As a nurse, the learning never stops. Whether it’s professional development or training on a new hospital procedure, nurses are always expanding their knowledge base. Many nurses pursue advanced degrees to further their careers. But often, travel nurses feel this is out of reach due to their frequent travel and other challenges. We’re here to tell you that it is entirely possible to go back to school while travel nursing.
Flexible scheduling. When you work as a travel nurse, you’re in charge of when and where you work. This allows you to plan around your school schedule and maximize your education efforts. For example, if you want to pack a number of classes into one semester, you can hold off on taking that next travel assignment until after finals. You could also choose an assignment in which you only work days to accommodate night classes, or vice versa. With travel nursing, the power is in your hands.
Online nursing programs. We understand that many nurses can’t simply stop working for the sake of school. Thankfully, there are many great online-only nursing degree programs that you can enroll in. These programs allow you to continue your education from anywhere on your own time, so they work perfectly for travel nurses.
Many online programs have clinical components where students are required to work a certain number of hours in the field. If you’re already working as a travel nurse, it’s possible you could fulfill those requirements during your normal shifts. If not, you’ll have to seek out your own clinical experience opportunities, but your school should be able to help you find something that works.
When choosing an online nursing program, make sure the program is accredited and has a good reputation. You can check for reviews online and ask about their job placement rate for nurses following graduation.
Tips for travel nurses going back to school. No matter how you choose to pursue your education, travel nursing doesn’t have to be a barrier to going back to school. In fact, you may find you actually have more time for school working as a travel nurse. That’s because you won’t have the same obligations and social pressures from family and friends back home asking you to neglect your school work to spend time with them instead.
To make your return to school even more successful, don’t overload your classes. If you’re going to continue to work while you study, it’s best to take one class at a time, at least until you get a feel for the workload. Also, try not to start school during the first week of your new assignment. Tackle one life change first, and then it will be easier to focus on the other.
Travel nursing can be an educational experience all on its own. But if you want to go back to school and get a new degree, there’s no reason you need to put your plans on hold. By following these tips, you can pursue your education, work as a travel nurse and not only survive the experience, but come out thriving.
We might not be a nursing school, but we can help you find the perfect travel nursing job to complement your education plans. Contact OneStaff Medical with any questions, or if you’re ready to dive in, start the application process today.