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    How to advance your career

    Now that I've worked on my unit for a few years, I'd like to become a clinical educator. How do I move into that role?

    Start by talking to other clinical educators in your hospital. Find out how they got the job, what they do, and what they like and don't like about it. Observe them teaching a class and note how effective they are. Attend classes on mentoring as well as the subject matter you'd like to teach so that you become an expert.

    Offer to mentor new nurses on your unit. Develop your teaching skills further by volunteering to conduct inservices and asking colleagues to complete a written evaluation to learn what you can do better. As time goes on, and your ability to teach improves, you'll be ready to apply for a clinical educator position. Once you start the job, keep current so you'll continue to be viewed as a clinical expert.

    DONNA OJANEN THOMAS, RN, MSN, a member of RN's editorial board, is director of the emergency department and rapid treatment unit at Primary Children's Medical Center in Salt Lake City.

    VALERIE G. A. GROSSMAN, RN, BSN, is Clinician III in diagnostic imaging at Rochester General Hospital in NY.

    Donna Ojanen Thomas, RN, MSN
    The author, a member of the RN editorial board, is director of the emergency department at Primary Children's Medical Center in ...