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).

Sylvia Estrada
The majority of our minority students graduate from a ADN program. This is how they can start off to get their nursing education. Once they graduate they struggle to find jobs in hospitals because the majority of them are looking for BSN prepared nurses so that they can meet their quota for Magnet certification. This means these institutions are giving lip service to increasing their diversity in their nursing workforce. Implications: 1. Encourage minority students to get into a BSN prepared nursing program to help reduce the burden of getting hired after graduating. 2.Encourage those ADN prepared nurses to go back to school for advanced nursing education.

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