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Southern Arizona VA Health Care System (SAVAHCS) RN Transition to Practice (RNTTP)

One nurse residency program offered at the Southern Arizona VA Health Care System (SAVAHCS) in Tucson, Arizona is RNTTP. Residency programs ensure a supervised transition to autonomous and competent clinical practice. This is an employee-based program available to associate degree nurses.

Clinical settings provide a range of experiences in the application of nursing science and practice, provide exposure to Veterans of varying backgrounds and cultures, and foster graduated responsibility in carrying out professional functions. Veteran-centric continuity of care is stressed in transition of care from inpatient to outpatient settings. You will be an integral part of interdisciplinary teams to enhance clinical and leadership skills. Residents engage in a variety of didactic and academic learning opportunities, including onsite training in simulation and opportunities for learning through in-person and virtual courses. In addition, residents will participate in evidenced-based practice initiatives that provide skills necessary for future utilization of evidence-based practice in daily practice.

Mission Statement

The mission of the SAVAHCS' RNTTP program is to bridge nursing academic education and professional nursing practice. It is designed to support RN residents as they transition from an entry-level, advanced beginner nurse to a competent professional nurse. The overarching goal is safe, high quality care for Veterans. The mission serves to provide a program which will further develop effective decision-making skills related to clinical judgement and performance, strategies to incorporate research-based and other evidence into practice, clinical leadership skills at the point of patient care and to formulate an individual career plan that promotes a life-long commitment to professional nursing.


  • Transition from entry-level, advanced beginner nurse to competent professional nurse, levels defined by Benner’s “Novice to Expert” theory (1984)
  • Develop effective decision-making skills related to clinical judgment and performance
  • Provide clinical leadership at the point of patient care
  • Strengthen commitment to nursing as a professional career choice


The 12-month program will consist of three phases using the approximate timetables:

  • Phase I: (0-4 months) – Health Assessment & Documentation, Management of Care Delivery, Communication & EBP, and Avoidable Adverse Events
  • Phase II: (5-9 months) – Caring for the Postoperative Veteran, Professional Development, Mental Health, Cultural Competence, Culture of Safety, Avoidable Adverse Events, End of Life Care, Nursing Informatics, Incivility, The Art of Precepting, and Professional Development
  • Phase III: (10-12 months) – Legal Issues, HRO, Leadership, Ethics, Business of Healthcare

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

  • Clinical immersion with experiences in diverse units/areas
  • Interactive learning sessions that include:
    • Case Studies
    • Clinical narratives
    • Evidence Based Practice Projects
    • Grand Rounds
    • Guided discussion
    • Presentations
    • Role modeling
    • Simulation
    • Web-based learning

Eligibility Requirements

  • U.S. citizen
  • Current unrestricted RN license
  • Proficient in both spoken and written English
  • Meet VA vaccination requirements
  • Commitment to complete 1-year program


  • Full VA employee benefits
  • 11 paid holidays
  • Personal & sick leave accrued per pay period beginning on first day

Please submit resume to:

Program Faculty
Gloria Gdovin DNP, RN, NPD-BC
Evidence-based Practice (CH)
Program Director, Nurse Residency
ension 1-4418

Sona Siegel MSN, RN, CNE
Nurse Residency Coordinator
ension 1-4502


CCNE Accredited Program logo

The RN – Transition to Practice Residency Program at SAVAHCS is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (