Samaritan’s Pilot Emergency Nurse Residency Program sees Success with recent Graduate

Watertown, NY – On September 14, Sarah Wallace, RN, was the first to complete the Samaritan Medical Center Emergency Nurse Residency Program. 

“The main reason for my participation in the Emergency Nurse Residency Program stems from the love for emergency medicine I developed when I was a patient care assistant,” Sarah said. “The staff that is/was there helped to form my interest in Nursing and encouraged me to pursue the field. From providers to ancillary staff, I was able to learn something from someone each day that I was at work.”

In 2022, Samaritan’s nursing leadership created the Emergency Nurse Residency Program upon recognizing the dire need for front-line emergency nurses while solving the time gap of one year of experience required by New York State before a graduate nurse can work in emergency care.

Samaritan’s program offers a curriculum tailored to meet fundamental needs for well-rounded knowledge and a broad skill set of nurses who are passionate about critical care.

Picture here: Kim Smith, director of Nursing Critical Care at Samaritan, and Sarah Wallace, RN.

Sarah added, “I believe that this program is a great program to help new nurses explore emergency medicine while encompassing other departments. This aids in strengthening the community within Samaritan by having the residences go on rotations to each floor.”

New graduate nurses are navigated through Samaritan’s nursing recruitment team to the residency program, and they do not need to be licensed as a Registered Nurse before they apply.

“We are encouraged with Sarah’s graduation that we have developed a program that will help us train and retain RNs in the Emergency Department, this is our long-term goal,” said Jacqueline Dawe, vice president of patient care services and chief nursing officer, Samaritan Medical Center. “Currently we have another seven students at various stages in the program and we look forward to accepting new nurses as they apply. We also plan to expand our nursing residency in more areas. These programs work.”

While in the program, the new graduate nurses are exposed to all the areas and departments in the hospital, from the medical/surgical floors to labor and delivery, pediatrics, and behavioral health to the daily assignments and responsibilities in the emergency department. 

Graduate nurses, or nurses who will soon graduate, are encouraged to call our nursing recruitment team at 315-779-5236. New nurses to Samaritan may be eligible for a variety of sign-on bonuses and benefits including loan and relocation assistance.