Nurse? Or Travel Nurse?
You want to be a nurse, which means that your idea of a sexy Friday night outfit is scrubs and some squeaky rubber soled shoes, you’re totally cool with body fluids, and you’re willing to trade the personal satisfaction of saving lives for extended vacations in exotic locales. Right? Wrong. As it turns out, that isn’t necessarily true anymore, if you become a Travel Nurse. (Sorry, you still need to be cool with body fluids.)
Travel Nurse Defined
A Travel Nurse is just what it sounds like, except that instead of being contracted with a single hospital, you work with a recruitment agency or as an independent contractor to travel to multiple temporary positions at different hospitals. You can read up about it here. You still need about a year of clinical experience, and if your state is joined with the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLCA), you can work in any other compact state as long as the home state license is in good standing. Sweet.
And here’s the really cool part: Travel Nurses can often make more than their stationary sisters. The Wikipedia page cites a pay rate of $30-$50 or more, depending on where you’re serving. That kind of cheddar can get you a squeaky rubber shoe in a new color for every day of the week.
But where am I going to end up, you ask? Traveling is great and all, but not if they’re going to stick me in Fargo, North Dakota. Check out this adorable little infographic on the top Travel Nursing destinations, and the sites and amenities at each.
Sounds good, you say, I’ve got my bags packed, point me to ‘em. You can find travel nursing jobs with the placement agencies like Soliant Health that coordinate between the nurses and hospitals looking for placements. Also, definitely check out the Professional Associate of Travel Nursing , they can give you the skinny on the actual ins and outs of the job, plus some neat travel calculators, certification requirements and lists of other resources. Incidentally, they’re the ones who will be helping to make sure that your cooperating hospital plays nice in terms of working conditions and benefits.
If nothing else, a day off at the beach around the corner can help ease the blow of all the gross things that humans do when they’re sick.