Nursing and Midwifery Graduate Program

What would you like to know? 

The program – Purpose, Philosophy and Aims

The purpose of the graduate programs at Barwon Health is to provide a professional development program for Graduate Nurses and Graduate Midwives that supports and fosters professional independence for the beginning practitioner.

The program is based upon a model of skill and professional development that enables the graduate to move along a continuum toward independent practice. The role of the support staff is to guide clinical learning and skill acquisition, and to promote reflective practice in the clinical setting. Self-directed learning and continued professional development are expected throughout the program. A problem-solving approach to clinical decision making is fostered with the graduate adopting accountability and responsibility for their practice with the ability to recognise their individual limitations. Graduates will be provided with the opportunity for personal and professional development of interpersonal, clinical and leadership skills.

Aims of the program

  • To build upon the undergraduate program and facilitate the transition of the graduate from student to registered practitioner.
  • To integrate the graduate into the workplace by providing clinical support and educational experiences and activities to ensure the graduate understands their role in the patient journey and interdisciplinary team.
  • To assist the graduate to develop clinical competency to perform safely, confidently and professionally within his / her scope of practice.
  • To ensure the graduates practice within the Barwon Health values, code of conduct and accepted practice standards whilst adhering to all guidelines, policies and procedures.

General Information

In 2017, Barwon Health offered the following programs to nursing and midwifery graduates:

· Graduate Nurse Program
· Graduate Nurse / Midwife Program (combined program for double degree graduates only)
· Graduate Midwife Program 

In 2018 we hope to offer a specialised aged care graduate nurse program.

Graduates at Barwon Health are employed to work part-time for 12 months, with opportunities for further employment upon the conclusion of the graduate program. All graduates attend a five-day orientation program at the beginning of the graduate program. Our programs commence in mid-January and mid-February of each year. Barwon Health participates in the PMCV computer match process for all graduate nurse and midwife positions. The recruitment process commences at the start of June each year, with positions being allocated by PMCV in mid-October. 

In 2017 Barwon Health employed and supported a total of 74 graduates. Graduate program numbers are as follows:

· 68 graduate nurses
· Four combined nursing / midwifery graduates
· Two graduate midwives
· Graduate numbers vary from year to year and final numbers are confirmed during the PMCV computer match process. We expect that numbers in 2018 will be similar to previous years.

Clinical Rotations – Nursing

Nursing graduates can choose from a wide selection of clinical rotations at our acute site (University Hospital Geelong), sub-acute site (McKellar Centre), residential aged care facilities, community nursing and partner sites. Rotation preference forms are completed by applicants as part of the recruitment process and further discussed prior to commencing in the graduate nurse program. Nursing graduates complete two clinical rotations in any of the areas listed below:

  • Community nursing (Belmont, Corio or Newcomb)
  • Barwon Medical Imaging
  • Mental Health (adult mental health and aged mental health)
  • Emergency Department
  • Greta Volum Day Surgery Centre
  • Operating suite and recovery
  • Paediatrics
  • Cardiac Services
  • Oncology
  • General Practice (Corio Medical Centre)
  • Lorne Community Hospital
  • Medical units – includes general medical, respiratory, infectious diseases, stroke, renal, pain management, RAPU.
  • Surgical units – includes general surgical, orthopaedics, ENT, vascular, gynaecology, colorectal, urology.
  • Inpatient rehabilitation
  • Palliative care
  • Residential aged care (Wallace Lodge, Blakiston Lodge, Alan David Lodge)

Clinical Rotations – Midwifery and Combined Programs

Graduates participating in the combined nursing/midwifery program will spend six months within a specialist medical nursing unit and six months in maternity services. Graduates wishing to undertake a midwifery graduate program will spend the entire year within maternity services.

Graduate Midwife Program:
• Birth suites
• Postnatal / antenatal
• Pregnancy care clinic
• Maternity Day Assessment Unit (MDAU)

Combined Nursing/Midwifery Program:
• Birth Suites
• Postnatal
• Acute specialist medical

Please note that applications for midwifery and combined nursing/midwifery programs will only be taken from those completing undergraduate midwifery or midwifery/nursing courses. Barwon Health does not currently offer a graduate program for those completing post graduate midwifery studies. For those completing post graduate studies, please visit for employment opportunities.

Graduate Support & Education – all programs

During your graduate year at Barwon Health, you will receive support from a variety of people including your preceptors, clinical staff, managers, other graduates and of course the graduate team.

Both nursing and midwifery graduates are supported by a dedicated graduate team. The team consists of the Graduate Nurse Program Coordinator, Clinical Support Nurses and a Clinical Support Midwife. Graduates working across all sites and areas are supported by the graduate team. The graduate team is available to assist graduates in areas such as medication rounds, time management and prioritisation, performing clinical procedures, assisting with accessing resources or just for a general chat and reassurance. The graduate team can be contacted easily and are always happy to help graduates when needed.

As part of the transition from student to registered nurse/midwife, graduates are also provided with opportunities to learn outside of their clinical areas. This includes:

· Clinical skills workshops – workshops are offered to new graduates prior to commencing their graduate program. These sessions cover essential clinical skills such as venepuncture, care of a central venous access device, insertion of a urinary catheter and management of infusion pumps. Attendance at these sessions is not compulsory but we find that the majority of new graduates attend.
· Graduate Professional Development – held weekly at the acute site and videoconferenced to external sites. These sessions are informal and provide the opportunity to discuss any clinical issues and to disseminate information. These sessions are facilitated by the graduate team and guest speakers.
· Clinical Simulation – Sessions are held on a weekly basis and provide opportunities  for graduates to participate in a clinical simulation activity focusing on the deteriorating patient, escalation of care and clinical communication.
· Graduate study days – all graduates attend 6 paid study days held throughout the year. Topics cover a range of clinical and professional topics, clinical simulation and clinical case studies.
· Professional development and conference/seminar leave - graduates are also entitled to additional leave as per the EBA. Graduates are encouraged to attend study days, courses or workshops either held within Barwon Health or provided externally to enhance their own professional development.
· Clinical competencies, learning modules and mandatory training – Barwon Health provides staff with access to Grow, a learning management system accessible online. Graduates can complete various competencies and mandatory training online and then complete any required face-to-face training with either the graduate team, educators or assessors in their clinical areas.
· Graduate project – Graduates are required to complete a project which is presented to the graduate group and senior nursing staff on the last study day of the year. The project relates directly to the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards. Graduate nurses and midwives are given opportunities to become involved in quality and safety reviews and improvements at Barwon Health.
· Graduation ceremony – held at the end of the program; a great celebration at the end of a rewarding and sometimes challenging year.

Information Sessions for 2018 graduate programs

Information sessions for the 2018 programs (nursing, combined nursing/midwifery and midwifery) will be held on the following dates:

· Wednesday, 26 April @ 1pm
· Thursday, 4 May @ 9:30am
· Tuesday, 9h May @ 5pm 

Further dates will be confirmed shortly.

The sessions will run for approximately two hours and will cover all aspects of each of our programs including the recruitment and selection process. If you wish to attend, you will need to RSVP via and enter the event code j8g28. You will then be able to select the session you wish to attend. Please note hospital tours will not be provided as part of the information session.

Graduate Education – Midwifery and Combined Programs

Graduates undertaking the combined Nursing/Midwifery program and Graduate Midwife program will also attend the following study days, in addition to the six study days mentioned above:

  • Practical Obstetric Multi-Professional Training (PROMPT)
  • Foetal Surveillance Education Program
  • Breastfeeding study day / Extended Lactation Care

PMCV Computer Match

To apply for a position in any of our graduate programs at Barwon Health you must be eligible to participate in computer match. Visit the Postgraduate Medical Council of Victoria’s (PMCV) website to ensure you meet the eligibility criteria.

If you are eligible, you will need to apply/register to participate in the match. This must be done via the PMCV website. You will not be considered for positions at Barwon Health if you have not registered to participate in the match.

Please read all information on the PMCV website carefully. 

Contact us

If you require further information regarding any of our programs; please don’t hesitate to contact the graduate team. We are always available and happy to answer any questions that you may have. Please see contact details below:

Kelly-Ann Humphrys
Graduate Program Coordinator – Nursing and Midwifery programs
Phone: 03 4215 3264

Thursday, 23rd June @ 5pm

Traditional Owners

We, Barwon Health, acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land, the Wadawurrung people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to the Elders both past and present.