Nursing remains a popular career choice for many college students and young adults. As you complete your degree, you may be wondering which area of nursing you want to specialize in. Becoming a travel nurse might be the career choice for excitement and innovation either temporarily while you consider other options or permanently if you love the work.
Enjoy Paid Travel
A travel nurse can go almost anywhere in the country in accepting temporary assignments. You can often choose from urban, suburban, or rural communities that will enable you to experience a completely new lifestyle as well as possibly different types of nursing work and patients. You might find that one of the travel assignments is what you want to do for life. But if not, you will gain valuable experience that can strengthen your skills in future temporary assignments or a permanent career choice. You can also visit parts of the country that you have not seen before or that you really enjoy. A nursing assignment will let you experience life in that area to decide if you want to relocate there permanently.
More Areas are Opening
Now that the pandemic is slowing down, travel nurses will likely be requested in hotspots where the pandemic remains viral. You might also be needed in places where patient care was reduced or put on hold due to COVID-19. Nursing needs seem poised to surge, and you will have your pick of assignments for various types of nursing and locations for assignments that are short or long. For example, if you have family members you would like to visit in a specific area, you might contact travel nursing companies in Kentucky to discuss registration with their service.
Wide Range of Diseases and Illnesses
A travel nurse often accepts assignments to learn about unfamiliar illnesses and diseases. For example, a nurse who originates from the northern part of the country might have experience treating patients with Lyme disease but may want to spend some time down South to learn more about how to nurse patients with Zika. Indigenous populations often struggle with high caseloads of conditions like substance abuse and diabetes. Whatever your particular interest in communities with specific medical needs, you can gain first-hand experience caring for those patients. These assignments will add new skills to your capabilities and to your resume. The more widespread experience you gain, the more employable you will become if and when you decide to settle down in a permanent position at some point.
Many nursing jobs provide professional development opportunities. But a travel nurse will encounter and work alongside a wide range of medical professionals and learning opportunities. Often, these encounters are based on immediate or emergency needs. The travel nurse might not originally have planned to do this type of nursing but will end choosing to accept an assignment where it is needed and end up loving it. Participating in local conferences or presentations in areas far from home is another option that may become available as online programs gradually transition to more live options.
Following the structure of a college education, the ability to travel around the country and learn new things in a hands-on setting can be exhilarating and fulfilling. Travel nurses can usually choose when to travel, where to go, and which assignments to accept. You might work in a clinic for two weeks, a school clinic for a month, and in a hospital ward for the rest of the year. The excitement of applying your nursing skills to a variety of positions and learning more as you do can be uplifting as well as satisfying. You can be a nurse on your own terms and experiment with various nursing jobs to find the work that you enjoy most.
Good Pay and Benefits
Travel nurses can earn higher-than-average nursing salaries depending on the type of assignments they accept. Like other nursing jobs, there are pay differentials, with nurses often earning more on evening or night shift as well as when working holidays. Overtime pay is typically offered when nurses are in demand. You also enjoy the convenience of choosing your own schedule and deciding which assignments to accept or reject. You can take a break anytime between assignments or schedule personal vacation time between each placement.
High Energy and Job Satisfaction
When you start taking temporary positions with travel nursing companies in Kentucky or elsewhere, you in a sense become your own boss. Traveling around preferred regions or around the country provides an outlet for high energy and nursing enthusiasm. You can also find a high degree of job satisfaction by doing the work you enjoy at the places you want to work. Being in control of your location, your schedule, and your workload puts you in the driver’s seat of your professional career as well as prepares you for a meaningful future. If you like to move around and keep busy with occasional time off for other interests, a travel nurse position might be the kind of work you are looking for.
The Back Door is Always Open
But if things don’t work out, you can stop being a travel nurse anytime. There are no long-term commitments or expectations. You can take time off whenever you need it to do other things like plan a wedding, build a house, or have a baby. Some full-time employed nurses become a travel nurse on their vacation time just to try something different or earn extra income. If you get sick or are offered a unique opportunity to do something else for a while, you can take time off without guilt. You can probably also return whenever you want to continue being a travel nurse.
If you are ready to try something new in your love of nursing, consider becoming a travel nurse on a temporary basis. The benefits are great, and the opportunities are limitless to learn new skills, meet new people, and enjoy a new and meaningful life.