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Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency Program

The Montana VA Healthcare System is pleased to announce the Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Academic Affiliations has awarded our facility six positions for a Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency Program for a 2023-24 cohort.

This OAA training program is a comprehensive one-year (12 month/2080 hours) program during which time trainees have 100% protected time to master nursing skills and transition from the academic to professional environment in a supportive education-oriented environment.  During the residency you will earn significant work experience, as well as clinical and professional training and skill development opportunities that are not typically available to someone starting out in an entry-level nursing position. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education’s rigorous accreditation standards guide the development of the curriculum and the learning activities which are designed to help develop the essential competencies for a new graduate nurse. Throughout the program, there will be opportunities to immerse the new graduate nurse in environments and experiences that will help them develop into a professional competent nurse. A focus of our program will be development of competent generalist nurses comfortable working in a variety of settings.  Unique opportunities to experience nursing care in nontraditional environments and in rural care will be available to nurse residents selected for the program.

The Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency program is ideal for the new graduate nurse seeking a bridge from academic preparation to professional nursing. This unique opportunity to participate in the only federal nurse traineeship in Montana will likely accelerate the progression of essential competencies and enable highly motivated nurses to make meaningful contributions to the professional nursing while providing excellent and compassionate care to our nation’s heroes, our Veterans. We want to ensure supervised transition of the graduate nurses to autonomous and competent clinical practice within the Veteran-centric setting to care for our Veterans nationally.


To enhance the novice nurse’s professional practice through guided experiences and continuous development resulting in professional leadership ability and competent Veteran centered care provided at the point of care.

About the program

Our residency training consists of various precepted clinical rotations:

  • Primary care/Rural Care/Home Based Primary Care
  • Mental Health
  • Acute care and Critical Care
  • Specialty care & Telehealth
  • Leadership

We utilize multimodal approaches to facilitate learning that will assist the residents from a novice nurse to professionally competent nurse.

Valuable benefits include

  • Competitive pay-12-month stipend (expected 2023 rate $57,689)
  • 40-hour dayshift work week, (no nights, weekends or Holidays required)
  • 100% protected time (not part of staffing matrix on unit)
  • No commitment to the VA after residency program completed
  • Insurance – multiple options are available for medical
    • Temporary employees are not eligible for:  • Federal Medical Leave Act • Paid Parental Leave
  • Sick Leave: 1 hour for every 20 hours in pay status • Annual Leave: ▪ < 3 years of Federal Service: 1 hour for every 20 hours in pay status.

Note: Nurse residents in the Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency program are considered health professions trainees and there is no commitment required for continued employment after the completion of the year-long program. After successful completion of the residency, we do hope that you will find your calling to care for Veterans within the VA Montana Health Care System.

Applicant criteria

  • Be a graduate of baccalaureate nursing program accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education or the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing
  • Possess a current, full, active, and unrestricted registration as a graduate professional nurse in a state, commonwealth or territory of the United States, or the District of Columbia, prior to the start of the PB-RNR program. (Passed NCLEX approximately six weeks prior to the start of the residency program)
  • Be a citizen of the United States
  • Be serving in his or her first registered nurse role (Must not have had any paid RN work experience)
  • Be a recent nursing graduate within the past 12 months, with a GPA 3.0 or greater
  • A current BLS certification
  • Application:  App 10-2850D.pdf - resume, cover letter and 3 references need to be included with your application and sent to:

Education Office

3687 Veterans Drive
Fort Harrison, Montana 59636

406-417-9446 or 406-447-7297


Rolling Applications being Accepted. (Note: First consideration for February 2024 cohort will be applications submitted by Dec. 15th, 2023.)

Program Start Date: February 26th, 2024 

A letter of acceptance will include follow-up instructions regarding completion of the HR process, appointment with individual supervisors, and Nursing Orientation. 

Submit completed application to:

More information

For more information, contact the Post-Baccalaureate Registered Nurse Residency team at:

Michael Spinelli, MD - Designated Education Officer   

Joseph Dunn, MSN, MPA, RN, CCRN, NPD-BC - Program Director  

Roxanne Ore - Administrative Officer