Because of its iconic New England fall colors and spooky city of Salem, October’s State Spotlight takes us to magnificent Massachusetts. The Bay State is a lovely choice for Travel Nurses, with some of the best facilities in the nation, tons of opportunity for professional development, and an abundance of things to do on your day off. Read on to find out why the state known for its famous Boston Tea Party might just be your cup of tea!
Travel Nursing in Massachusetts
Massachusetts is a fabulous state for Travel Nurses because of its many state-of-the-art, high-ranking facilities. Because of this, The Bay State consistently has oodles of great, lucrative job opportunities for Travelers where they will learn new skills and sharpen existing ones. Massachusetts also offers big-city excitement alongside quaint communities and a gorgeous coastline, to boot.
Massachusetts is home to 100+ hospitals — 10 of which are ranked based on high standards from U.S. News & World Report. That includes Boston’s Massachusetts General Hospital, which U.S. News & World Report ranked #4 on the 2017/2018 Honor Roll of Best Hospitals and #1 in the state of Massachusetts. Boston Children’s Hospital, also ranked #1 on the 2017/2018 Best Children’s Hospitals Honor Roll. Rounding out the top five overall hospitals in Massachusetts are: Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Springfield’s Bay State Medical Center, Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, and Worcester’s UMass Memorial Medical Center.
In 2017, U.S. News & World Report ranked Massachusetts the #1 overall state on their first-ever “Best States” list, based on criteria including economy, education, government, health care, crime & corrections, infrastructure, and opportunity. The report also ranked Massachusetts #2 among the top states for healthcare, #1 for education, and #5 for economy.
As for licensing, Massachusetts is not a walk-through state, nor is it currently at the time of this writing a compact state, but it is a NURSYS state! As for Massachusetts’ compact status, stay tuned as the NLC to eNLC transition continues, because it is one of a handful of states that hopes to pass legislation to join the eNLC in time for implementation on January 19, 2018. Click here for more info on licensing in Massachusetts.
To Do & See in Massachusetts
Massachusetts has everything from beautiful beaches to magnificent mountains and bustling cities like Boston to quaint enclaves like Rockport.
On the urban tip, Massachusetts’ largest cities include Boston, Worcester, Springfield, Cambridge, and Lowell. The region is rife with history, arts, and culture, particularly in the capital city of Boston, where you’ll want to explore the famed Freedom Trail, Faneuil Hall, Paul Revere House, New England Aquarium, National Historic Park, Newbury Street, Boston Harborwalk, Boston Common & Public Garden, Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, Harvard Square, Boston Public Library, Massachusetts State House, and so much more!
A couple of quirky Boston must-dos include riding the swan boats in the Public Garden pond, visiting the Mapparium where you can go inside a gigantic glass globe, and grabbing a barstool at the original Cheers in Beacon Hill!
Boston also has some incredible whale watching that will take you out into the Stellwagen Bank Marine Sanctuary and you don’t want to miss the Italian cuisine and cannolis in the city’s famous North End, an iconic “Little Italy” neighborhood that houses incredible historical sites as well as an abundance of delicious food.
If you’re craving pizza, look no further than the amazing Pizzeria Regina, a North End institution that I still crave on a daily basis! The Daily Catch offers the perfect combination of Italian and fresh seafood. And, when it comes to cannolis, the public is pretty well split between Mike’s Pastry and Modern pastry. I tried both — just to make sure I did my due diligence, and I would just say you can’t go wrong with either!
Sports fans will want to flock to Boston’s legendary Fenway Park to take in a Red Sox game. Massachusetts also offers the chance to see the Boston Celtics, New England Patriots, New England Revolution, Boston Bruins, and nearly 20 other minor league and semi-pro teams. And, fun sports fact: both basketball and volleyball (originally called mintonette) were invented in The Bay State!
If all that sightseeing has worked up your appetite, good, because the food in Massachusetts is spectacular. From seafood to cider donuts, dining in The Bay State is done right. State favorites include clam chowder (no tomatoes allowed!), fish ‘n’ chips, oysters, Boston Baked Beans, grilled blueberry muffins, fluffernutters, lobster rolls, fried clams, scallops, and baked stuffed scrod. For dessert, consider the aforementioned North End cannolis or Boston Cream Pie, originally served at Boston’s Parker House (now the Omni Parker House) where you can still order it to this day. Fun fact if you do visit the Omni Parker House: The restaurant there is where JFK proposed to Jacqueline Bouvier!
Wash it all down with some Dunkin Donuts coffee, an ice-cold Sam Adams, or a tall glass of cranberry juice and you’ll be doing it like a true Bay Stater!
For the outdoorsy, Massachusetts offers 91 miles of the Appalachian Trail and is home to Mount Greylock, which reportedly inspired Herman Melville to pen Moby Dick. Martha’s Vineyard, Cape Cod, and Nantucket are all notoriously stunning stops. Western Massachusetts’ beautiful Berkshires are a treat at any time of year, and throughout the state you’ll find ample opportunities for hiking, biking, climbing, golfing, whitewater rafting, ziplining, boating, rowing, skiing, and much more.
Massachusetts has some incredibly quaint small towns that are well worth a visit, like Newburyport, Rockport, Marblehead, Nanhant, Lexington, Concord, Amherst, Stockbridge, and Great Barrington.
Of course, The Bay State is also infamous for the Salem Witch Trials, which saw several folks executed for witchcraft in the 1690s. The town of 40,000 is just 45 minutes north of Boston and makes a great day trip, especially around Halloween time! In addition to a trip to the Salem Witch House, make time for a stop at the Peabody Essex Museum and The House of the Seven Gables.
Massachusetts Fast Facts
State Nickname: The Bay State
Capital & Largest City: Boston
National Parks: 15
State Parks, Recreation Areas, Trails, and Forests: 151
National Historic and Natural Landmarks: 200
State Motto: “Ense petit placidam sub libertate quietem” — meaning “By the sword we seek peace, but peace only under liberty.”
State Flower: Mayflower
State Tree: American Elm
State Insect: Ladybug
State Beverage: Cranberry Juice
State Dessert: Boston Cream Pie
Massachusetts was the 6th state and one of the 13 original colonies.
Chocolate chip cookies, disposable safety razors, Bose speakers, microwaves, rubber tires, Tupperware, The Iron Lung, the World Wide Web, basketball, volleyball, computerized spreadsheets, the birth control pill, and the country’s first subway system were all invented in Massachusetts. Heck, some even say that America itself was invented in Massachusetts!
Folk hero Johnny Appleseed is typically associated with the Midwest, but he was born in Leominster, Massachusetts.
The first-ever telephone call was made in Boston, on March 10, 1876, between Alexander Graham Bell and his assistant Thomas Watson, who was in the next room.
Boston Latin, the oldest school in America, was established in 1635 — one year prior to the launch of a little institution of higher ed known as Harvard.
The world’s first digital, real-time computer, the Whirlwind I, was created at MIT in 1951.
Boston Common is the nation’s oldest public park.
The Fig Newton was not named after Sir Isaac Newton, but rather the town of Newton, Massachusetts.
Dunkin Donuts was launched in Quincy, Massachusetts.
Worcester’s WORC radio station was the first frequency to play The Beatles.
During the ice age, glaciers formed the islands of Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.
The first Thanksgiving Day was celebrated in 1621 in Plymouth.
The first zip code in the United States was given to Agawam, Massachusetts. It is 01001.
Rockport, Massachusetts has a house made entirely of newspaper.
Massachusetts has the lowest divorce rate in the nation.
The Bay State is home to the lake with the longest name on the planet: Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg.
Famous folks from Massachusetts include Frederick Douglass, Amy Poehler, Sylvia Plath, Dr. Seuss, Conan O’Brien, Norman Rockwell, Edgar Allen Poe, Timothy Leary, John Cena, Abigail Adams, Susan B. Anthony, W.E.B. Du Bois, John F. Kennedy, Lizzie Borden, Matt Damon, Steve Carell, Mindy Kaling, Jay Leno, Uzo Aduba, Denis Leary, Elizabeth Banks, Mark Wahlberg, Barbara Walters, Leonard Nimoy, Geena Davis, Uma Thurman, Rob Zombie, Meghan Trainor, John Adams, Samuel Adams, and so many others!
Happy Hours have been banned in Boston since 1984.
The colorful Green Monster at Fenway Park is so iconic that The Red Sox actually patented the hue “Fenway Green.”
Boston is known as “Beantown” because of how much its early residents loved baked beans in molasses.