What is Valley View’s Nurse Residency Program and what does it have to offer?

July 2022 NRP Graduates

Valley View’s Nurse Residency Program (NRP) in Glenwood Springs, Colorado is an evidence-based, transition to practice program designed for the recent graduate of an RN program or an RN with less than one year of experience. The goal of the program is to support nurses through the transition into a professional nursing career. The program has a holistic approach, focusing on the elements of a critical thinking and competency, as well as wellness and self-care. Our program includes collaboration with a department specific preceptors, clinical nurse facilitators, and provides support and resources to facilitate educational and professional growth.

In 2008, Valley View recognized the need for the new nursing graduate to have a supportive and structured transition from nursing school to being a practicing nurse. Since 2008, over 155 have gone through our nurse residency program in Glenwood Springs. In order to meet the needs of our nurse residents, Valley View achieved accreditation with distinction as a Practice Transition Program (PTAP) by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation in 2018. Valley View will reaccredit PTAP in 2025.

During the new graduates first year, nurse residents work together to complete evidence-based practice projects (EBPs) focused on quality improvement. These projects’ goal is to contribute to patient safety and improving the patient experience. Nurse residents present their EBP projects to peers and hospital leadership. The EBP project is scaffolded and embedded in the yearlong courses. Each nurse resident will be assigned a mentor in addition to their facilitator to ensure support and success.

What our program offers

  • Valley View NRP is a 12-month formal, structured program that includes a robust orientation to our hospital and its culture, as well as clinical orientation during the first two weeks of employment. Nurse residents will start in their departments on the third week of employment and meet with each other for monthly classes throughout the rest of the year to discuss important topics with the new graduate nurse. Our interdisciplinary team is dedicated to the nurse resident success and serves as guest speakers throughout the year.
  • The NRP offers an evidence-based curriculum, classroom instruction, clinical lab and simulation activities, a precepted clinical experience, and mentorship. You’ll have many opportunities to put your knowledge into practice.
  • Our NRP is dedicated to growing our own, and nurse residents are valued as the future of the organization. Preceptors, mentors and leadership support you as you transition to your professional nursing position.
  • The NRP supports the whole nurse. Classes dive into topics such as professional development, peer support and building confidence. Each cohort builds strong bonds and participates in official and unofficial service projects and hiking, biking or river trips. Classes also focus on self-care and work-life balance.

  • Valley View NRP is accredited as a Practice Transition Accredited Program (PTAP) with Distinction by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

    PTAP Accreditation in 2018 and 2021

  • Candidates must have graduated (or anticipate graduation) from an accredited nursing program (ADN or BSN) within the past 12 months of a cohort start date.

    Employment is contingent upon passing NCLEX and obtaining a Colorado or multistate compact registered nurse license. This is not required to apply, but is requested by the start of the program.

    Nurse residents must work full-time positions throughout the program and be prepared and able to work weekends, holidays and twelve hour days/nights per department requirements.

    Nurse residents commit to the yearlong program and a two-year commitment to Valley View which begins when the nurse resident has completed clinical department orientation.

  • Attend, actively participate and complete all activities in the program including attending classes, projects, online courses, small groups, labs, simulations career planning, and evidenced-based projects (EBPs). All of the program activities take place during paid hours.

    Residency seminar topics

    As a nurse resident, you may have the opportunity to participate in the following seminars:

    – Interdisciplinary communication and complex patient management
    – Care of the SI and behavioral health patient
    – Review of nursing skills including urinary catheters, pain management, chest tubes, nasogastric tubes, IV therapy, assessment skills, blood transfusions, oxygen delivery devices, rhythm interpretation, skin and wound care and pediatric care
    – Trauma informed care
    – Medication safety
    – Sepsis
    – Code management and mock code simulations
    – Stress management
    – Drug diversion
    – Time management, prioritizing, and delegation
    – Stress, sleep and compassion fatigue
    – Nurse incivility
    – Crucial conversations

  • Applying for a Position

    Valley View’s NRP has two cohorts annually; typically cohorts start in late January/early February and July.

    Candidates will apply through Valley View’s career section. Departments that have open positions will be available to view when accessing the application. Each department director will review the candidates’ applications, cover letters and resumes and extend invitations to interview. The nurse recruiter or NRP coordinator will call to schedule these interviews. The NRP director, NRP coordinator, the nursing director and/or manager of a specified department, nursing educator, preceptor, and nursing staff members may be present during the interview. Occasionally, if the area in which you chose is full, you may be offered to interview for a position for which you did not apply. This is because other managers are also interested in you.

    If you are selected for the upcoming NRP at Valley View, you will receive a phone call from either the NRP coordinator or the director of the department that is offering the position. If you were not chosen to be a nurse resident at Valley View, the NRP coordinator will reach out with a phone call.

    Once you accept the position, you will work with human resources to complete any outstanding application requirements and begin the onboarding process. If you are a current employee, you will still be required to complete orientation with your cohort.

  • Valley View Hospital – Acute Care, Family Birth Place, Critical Care, Emergency Department/Urgent Care Center, Surgical Services (Day Surgery, Operating Room, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit), Endoscopy

    Ambulatory Care Track – Internal Medicine, Spine Center, Lung Center, Heart and Vascular Center, Roaring Fork Family Practice, Pediatric Partners, Women’s Health, Eagle Clinic, Valley Ortho, Gastroenterology Center, and Rocky Mountain Urology Center.

    Calaway Young Cancer Center Oncology

  • More information to come.

    https://www.vvh.org/careers/

  • – Medical, Dental, Vision for you and eligible dependents
    – Flexible Spending Accounts (Health Care FSA and Dependent Care FSA)
    – Life and Disability Insurance
    – Generous Paid Time Off Accrual
    – Tuition Assistance
    – Retirement Savings Plans (401a and 403b)
    – Employee Assistance Program
    – Employee Discount on Valley View Medical Services
    – Corporate Ski Passes
    – Others: Discounted RFTA passes, discounted gym memberships, free car seat for new Valley View babies born or adopted by Valley View Moms and Dads

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


How long is the program?
Our nurse residency program in Glenwood Springs is 12 months from hospital orientation to graduation.

What are the requirements?
● Seven orientation classes, then monthly, four hour classes the rest of the year
● Complete an evidence-based project that will be beneficial in your home department with guidance and support from the education department

Is there a commitment?
Yes, two years commitment (begins after orientation is completed) to Valley View, with one year being in the department that you are hired in.

Are you accredited? What does that mean to me?
● Yes, we are PTAP accredited with distinction from the American Nurses Credentialing Center
● Being accredited means we have met certain standards for our NRP to promote excellence in nursing and healthcare.

What are the benefits of being in a Nurse Residency Program (NRP)?
● Support from the NRP director, the NRP coordinator, and your NRP facilitator in your department to help with your transition into the nursing profession
● Peer support within your cohort through the highs and lows of being a new nurse.

When do the cohorts start and when should I apply?
● We have two cohorts; cohorts start in late January/early February and July annually
● The posting is usually up on Valley View’s website about two months prior to the start

Do I need to have my BSN?
No, but we do encourage you to pursue your BSN within four years of starting at Valley View. We offer tuition reimbursement and scholarships.

What department will I be placed in?
You have the opportunity to pick your top two choices from the departments that are hiring. After the interview process, the department leaders or human resources will reach out to you with any offers.

Do I have to work night shifts? Weekends? Holidays?
This is all dependent on the department you are hired into. More details will be given at your interview and if an offer is given.

What is taught in the orientation classes?
The orientation reviews many aspects of nursing at Valley View. For example, patient safety, ethics, HIPAA, risk management, provider communication, and behavioral health. We also do some hands-on practice with our IV pumps, central lines, code cart, and rapid blood infuser to name a few. Simulations are a large part of our curriculum in addition to hands-on learning.

What is the evidence-based project?
You present your evidence-based project (EBP) at the completion of the nurse residency program. This project is scaffolded and built into your monthly meetings. The NRP and NRP facilitators support the process and start providing guidance around month three.

What kind of support will I have in the department?
You will have your preceptor and your RN facilitator. You will meet one on one with each of them weekly for two weeks, then every other week until week eight, then monthly until orientation is over. This check-in allows the preceptor and facilitator to check on your progress and help with any struggles.

Will I have an opportunity to train in any other area?
It’s best to focus on the department where you were hired for the first year. After that first year, you can look at the job postings and discuss cross-training with your director and/or manager.

What happens if I am unable to fulfill my two-year commitment or the department I am hired for ends up not being a good fit?
● If you are unable to fulfill your two-year commitment, you will need to meet with human resources for the specifics of the agreement.
● If it’s just not a good fit, we will meet and discuss what options there are with the NRP director, NRP coordinator, and the department director/manager.

I have six months of experience at a bigger hospital, why do I have to go through the nurse residency program?
We still want to offer that support that the NRP provides until you have at least one year of experience. Some benefits of attending the sessions are the group support you receive from your fellow residents and the classes providing a foundation to help support you as a nurse at Valley View.

What will my schedule be during the Residency?
Once orientation to the department is completed, you will move to the regularly scheduled pattern of shifts for your position. Time dedicated to the NRP activities will be accommodated in your schedule. You will meet once a month with your residency cohort.

What will I be paid while in the Residency Program?
Your normal hourly wage.

Is it possible to take time off during the residency?
Yes, paid leave and requests for time off will be the same as other new employees

Do I have to participate in the NRP to become a nurse at Valley View?
Yes, all new graduates will be enrolled in the NRP.

I have more than one year of RN experience – do I still qualify for the nurse residency program?
Unfortunately, you would not qualify. This program is only for new graduate RN’s with less than twelve months of experience. However there are many internal and external opportunities for professional development for all of our nurses.

What are the benefits of being in a nurse residency program in Glenwood Springs, Colorado?
Glenwood Springs, Colorado is conveniently located in the heart of the Rocky Mountains. With easy access to the outdoors, skiing, hiking, biking, and more, our nurse residents have the opportunity to explore all that Colorado has to offer.

For more questions please email Aubrey Glenn (Aubrey.Glenn@vvh.org) or call 970-384-7349