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Summer 2024 Nurse Student Externship Program

The George Washington University Hospital is currently accepting applications for the 2024 Summer Nurse Student Externship (Extern) Program.

Program Dates:

DATES: May 20, 2024- August 23, 2024

Our highly competitive, paid externship program, runs from late May through early August and is designed to enhance your academic and professional experience. Throughout the summer, the Student Nurse Extern will have hands on experience providing direct patient care under nursing supervision. Positions are offered in all specialty areas depending on availability.

Nurse Externs will collaborate with experienced RNs, who will function as a mentor, helping you develop your critical thinking skills you need to increase your confidence as a nursing professional. In addition, you will meet your learning needs and gain the best possible clinical experiences, a Nurse Educator will also provide support.

You will work a 36-40 hours per week and will have educational opportunities and shadow days incorporated into your schedule. Positive evaluations from the externship may also lead to an offer for a Graduate Nurse/Clinical Nurse position, will align with successful competition of your nursing program.


  • Currently enrolled in an accredited nursing program.
  • Have at least a 3.0 (out of 4.0) current, cumulative GPA.
  • Be available for full-time summer employment and rotating shifts (weekend/nights/holidays). 
  • BSN student who has completed their junior year clinicals (previous experience as a nursing assistant desired)
  • Two references from clinical faculty


  • Ability to perform direct patient care 
  • Knowledge of basic computer skills
  • Effective verbal, interpersonal, electronic and written communication skills
  • Ability to set priorities and work in a fast-paced environment. 


Primary Duties and Responsibilities

  • Assists with implementing the patient’s plan of care as directed by the Registered Nurse
  • Assists the Registered Nursing with implementation of the health teaching plan through the performance of routine health teaching
  • Assists with transport of patients, specimens, equipment and supplies as appropriate
  • Maintains patient privacy and confidentiality
  • Collects and documents pertinent patient information following hospital policy guidelines to include, but not limited to: reinforcement of patient teaching, completion of patient tasks delegated by the Registered Nurse, vital signs, height and weight, intake and output and patient care activities
  • Confers with the Registered Nurse in identifying patient needs, supporting and preparing transfer and discharge needs
  • Complies with established hospital personnel policies to include, but not limited to: attending orientation, mandatory training sessions and staff meetings
  • Contributes to the achievement of established department and hospital goals and objectives and adheres to department and hospital policies, procedures, quality standards and safety standards; complies with governmental and accreditation regulations
  • Demonstrates behavior consistent with GWUH/UHS mission, vision, values, goals, objectives and patient care philosophy 
  • Demonstrates effective communication and works effectively with all members of the healthcare team
  • Demonstrates the appropriate level of urgency during critical situations
  • Participates in multi-disciplinary quality and service improvement teams
  • Reports actual and potential problems concerning patients, visitors, employees and other departments to the Registered Nurse
  • Responds to questions from patients, significant others and visitors in a prompt, courteous and positive manner referring them to appropriate personnel as necessary
  • Reports information and findings to the nurse, and offering suggestions for revision of the plan of care as appropriate


  • Provides direct bedside care to patients as assigned, inclusive of but not limited to: 
  • Performs/assists with activities of daily living 
  • Assisting with ambulation, mobilization and rehabilitation
  • Performs basic procedures as per unit/hospital policy inclusive of but not limited to: 
  • Ostomy care 
  • Assist RN with urinary catheter insertion, removal and care
  • Perform 12 lead EKG
  • Peripheral IV insertion and removal/care and venipuncture
  • Collects specimens to include blood, urine, stool and sputum
  • Simple dressing changes and wound care 
  • Measure urine and drain/tube output
  • Point of Care testing
  • Incentive spirometry
  • Pulse oximetry
  • Applying and removing sequential compression devices
  • Safe storage of oxygen tanks and equipment
  • Assist with the application, maintenance and removal of traction, casts, splints and exercise equipment
  • Perform other duties as assigned
  • Provide effective communication and interpersonal skills
  • Maintain infection control
  • Provide safety and emergency procedures
  • Promote patient independence
  • Recognize and report abuse
  • Basic nursing skills: 
    • Measuring and recording vital signs
    • Measuring and recording height and weight
    • Observing and reporting pain
    • Recognizing abnormal; signs and symptoms of common diseases and conditions
    • Changing dressings under RNs supervision
    • Assisting with admitting, transferring, or discharging patients
    • Applying and removing elastic stockings
  • Personal skin care and dressing
  • Oral and denture care
  • Shampoo and hair care
  • Fingernail care
  • Toileting, perineal and ostomy care
  • Feeding and hydration, including proper feeing techniques and use of assistive devices in feeding
  • Mental health and social welfare care such as:
    • Responding appropriately to behaviors
    • Providing care, sensitive to religion, national origin, gender identity, and sexual orientation
    • Providing care to dying patients
  • Basic restorative services such as:
    • Transferring, ambulating, eating, and dressing changes
    • Range of motion exercises
    • Proper turning and positioning in bed and chair
    • Bowel and bladder training
    • Care and use of prosthetic devices
    • Changing dressings
  • Patient’s rights such as:
    • Providing privacy and maintaining confidentiality
    • Promoting the patient’s rights to make personal choices to accommodate patient needs
    • Providing assistance in resolving grievances and disputes
    • Providing needed assistance in getting to and participating in patient and family groups and activities
    • Maintaining care and security of patient’s personal possessions
    • Providing care which ensures that the patient is free from abuse, mistreatment, and neglect and the need to report any such instances to appropriate facility staff
    • Maintaining the patients environment and care to avoid the need for restraints
  • Monitoring the administration of oxygen equipment by observing settings, tubing and equipment
  • Care documentation in electronic health record 


RN Student Extern shall not practice independently but shall work under the supervision of an RN or other licensed health care professional.