My First 2 weeks as a Travel RN

I have officially finished my first two weeks as a travel nurse! I realize I am very much in the “honeymoon” phase of travel nursing but I am so happy to say I am loving it so far! It is just what my heart and career needed. I was SO nervous to be starting as a travel nurse and to be a part of float pool at that! However, all the units are set up similar and this hospital has very clear policy and procedures/orders so that is making the transition a lot easier. The staff has also be kind and welcoming on all the units I have been too.

Adventure To Virginia

The week before I left we realized my husband was going to need to stay in Greenville for at least a week before he could join me in Virginia because we needed him to tie up some loose ends (exciting announcement coming soon about that!) My sister called Friday night and offered to drive 500 miles to a place neither of us have been in a pandemic with me! I took her up on the offer to be my co-pilot and Sunday we made our way to Arlington, Virginia. She spent 5 days with me here and we were able to see some sites in Washington D.C., explore Arlington (what is open, it’s still on lock down here), and just have some fun quality sister time. I’m so thankful she was willing to come with me and I loved having her here!

World War II Memorial

National Monument

Lincoln Memorial

Social Distancing Happy Hour in Arlington


Orientation started out a little rough and definitely had me feeling nervous. I was so confused finding where I needed to go and ended up awkwardly sitting in the wrong class room. When I finally found my class, everyone was in scrubs, and I was in a suit. They also were all very experienced travelers and I was obviously new. Definitely an awkward situation. It seemed no one realized I was new- from management to HR to the EPIC trainer even though I was clear on my submission and interview I had never traveled before. I just tried to listen and absorb everything the best I could and it went fine!

The first day was a 3 hour computer class that was taught remote because of Covid-19. It usually was a full day class, but they fast tracked it due to Covid. The instructor was on speaker phone and able to show us things through a computer screen projection. Thankfully, the hospital uses EPIC, which I was use to using with my previous job. There are some things that are different, but generally it is the same. It was difficult because any time someone had a question we had to try to explain over the phone what they problem was. However, every one in the class had EPIC experience so we could also help each other navigate.

The next day I went to the hospital and did housekeeping type things- skill check offs, N-95 fit test, etc. I then shadowed a nurse on the floor for a few hours before leaving. The beginning was stressful because the schedule for the day was never very clear and we all had lots of questions as we tried to navigate the hospital. However, after I met my direct float pool nurse manager things became much smoother and more clear. I received my schedule for the first 6 weeks which was nice and she also gave me a full tour of the hospital.

Floor Orientation

Friday and Saturday night I was on the floor with another float nurse. She was so kind and helpful and took a little extra time with me since it was my first travel assignment. Learning new door codes, ways to contact the MD, how to know which MD to contact, etc are an obvious learning curve. However, nursing care generally does not change. I also was slow at most things just from not being familiar with omnicell (we used Pyxis), a different set up of the charting system, new supply room set ups, etc. but overall I felt like it really wasn’t all that different from my experience at my old hospital.

First Week Solo & Covid-19

After two days of orientation on the floor, I walked in and was assigned to the Covid Unit. It definitely was a little intimidating but I am happy to say it went well! I knew choosing to leave to travel when I did I would be helping on Covid units and honestly it was one of my reasons for starting when I did. I am thankful to say the hospital I am at is doing an amazing job at providing staff with the PPE we need to stay safe and care for our patients.

Family Arrives Saturday!

I have one more shift and I will officially be done with my third week of my assignment, which feels crazy! My husband, fur babies, and parents will be here Saturday and I am so excited to see them! We are so thankful to my parents for helping us move and I am so excited to see them. Covid-19 ruined our plans to visit this springs unfortunately. I have been staying at the Hilton in Arlington which has been a great experience, but I am so happy to have my family joining me. The Hilton, American Nurse Association, and American Express all partnered to give Covid-19 nurses a free place to stay. It has been wonderful to have a clean, comfortable, safe place to stay so close to the hospital while I learn how to navigate Covid-19 & travel nursing as well as an area I have never been before. Thank you!!!


1 thought on “My First 2 weeks as a Travel RN”

Melissa Weaver

Dad and I are very proud of you! We’re excited to see you on Saturday! ❤️

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