Embracing New Horizons: A Guide to Changing Your Travel Nurse Specialty


Michelle Ravanera | June 28th, 2024

The inherent appeal of travel nursing lies in its inherent flexibility. You get to explore new places while honing your skills in different healthcare settings. But what if, after a while, you find yourself drawn to a new area of practice? Don’t worry, travel nurses! Changing your specialty is absolutely achievable. Here, we’ll guide you through the process to ensure a smooth transition.

Step 1: Self-Discovery – Why the Change?

Before diving in, take a moment to reflect. What motivates your desire for a new specialty? Are you seeking a fresh challenge, a more specific patient population, or a better work-life balance? Identifying your “why” will help you choose the right path and stay motivated during the transition.

Step 2: Research, Research, Research!

Knowledge is power. Research the specialty you’re interested in. Understand the required skillsets, certifications (if applicable), and typical work environments. Explore online resources, talk to travel nurses in your desired specialty, and connect with recruiters who specialize in that area.

Step 3: Upskilling and Education

Depending on your chosen specialty, you might need additional education or certifications. Consider online courses, certificate programs, or even conferences to bridge any knowledge gaps. Remember, your travel nurse experience itself is valuable, and many programs offer continuing education credits for past experience.

Step 4: Leverage Your Network

Your travel nurse network can be a goldmine of information and support. Talk to recruiters who work with your desired specialty. They can advise you on job opportunities and specific requirements for travel nurses in that area. Additionally, connect with travel nurses already working in your target specialty – their insights into the daily grind can be invaluable.

Step 5: Be Open to “Floating”

If possible, discuss with your current facility the possibility of “floating” to units related to your new specialty. This provides practical experience and allows you to showcase your adaptability and willingness to learn.

Step 6: Update Your Resume and Profile

Highlight your relevant skills and experience in your resume and online profiles. Tailor your resume to each specific job application, showcasing your knowledge and qualifications related to the desired specialty.

Step 7: Patience and Persistence

Transitioning specialties takes time and effort. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t land your dream job right away. Be patient, persistent, and keep showcasing your commitment to your new path.


Remember, travel nursing thrives on your adaptability and growth mindset. Embrace the challenge, utilize the resources available, and don’t hesitate to ask for help.

By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to conquering a new specialty and expanding your horizons as a travel nurse!



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