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Learn what the PACT Act means for your VA benefits

Nurse Residency Programs

VA Connecticut is home to both RN and APRN residency programs. For entry to practice RNs, the facility offers the Post-Baccalaureate RN Residency Program and the RN-Transition to Practice Program. For new graduate APRNs, the facility offers a Nurse Practitioner Residency Program with two tracks: Mental Health and Primary Care. Additional information on each program and track can be found below.

Nurse Practitioner Residency Program

The VA Connecticut Healthcare System (VACTHS) Nurse Practitioner Residency Program is a twelve-month postgraduate training program with two tracks: Mental Health, and Primary Care. The program offers the opportunity to expand ones existing knowledge base and strengthen clinical skills as a Mental Health or Primary Care Nurse Practitioner.  The mission of the Nurse Practitioner Residency (NPR) Program is to enhance the competencies of new nurse practitioners and to provide a well-qualified workforce to increase access to excellent health services for Veterans.  We work to recruit, support, and retain excellent nurse practitioners who are passionate about providing quality care that is holistic and Veteran-centric.  

The VACTHS NP Residency program incorporates learning activities which are designed to complement independent learning activities and clinical experiences.  The program begins in July of each year and lasts for 12-months. This start-date allows sufficient time for candidates to graduate, take and pass national board exams, and receive state licenses.   Nurse Practitioner Residents collaborate with multiple services and clinical settings in mental health as a member of an interdisciplinary team. Together, they provide care for veterans using a patient centered approach, attend learning sessions, and work on a quality improvement project.

Candidates are considered eligible upon successful completion of a nationally accredited nurse practitioner program and who are applying for a first time APRN role.  Additionally, the following eligibility requirements include (1) must be a United States citizen, (2) proficient in English, (3) hold an unrestricted State Registered Nurse and Advanced Practice Nurse licenses, (4) certified for the program to which they are applying (Primary Care or Mental Health), (5) must successfully pass a national board exam from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) or American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) within 90 days of program start.  Certification must be in Adult Gerontology or Family Practice for the Primary Care track, or in Psychiatric Mental Health for the Mental Health track.   

All candidates must submit an application, cover letter, up-to-date resume, official school transcripts with a minimum grade point average 3.00, and three professional letters of recommendation.  

Interested candidates for the Mental Health track should contact Pat Giannelli, DNP, APRN, PMHCNS-BC, FNP-BC, ACNS-BC at patricia.giannelli@va.gov or via phone at 203-932-5711 ext. 3947.

Interested candidates for the Primary Care track should contact Faith Harrington, DNP, APRN, FNP-DC at Faith.Harrington@va.gov or via phone at 203-932-5711 ext. 7737.

Entry to Practice RN Residency Programs

RN Nurse Residency Programs:   Are you a new graduate registered nurse? VA Connecticut Health Care System is a great place to begin your career. We have two nurse residency programs for new graduate nurses: - Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency Program (PB-RNR) and – RN Transition-to-Practice (RNTTP)

Our nurse residency programs include didactic and precepted clinical experiences. These experiences are designed to provide the new graduate RN opportunities to effectively transition to competent professional nurses, with focus on developing effective decision-making skills, incorporating evidence into practice, supporting clinical leadership at point of care, and promoting life-long learning and resilience in nursing practice. You will practice collaboratively in an inter-professional model and gain an integrated perspective of nursing leadership and the VA healthcare system.

Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency Program (PB-RNR)

Are you a new RN ready to take your knowledge and skills to the next level? The VA Connecticut Registered Nurse Residency Program (PB-RNR) is a Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accredited RN Residency program designed to provide additional training and support to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) graduates.

Didactic and precepted clinical components provide a range of experiences in the application of nursing evidence- based clinical practice, and veteran centric care. The Post Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency Program is designed to bridge nursing academic education and professional nursing practice. As a successful graduate of the program, the participant will be an integral part of the interprofessional team and well positioned to initiate your life-long professional nursing career.

Program Structure: The VA Connecticut Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency program is designed to provide the new graduate RN opportunities to effectively transition to competent professional nurses who provide safe, quality care, with a focus on:

1) Developing effective decision-making skills related to clinical judgment and performance

2) Incorporating evidence into practice

3) Developing clinical leadership skills at point of care

4) Practicing collaboratively as members of the interprofessional healthcare team

5) Formulating an individual career plan that promotes a life-long commitment to professional learning.

As a nurse resident your experience will cover multiple clinical settings at the VA Connecticut Health Care System. The year is like a fellowship – you will earn significant work experience, training and skill development opportunities that are not typically available to someone starting out in an entry-level nursing position.
 

Post Baccalaureate Nurse Resident (PB-RNR) Trainees

  • Assigned a preceptor for 12 months with a shared assignment.
  • Clinical rotations on inpatient and outpatient units during Phase 1-3 of the program and selection of a nursing unit during Phase 4, the last 3 months of the residency program.
  • Weekly Didactic and Evidence-Based Practice Seminars and interactive sessions.
  • Matched with a professional mentor
  • Participate in comprehensive evidence-based practice program supported by VA Nurse Scientists with completion of an Evidence Based Practice Scholarly Project
  • Completion of required program surveys and evaluations for ongoing program improvement


Benefits of the Program:

  • Valuable experience developing and growing your RN skills and knowledge alongside expert colleagues
  • Annual stipend and benefits, no required night shift, weekends, or holidays!
  •  Structured mentoring opportunities
  • Enhance clinical and leadership skills in a variety of clinical settings
  •  Understand the continuum of care across the entire health care system
  • Veteran-centered practice environment to Care for Those Who Have Served Us

Note: Nurse residents are considered trainees and there is no commitment for continued employment after the completion of the year-long program. 

Interested Candidates should contact Jancee Pust-Marcone, MSN, RN, CCRN-K for additional information via e-mail at Jancee.Pust-Marcone@va.gov or via phone at 203-932-5711 ext. 5353.

RN Transition-to-Practice (RNTTP) Program

RN Transition to Practice is for any new graduate nurse with less than 1-year of practice experience who is hired into a position within VA Connecticut Health Care System. All RNs with less than 1-year of nursing experience who are hired into any care setting are automatically a part of the RNTTP program.

The RNTTP program is a 12-month program with weekly workshop days, debriefing, an evidence-based practice curriculum and more! 

Benefits of the program:

  • Structured mentoring and precepting experiences
  • Networking with your colleagues
  • Monthly workshop days
  • Clinical debrief
  • Evidence based practice curriculum, and more!

Applicant Requirements:

  • Meet all required qualifications as per job posting (open positions found on USA Jobs) 
  • Open to BSN or ADN nurses, graduates of a program accredited by the CCNE or ACEN
  • Less than 1-year of practice experience to qualify for RNTTP

Interested Candidates should contact Megan Collins, MSN, RN, CCRN for additional information via e-mail at Megan.Collins@va.gov or via phone at 203-932-5711 ext. 4797.

As for all of the VACT Residency Programs, we do hope that you will find your calling to care for Veterans within the VA Connecticut Health Care System!