Before becoming a nurse and even before beginning education, a lot of prospective nurses are unsure of the different types of nurses that they can train to become. A Travel Nurse is one option that offers a wealth of opportunities both in terms of life experience and flexibility.
As the name suggests, a Travel Nurse is someone that can work in different locations around the United States, and sometimes around the world. They can choose where they work, how long they want to work there for and also the speciality they work in. This type of nursing isn’t for everyone, but incentives of good pay, work completion bonuses, as well as the excitement of working in many different locations is certainly something that might tick all of your boxes. Let’s take a look at what it takes to become a Travel Nurse.
Travel Nursing Education
During your high school education it’s important to focus your attention particularly in math and science. If you think traveling further afield than the U.S. would interest you then it might also be worthwhile studying foreign languages. Once your high school education is complete and you’ve hopefully achieved the grades you were hoping for, it’s on to a local university or college to further your education. There are also nursing programs online that you can take in order to qualify as a Travel Nurse if you would prefer.
The first step after high school is to train under a program that is accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission. This can be via a hospital diploma plan (which provides minimum training to qualify), a two-year Associate’s Degree or the recommended four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree which is able to open up further opportunities down the road if you choose this option.
The degree qualification will mean you are able to take the nursing board exams, which will hopefully mean that you will qualify to practice nursing as your profession. This doesn’t mean that your education is complete however (in fact you will always be learning new things in nursing), as you will need at least one year of experience working as a nurse. For better opportunities to come your way as a Travel Nurse you might want to consider as much as two or three years practical experience in a hospital setting before seeking employment. One tip is to try and work in several areas of a hospital setting in order to learn more varied skills.
Skills to Learn
You’ll learn many skills during your education at nursing schools and training to become a Travel Nurse, but you’ll also need to be competent in areas that might not be covered in a classroom environment. This includes:
- Working in a team
- Being able to communicate well with others
- Be able to work in a number of different nursing settings
- Be flexible with where and when you work
Searching for a Job
Travel Nurses can be hired for short, long-term or permanent hire. The added benefit of this type of nursing over others is the ability to travel all over the country, or world if you so choose. Furthermore, Travel Nurses get to work in a variety of settings such as rehab centers, hospitals and correctional facilities.
As a Travel Nurse you can expect to earn upwards of $60k per year, but also benefit from travel expenses and accommodation while you are being employed. Further good news is that the demand for Travel Nurses is expected to grow over the coming years, so there should be plenty of opportunities for employment.
The demands on a nurse are understandably tough at times, but the rewards often outweigh this, especially for a travel nurse where there are always new environments and exciting locations to work. If Travel Nursing is a profession that ticks all your boxes then it’s definitely worth investigating further into training and education.