the California Institute for Nursing and Health Care, Payers & Providers reports.

CINHC surveyed nearly 1,500 nursing graduates last fall for the study.

Key Findings

The report found that 43% of nursing graduates were unable to find a job within 18 months after obtaining their license -- a rate similar to a 2010 survey that found that 42% of nursing school graduates were unable to secure a job for a prolonged period.

Of the nurses who said they could not find work:

  • 92% said they were told they did not have enough experience; and
  • 42% said they were told that a bachelor's degree was preferred or required.

Of the survey respondents with a nursing job, 70% said they found employment within the first six months searching.


Industry observers have said factors affecting the new nursing graduates' ability to find work include:

  • Resistance among new graduates to relocate to work in rural or suburban areas; and
  • Reluctance among older nurses to retire.

According to Payers & Providers, the study's findings raise concerns about recent efforts across the state to expand education capacity in nursing programs (Payers & Providers, 4/26).

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