Traveler of the Year: Erin S!
Are you an avid Traveler of the Month reader? Love catching up with our Rock Stars as much as we do? Then you may have seen this Rock Star featured in March 2020. Every year, our Travelers of the Month are under consideration for our Traveler of the Year title. For 2021, we’re proud to honor Erin S. as our Traveler of the Year!
Let’s see what our Rock Star Travel Nurse has to say about her experience!
1. What are some of your most memorable moments as a travel nurse thus far?
Every assignment is an adventure. Even though I have stayed fairly close to home (within 2 hours drive one way), I get to experience new hospitals, new staff, new ways of doing things. I get to see what works and what doesn’t. Travelers can be a valuable asset to many companies in that they can make suggestions that they have seen in other hospitals. One of my favorite memories has to be my daughters and I visiting Coopers Rock State Forest. They have a beautiful park and overlook.
2. What has influenced you to continue traveling?
I am a single parent to 2 grown children (out on their own), 1 teenager, and a 3-year-old niece I am raising as my own – still at home. After my separation, I was struggling to pay the necessities. I am no longer stressed about finances and I am looking forward to purchasing my first home within the year.
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3. If you could offer one piece of advice to a first-time travel nurse what would it be?
Be confident in your knowledge and skill as a nurse. You will need to be able to function independently and learn quickly. Most places only give 1-2 days orientation. I wrote everything down. Have you found your voice? As a traveler, you must frequently speak up, be helpful, be open and welcoming to new partnerships. Have an understanding of what you want and make sure it is written in the contract. Read your contract thoroughly before signing. Research guaranteed hours and being cancelled by facility. Understand what you will be paid if you are cancelled or called off.
4. What has been the most surprising aspect of travel nursing?
I was surprised that I didn’t know about travel nursing sooner. Why didn’t anyone tell us this in nursing school? It is surprising that I get paid to work anywhere, any state that I want and have housing and expenses paid.
5. Where are some of the top cities on your travel nurse bucket list?
I have been wanting to go to Florida, so after my daughter graduates in May, I believe we will look for an assignment there. I also would love to go to
6. Of the places you’ve traveled, which location has been your favorite and why?
I have been traveling for 1 year. I have only had 2 assignments because I have extended at both places. I believe Morgantown, WV was my favorite. There is so much to do from hiking, boating, fishing, and of course WVU Football!! The facility I worked for was very nice and the staff were very welcoming.
7. What are some of the challenges you face as a travel nurse and how do you overcome?
One of the challenges I have faced working in WV is the winter weather and traveling in the mountains. I plan ahead and accordingly. I have a 4WD and I would stay close to the hospital. Both of the facilities I have worked at have also offered free sleeping arrangements.
8. Knowing what you know now about travel nursing, what would you tell your past self?
I would have told myself to start sooner. I wouldn’t have been in as much debt.
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9. How do you think travel nursing has impacted your personal relationships if at all?
I believe travel nursing has made me a better person. I am more open and easier to approach. I definitely have more friends. I have kept in touch with many I have met along the way. I think as a mom, it has made me more relaxed, and less uptight worrying about finances. And my kids and I are able to create memories and moments along the way.
10. Finally, what do you like best about working at Axis?
OMG, what don’t I like about AXIS? The staff at AXIS, I call them my team! Communication is top notch, always quick to respond. Contracts are tricky at first, but with clear communication, my team works hard to ensure I am taken care of. Issues, rarely occur, but when they do, they are handled professionally and quickly. I love working with AXIS.