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How to Balance Travel Nursing & Graduate Studies

September 24, 2015

At first glance, it may seem like graduate school and travel nursing are incompatible, however, this couldn't be further from the truth. If you plan well and manage your time properly, you can succeed at both graduate studies and travel nursing assignments. In fact, the income you earn from travel nursing can even help you finance your graduate program without student loans.

Below are some tips to help you balance these two important commitments effectively.

1. Schedule travel nursing assignments carefully

Before you schedule your travel nursing assignments, review your graduate program's schedule carefully so that you can be sure to avoid overlapping commitments. If you need to attend classes in-person, select a graduate program and travel nursing assignment in the same region.

2. Focus on higher paying assignments

As you consider different travel nursing assignments, look for those that pay a higher wage and require a smaller time commitment. This will ensure that you gain the financial support you need to fund your graduate studies while still retaining enough free time to focus on the course material and complete all of your assignments.

3. Research libraries in advance

Before you leave for your travel nursing assignment, find out how to get to the local library from your residence. If you want to use the library's resources, such as computers or private study rooms, find out whether you will need a library card. If you prefer to study at home instead, make sure you have the equipment you will need to do so.

4. Make use of your downtime

When you are away from home as a travel nurse, you won't have as many social commitments as you would have at home. Make the most of this downtime by using it to study, complete assignments or complete online instructional sessions. 

5. Network with other medical professionals

While you are on assignment, you will meet a number of other professionals in the medical field. Use this opportunity to build lasting connections with these professionals that will help you as you continue to build your career after graduate school.

6. Use your assignment to your advantage

In some cases, you may be able to choose an assignment that focuses on the same general subject as your graduate program. If this is a possibility for you, take advantage of it. Use what you learn in graduate school to help you on assignment and vice versa.

Both graduate school and travel nursing require a significant amount of focus and effort. However, with the tips above, you can handle both of these commitments successfully.

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