January 3, 2005

Travel Nurse Stories: Being Accepted as a New Traveler

Meet Nikkole Kantola, RN

I have been a travel nurse for six months.  I have always wanted to travel but didn’t have the right opportunity until recently.  I began traveling to challenge myself.  I felt as though I needed something different in my professional life.  I wanted to see how differently, good or bad, other hospitals functioned.  I wanted to validate all of my competencies and knowledge.

As a traveler, sometimes you are left feeling like an outsider.  On my first assignment in Virginia, I didn’t know what type of reception I would receive.  To my pleasant surprise, not only was I accepted as a fellow staff member but I was also made to feel as though I was a friend.  I was only there thirteen weeks and multiple people had warned me of never being able to make friends in such a short time period.  On the last day of my assignment, the staff surprised me with a going-away party.  They made homemade treats, signed a card with their appreciation, and even gave me gifts, including a pair of handmade earrings.  I cannot explain to you how much that touched my heart.  I left the assignment excited to meet my next group of friends.

TNAA Connected Me with Lifelong Friends

I have two favorite parts of traveling with Travel Nurse Across America.  First of all, the staff, especially my recruiter Donna, has been so helpful and considerate.  I absolutely love to receive gifts out of the blue from the company such as the nice bag that I received this past week.  I cannot express how much it means to me when Donna calls me just to “check on me.”  Secondly, I love the experiences of travel nursing.  I have gained much more knowledge and confidence in myself as a nurse.  I have made friendships that will last a lifetime.  I enjoy going to work each day!

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