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Work as a nurse while you study

Would you like to gain paid nursing experience while studying?

Bachelor of Nursing students now have an opportunity to develop their general nursing skills, after ANMF (Vic Branch) secured commitments from the Andrews Government prior to the last state election.

The Registered Undergraduate Students of Nursing (RUSON) model is a new pilot program to employ 2nd and 3rd year students to undertake general nursing care activities under the delegation and supervision of registered nurses.

It runs separately to your clinical placements and course to give you further opportunity to develop your skills and confidence.

Branch Secretary Lisa Fitzpatrick believes the program is a future-proof investment to ensure Victoria’s public health system has a well-educated and experienced workforce, which leads to better patient care.

‘Providing employment to undergraduate nursing students as part of the RUSON model is a win/win for students, health services and patients’, she says.

‘Students are employed in a role which complements their studies and, in turn, supports the provision of more timely care whilst also relieving workload pressure for the nursing team.’

The feedback of registered nurses to the initial pilot programs was overwhelmingly positive, with registered nurses saying RUSONs had made an ‘enormous difference to their workloads and that patients were receiving more timely care’.

RUSON was first piloted for 12 months in 2016 at Monash Health, Alfred Health and Eastern Health, with Northern Health and Peninsula Health following in 2017. Other health services are now coming on board.

Currently Ballarat Health Services is leading the way with the first regional pilot, consisting of East Grampians Health Service, Stawell Regional Health, Rural North West Health and Otway Health, plus four health services in the Loddon Mallee region.

Denielle Beardmore from Ballarat Health Services says that while the Grampians pilot has only been running for five weeks, they already received positive feedback from patients.

Ms Beardmore believes RUSON is an invaluable way to showcase what a regional/rural setting can offer and allows you to earn while you learn.

‘In regional or rural health you have everything in one ward; you have to be a good all-rounder, and RUSON gives you an opportunity to explore that’, she says.


Currently, the RUSON model is being offered by a select number of health services including: Monash Health, Alfred Health, Ballarat Health Services, Northern Health, Echuca Health Care and Peninsula Health. Positions are advertised through universities (contact your faculty).

ANMF is working with the Department of Health and Human Services to provide a more coordinated approach with health services and to expand the program to include midwifery.

Further information

The ANMF Graduate and Final Year Student Support Officer is here to assist you via