Q&A With MedSurg Travel Nurse Valerie

Get a quick snapshot of what travel nursing looks like in The Great Plains from nurse Valerie! She's been working on the Med Surg and Telemetry unit in Kansas for the past year, and shares more about her experience below.

What inspired you to pursue a career in travel nursing?

I just really liked the independence of being able to go wherever my heart took me, and being able to see the United States!

With travel nursing, I get to help facilities (and patients) that truly need the help
and learn new things within my profession simultaneously.


How do you balance work and life when you're constantly on the move?

As a newer traveler, I am still figuring that out. However, I take advantage of block scheduling when possible so that I can enjoy longer stretches of time off.  That's something I make sure to ask upon being submitted to a contract -- I always ask if block scheduling is an option.

Typically, I work 36 hours per week (if I'm not picking up overtime) so there's a good portion of down time. Opting for block scheduling helps me make better use of my time off!

What are some of the biggest challenges you face as a travel nurse, and how do you overcome them?

I would say the specific way that facilities do things.

I often spend the first few weeks learning the hospital's specific policies and where the necessary equipment is. Also, procedures vary greatly depending on where you are, so it's necessary to be  flexible and adaptable!

What advice do you have for someone who is considering a career in travel nursing?

Find a Facebook group. There are tons that are related to travel nursing and was able to see other people’s questions/answers.

By seeing posts in these groups, when it came time for me to find a contract. I already knew what questions to ask, what hours/shifts would be best for me, where to travel to (and which places to avoid, based on others' experiences there),  and how to find housing. The groups were so helpful when first starting out.

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What are some of the most rewarding experiences you've had as a travel nurse?

I really enjoy going and helping facilities that need help and being able to give quality care to the patients. It has been really nice to talk to patients, share my story, and increase my bond with them and ask them for recommendations in town for what to do, see, or eat.  


What do you binge watch during your days off?

I love to binge watch SWAT on Netflix. For people who aren't into watching shows or TV in general, I highly recommend the Harry Potter book series. 

About Valerie: Valerie is a Medical Surgical/Telemetry (MS/Tele) nurse. Valerie received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) in 2013 from Newman University in Wichita, Kansas. To date, she has a decade of nursing under her clinical belt. She has successfully completed three travel assignments with LeaderStat thus far, all of which have been in Kansas. Next, she hopes to visit the beautiful state of Colorado. Prior to joining LeaderStat, Valerie worked as a cancer research nurse at the Cancer Center of Kansas from 2020-2022. 


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