Keeping Up with the Krew: Dan

By: Ben Phelps

When you think of your favorite past travel experiences, what comes to mind? Beautiful beaches? Fancy, glittering cities? Trails you’ve hiked or food you’ve eaten? Patients you’ve cared for?

Some of the greatest experiences happen where you least expect. For Dan, that’s exactly what happened when he took his contract in Auburn, Nebraska.

Like many Krucial Rapid Response Reservists, Dan found out about travel contracts with Krucial through a friend who had already worked for the organization. So, he got on the phone, called the recruitment line, and spoke with Jordan, who helped him land his contract. Then Dan hit the road and made his way to Nebraska. He knew he was heading for a smaller town, but it wasn’t until he got there that he realized how small.

“It’s a small town with one supermarket. If you get in your car, step on the gas, and count to 100, then you’re out of town,” said Dan.

The size of the town was not the only surprise to come.

“The people here are amazing,” he said. “The manager is amazing. The people are so welcoming.” Great people make a great difference, and Auburn is no exception. Dan started his contract in Auburn in September 2022. Since then, he’s loved his experience so much that he recently signed his fourth extension. “The people always make a difference. The building is the same, but the people inside make a difference, and the patients. The people are down to earth and just so nice.”

The staff at the facility even invited Dan to their annual Halloween party. “I dressed up as a cowboy!” Dan later was also the recipient of an award for all the help and hard work he provided, even though he wasn’t a permanent staff member.

Beyond the wonderful people in town, Dan grew to love many other things in the area. When Dan took the contract, he packed normal things: scrubs, shoes, a toothbrush, and also his fishing tackle. As a big fisher, the countryside of Nebraska provided an opportunity to get out on the water, relax, and see what he could catch. “I fish for fun, not for the specific fish,” he said. “There’s a fishing spot here; every time I go, I catch something.” Most of the time, he catches Bluegill, but his biggest catch was a massive 15-pound catfish.

For Dan, this small town ended up being an amazing introduction to travel contract work with Krucial. Of course, his story doesn’t stop there. Originally Dan entered nursing as a way to be more health-conscious, but as time goes on, it feels more like a calling. That call that so many nurses have felt is now guiding him through Nurse Practitioner school. “It felt like the logical next step. It will let me help more directly.”

Though a transition will likely happen following the completion of additional schooling, Dan has plenty of insights to share for aspiring travel nurses.

“Bring your passion, pack your bags, and don’t forget your fishing gear,” he said. Beyond that, Dan mentioned that choosing traveling contracts comes with the opportunity to make new friends across the nation every few months. Additionally, by traveling, you get the chance to see different management practices, new equipment, and new techniques. “If you travel for three months, it’s almost equivalent to nine months in one permanent location.”

As far as his experience with Krucial, Dan couldn’t be happier. What made things really easy was his recruiter, Jordan. “Jordan guided me through the process. He made sure I never felt alone.”

The kindness Dan shows his patients is clear. As he prepares to hit the road again soon to be closer to nurse practitioner school, he knows that wherever he goes, he will be able to make a huge difference. “I don’t know where my next road trip will be, but I know it will be important when I get there,” he said. A regular healthcare nomad, making a difference in underserved communities. We are proud to call Dan a member of the Krucial family.

Do you know an incredible nurse like Dan? Nominate them and reach out to us at social_media@krucialrr.org

“The people always make a difference. The building is the same, but the people inside make a difference, and the patients. The people are down to earth and just so nice.”

“Bring your passion, pack your bags, and don’t forget your fishing gear."

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