Travel Nurse Stories

View All Nurse Stories

“Open Road Mountain Chick”

Bringing Along Family/Friends/Partners, Career Advancement, Dating on the Road, Outdoors Across the U.S., Taking (Lots of) Time Off, Traveling With Pets New Mexico

Today is the holiest of days for ER Travel Nurse Morgan… the opening day of ski season. She spent last winter on the “awesome” slopes of Taos, New Mexico but is looking to explore new spots this year. With nearly everything she owns selling like hotcakes on Craigslist and eBay (she’s holding on to almost nothing but her mountain bike and skis) Morgan is feeling free and ready to hit the highway with her boyfriend, Mike, and Burnese mountain dog, Turtle, “on a total adventure mission.”

Morgan has spent a good part of her life in the Southwest. A college soccer scholarship brought her out to Durango, Colorado from Kansas and she made a home in that sunny corner of the world. Although her love of the mountains was satisfied by this outdoor mecca, her wanderlust was not. Travel nursing was the answer and she has bounced around the country from DC to Utah, to New Mexico and isn’t planning on stopping anytime soon. She is currently living in Santa Fe, her “second home” which she says is “kind of a funny thing because when I started the travel gig about three years ago I absolutely refused to go to New Mexico…and now I keep coming back.” It was her recruiter, Rachael, who convinced her that she would enjoy the Land of Enchantment and Morgan is thankful she took her advice. “Thank god Rachael happened,” she says with a sigh of relief. “Not just Rachael but everyone at Aya.”

Lofty peaks, an active lifestyle and the advice of her recruiter/“best friend” she “has never met” aren’t the only things that keep luring Morgan back to the area. She snagged Mike in Santa Fe on her very first contract, but at the time Morgan wasn’t quite ready to stop exploring and fitting new “pieces of the puzzle” of life together just yet. She was “psyched” to check out the East Coast, and so she did, accepting an assignment near her best friend in DC. She lived on Capitol Hill and loved to run by the Supreme Court en route to the Jefferson Memorial to chat up members of the press and see what SCOTUS was ruling on because “it was a totally different experience.” With our nation’s capitol checked off her bucket list Morgan needed to get her fix of her beloved mountains, and so she headed to what became perhaps her favorite assignment in Salt Lake City. Traversing the rugged paths above the city she was astonished by little surprises like the seashells she stumbled across on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail and grand wonders like “the lushness of Utah, which “can be really, really, really green in the springtime.”

Morgan is now perfectly poised for more daring exploits. Now that she has been reunited with Mike in the Southwest they plan to purchase a camper trailer and roam for the next few years, with Morgan seeking adventure not only on the open road but in her professional life as well. This self-described “adrenaline junkie” is an ER nurse through and through. She thrives on the novelty the ER provides and travel nursing allows her to not only live her passion of practicing emergency medicine but to take the time off she needs to keep practicing well. She says the “cool thing about every ER” is that the “goal is to work as a team to save somebody’s life and you really build great connections through that.” Despite her enthusiasm for the work, enduring the worst moments of her patient’s lives day after day “can be very sad and traumatizing and being able to travel and have some time off in between assignments to get to your next destination helps you keep your smile genuine.”