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jeaniecz

Any nurses around here?

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Hi guys, 

 

I currently live in the Netherlands and am in the K-1 visa process with my  US fiancee. I am a hospital-based nurse with 13 years of experience. 

I am aware of the fact that I will not be able to work in the US until I will have obtained my green card and that I will need to get a nursing license. I will most probably seek work in DC/VA/MD area, so I started so do some googling on how the registration/licensing works. I would be grateful to anybody who has some experience with this and would be willing to give me a word of advice or answer a couple of questions. 

The authority I guess I will have to deal with is the CGFNS. Pardon me if I'm asking stupid questions, but I try to be prepared as much as I possibly can. 

 

My questions are:

1. When can I start my registration with CGFNS? Would it be okay to do this before I move to the USA? I am not sure which documents they will require me to submit and it would be much easier to get legislated copies of diplomas with apostille etc while I am still in Europe (I guess). 

 

2. I already have a few copies and translations of my diplomas, but those are almost 10 years old. Would those documents be sufficient or do I need to obtain new "fresh" copies?


"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, jeaniecz said:

Hi guys, 

 

I currently live in the Netherlands and am in the K-1 visa process with my  US fiancee. I am a hospital-based nurse with 13 years of experience. 

I am aware of the fact that I will not be able to work in the US until I will have obtained my green card and that I will need to get a nursing license. I will most probably seek work in DC/VA/MD area, so I started so do some googling on how the registration/licensing works. I would be grateful to anybody who has some experience with this and would be willing to give me a word of advice or answer a couple of questions. 

The authority I guess I will have to deal with is the CGFNS. Pardon me if I'm asking stupid questions, but I try to be prepared as much as I possibly can. 

 

My questions are:

1. When can I start my registration with CGFNS? Would it be okay to do this before I move to the USA? I am not sure which documents they will require me to submit and it would be much easier to get legislated copies of diplomas with apostille etc while I am still in Europe (I guess). 

 

2. I already have a few copies and translations of my diplomas, but those are almost 10 years old. Would those documents be sufficient or do I need to obtain new "fresh" copies?

Hi there!  Welcome.  I'm an RN here in Washington state.  

 

I wouldn't think you would need new copies of diplomas or academic transcripts, as there is no "updated" information on them.  But yes, I would definitely get the translations done while you are still in the Netherlands.

 

In terms of the specifics for getting licensed in the US, it really is all done on a state level, although the exam (NCLEX) is the same nationally.  You will want to check with your state's board of nursing as to how they go about evaluating academic equivalencies, and what the requirements are for English proficiency and qualifying to take the exam.  

 

DC/VA/MD may all have differing requirements, for example. 

 

There is still a nursing labor shortage in the United States, so once you're qualified, you shouldn't have any problems finding a job.  

 

Good luck, and keep us posted!

 

PS:  I had to google CGFNS.  I don't see why you couldn't start the ball rolling on that now.  I'm assuming that it is an independent service that the applicant pays for, and then submits the result to their state's board of nursing.  Current immigrant status would be of no consequence, since it is a credential equivalency evaluation only.

Edited by Jorgedig

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Posted (edited)

Hi Jorgedig, 

 

thank you for your reaction :)

If I may ask, when did you start your journey to a RN licence and how long did it take? 

 

I hope that if I start my application for the nursing licence before moving to the US (or before receiving my Green Card), it couldn't be interpreted as violating my immigration status. 

Edited by jeaniecz

"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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18 hours ago, jeaniecz said:

Hi Jorgedig, 

 

thank you for your reaction :)

If I may ask, when did you start your journey to a RN licence and how long did it take? 

 

I hope that if I start my application for the nursing licence before moving to the US (or before receiving my Green Card), it couldn't be interpreted as violating my immigration status. 

Hey again!  I am American, so received my nursing education and credentials here 20 years ago.

 

I don't see how pursuing a license could violate immigration status, as it would not be the same as working.

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Decide what state you want to live and work in.

 

Visit the nursing board website and look for international students, they should have all you need to know.

 

NCLEX is given around the world so you don't have to bein the USA to sit for it once you get approval.

 

I would get the ball rolling now and take care of your requirements while you are still in your home country.


ChickBoy

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Welcome!  Retired RN here...I have had the opportunity to work along side some very professional Nurses from the international community..........You have received good advice from @Jorgedig and @Falcon Cara.  Good luck in both your immigration journey and your career journey. 


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22 hours ago, Jorgedig said:

Hey again!  I am American, so received my nursing education and credentials here 20 years ago.

 

I don't see how pursuing a license could violate immigration status, as it would not be the same as working.

Ahh OK, I see. 

Well, to the possible violation...In preparations for my K-1 I encountered a lot of (small) issues which would never have occured to me to potentially become a problem, but it was brought to my attention by those assissting me in this process that some things might appear to be something different and would earn me either bad reputation or a denial right away. So I guess I started to be extra cautious about things. 

However, you're right, I confirmed with the CGFNS that I can start the certification process while I'm still in Europe. 

Thanks!


"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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12 hours ago, Falcon Cara said:

Decide what state you want to live and work in.

 

Visit the nursing board website and look for international students, they should have all you need to know.

 

NCLEX is given around the world so you don't have to bein the USA to sit for it once you get approval.

 

I would get the ball rolling now and take care of your requirements while you are still in your home country.

Thank you for your reaction. 

 

As to where am I going to work, hmmm, I don't know yet, I will live just outside Washington DC, so it will most probably be Virginia or DC. 

I was excited to read that NCLEX is given around the world but unfortunately, it's not available in the Netherlands :( But I have started gathering information so that I can submit my application for certification program ASAP! 

Thank you for the encouragement :)


"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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Posted (edited)

Sharing my experience as a foreign graduate nurse who came to the U.S on a K1 visa. This may not be the same exact process you will undergo but I hope this will help and guide you somehow. 🙂

 

Before you start your credential evaluation with CGFNS, check first the requirements of the Board of Nursing where you're planning to apply (it varies per state).

 

On 7/12/2019 at 6:59 PM, jeaniecz said:

1. When can I start my registration with CGFNS? Would it be okay to do this before I move to the USA? I am not sure which documents they will require me to submit and it would be much easier to get legislated copies of diplomas with apostille etc while I am still in Europe (I guess)

It would be better to start your application with CGFNS while you're in the Netherlands as it usually takes 3-4 months before they actually review and approve your credentials. With regards to documents, make your online account with CGFNS then order the required evaluation (check with the BON which one they require), then they will provide you forms and list of documents they need from you. Generally, they will give you a request form to be filled out by your university/college for your transcript of records in which they (not you) need to mail it directly to CGFNS. If you have a nursing license in the Netherlands, your local regulatory board needs to send your nursing license verification directly to them as well. Some other documents like a copy of your high school diploma can be uploaded online.  

 

Depending on the state you're applying for, some state will require you to passed International English Language Test and the result should be sent directly to CGFNS. You can do this at a later time after you have submitted your nursing credential with them. However, CGFNS will not issue the report unless you passed the IELTS test. I think state of Virginia and Maryland requires IELTS if your nursing program was not taught in English. 

 

On 7/14/2019 at 12:59 AM, jeaniecz said:

I hope that if I start my application for the nursing licence before moving to the US (or before receiving my Green Card), it couldn't be interpreted as violating my immigration status

I already have my U.S nursing license before I even came to the United States. I never encountered any issue during the whole immigration process. So, I think you should be good. 

 

Good luck on your new journey! 😃

Edited by RJW

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@RJW

Thank you for taking the time for such an elaborate answer :) 

I'm glad to know I can start working on this before I will immigrate to the US, because I expect this to be a lengthy process, so on top of the move, marriage, AOS and all other things I will need to take care of, which is why I want to make sure I have done as much as I could while I'm just sitting here waiting for my K-1. 

 

I have created an account with CGFNS and started to fill in my awill be ready to submit my application for the Certification Program by the end of the month.

 

I took (and passed) my TOEFL iBT in March this year and I indicated CGFNS as a recipient of my scores - this was at time when I still had no active order with the CGFNS, so I wonder if that is the problem. 

ETS tells me (I called them to ask) the scores have been sent to CGFNS.  But I am unable to enter the iBT Registration Number into the CGFNS CP application.....The ETS provided me with a Registration Number (16 digits) but the CGFNS application requires a different format of a registration number (a number starting with 8 zeros followed by a 2 or a 3). I contacted ETS about this and they told me they changed their numbering system recently but they expect any institute requiring those details would be already familiar with this change. Well, it seems to me that the CGFNS is not....I called them today and explained the problem but they insisted that I do not need to submit the TOEFL iBT Registration Number at the time of sending my application and that they will ask me for those details later. They weren't able to asnwer my question whether they are aware of the fact that their form requires an old-format Registration Number. 

 

So what am I to do? I don't understand how the iBT results will be delivered to CGFNS, because I expected that this would already have happened considering I asked the ETS to do so and it's been more than 3 months since my TOEFL. 

Any advice?

 


"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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@jeaniecz

 

Our situation is different as I applied for Credential Evaluation Professional Report instead of a Certification Program and took IELTS instead of TOEFL iBT. I’m not so sure how to answer you.

 

I can only suggest you e-mail CGFNS instead of calling them, provide them your TOEFL registration number and ask if they can update it since you have a problem doing so. I’ve read in some forum that one applicant was able to do so on her IELTS result but not on TOEFL though. If not, then just ask how to do it. There are times that they answer better in e-mail.

 

Another thing you can do is to go to allnurses.com forum where you can find vast information with regards to NCLEX, CGFNS application etc... Some nurses there might be able to answer your question.

 

You might also want to check out this link https://allnurses.com/cgfns-virginia-board-toefl-t679399/ .

 

Btw, may I ask why you applied for CP instead of CES?

 

Good luck! 🙂

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21 minutes ago, RJW said:

Btw, may I ask why you applied for CP instead of CES?

Hmmm, that's a good question. I did the research on the available services some months ago, so I don't remember exactly how I got to the conclusion to pick the CP and not the CES.  Now having consulted https://www.cgfns.org/select-your-service-by-state/ again for the US states I will look for work in (VA and Washington DC), I see that both of them require CES. Virginia also accepts CP.  So does this mean I should apply for CES instead of CP? I haven't submitted my application yet, I only filled in pretty much the whole form. 

 

I don't really know what the difference is between CP and CES. 

 

Now that I have been searchign further, I found these instructions for DC  https://dchealth.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/doh/publication/attachments/Instructions International Nurses 2019_0.pdf and this for Virginia https://www.dhp.virginia.gov/Boards/Nursing/ApplicantResources/ApplyforLicense/RegisteredNurse/.


"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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31 minutes ago, jeaniecz said:

Hmmm, that's a good question. I did the research on the available services some months ago, so I don't remember exactly how I got to the conclusion to pick the CP and not the CES.  Now having consulted https://www.cgfns.org/select-your-service-by-state/ again for the US states I will look for work in (VA and Washington DC), I see that both of them require CES. Virginia also accepts CP.  So does this mean I should apply for CES instead of CP? I haven't submitted my application yet, I only filled in pretty much the whole form. 

 

I don't really know what the difference is between CP and CES. 

 

Now that I have been searchign further, I found these instructions for DC  https://dchealth.dc.gov/sites/default/files/dc/sites/doh/publication/attachments/Instructions International Nurses 2019_0.pdf and this for Virginia https://www.dhp.virginia.gov/Boards/Nursing/ApplicantResources/ApplyforLicense/RegisteredNurse/.

Yep.  This is what myself and another poster were trying to say - each state's board of nursing can have very different requirements, so it is best to be specific (by state) as possible when researching.  The only thing the 50 states have in common as far as nursing is the actual NCLEX content.

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1 minute ago, Jorgedig said:

Yep.  This is what myself and another poster were trying to say - each state's board of nursing can have very different requirements, so it is best to be specific (by state) as possible when researching.  The only thing the 50 states have in common as far as nursing is the actual NCLEX content.

Thank you for taking time to clarify things for me. I must say that dealing with a country where there are (or might be) different laws in each state can be quite overwhelming for an immigrant-to-be, so I am very grateful that you guys are pointing me into the right direction! Not to mention I am still in the K-1 process, so I got a lot going on at the same time. 

 

I guess that during my initial research I focused on VA and because the CP is listed as the first option, I didn't realise getting CES might be the smarter thing to do. Well, if I understood things correctly, this means that once my CES is done and I will have passed the NCLEX, I would be able to get a licence in both VA and DC, right?


"Life is a journey." At this moment, it's taking me to the USA to the woman I love.

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3 minutes ago, jeaniecz said:

Thank you for taking time to clarify things for me. I must say that dealing with a country where there are (or might be) different laws in each state can be quite overwhelming for an immigrant-to-be, so I am very grateful that you guys are pointing me into the right direction! Not to mention I am still in the K-1 process, so I got a lot going on at the same time. 

 

I guess that during my initial research I focused on VA and because the CP is listed as the first option, I didn't realise getting CES might be the smarter thing to do. Well, if I understood things correctly, this means that once my CES is done and I will have passed the NCLEX, I would be able to get a licence in both VA and DC, right?

I have no idea specifically, just that each state mandates their own laws around professional licensure.  And as DC is not a state, I really wouldn't know how that works.  

 

Recommend you thoroughly research each individual nursing board's requirements while you wait on the K-1.

 

You'll find that it is not just nursing boards that vary by state - just about everything does, including traffic laws, pumping gasoline (in Oregon, only gas station attendants can pump gas), how much exposure to hazardous materials is safe, scope of practice for health care providers, laws about alcohol and marijuana, real estate laws, whether there is a state sales tax, etc.  EVERYTHING.

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