Student Veterans Advancing Their Nursing Education

Sam DiStefano
By Sam DiStefano  | 
Student Veterans Advancing Their Nursing Education

Veterans Day is a time to recognize the contributions of those who have served, and currently serve in the U.S. armed forces. Today, we recognize several student veterans and hear why they decided to pursue a degree in nursing.

Captain Celeste A. Chavez

Active-Duty US Army, Nurse Corps and PhD Student

I am an active-duty Army midwife and was selected to complete my PhD in Nursing research with the specific goal of becoming the Army’s subject matter expert on reproductive health, sexual assault, trauma, and healing. There are roughly 12 nurse researchers in the Army, all with specific areas of study. Currently, none specialize in reproductive health. My area of interest is healing in the context of military sexual assault.

Corporal Patrick Lamping

Marine Corps Veteran and MSN (Entry into Nursing) Student

I decided to pursue nursing because it gives me a chance to serve again after my time in the Marines. The challenging and ever-evolving nature of the profession is something that called to me. There is a sense of purpose and teamwork that I was not getting from my previous jobs outside of the military so I decided to make the switch as soon as I could. My goals are to work in an ICU or emergency setting, learn as much as I can, and move up the ladder from there.

Captain Kylie Casey

Army Reserve and DNP Executive Track Student

From a young age, I was drawn to the field of nursing, recognizing it as my true calling — a profession where compassion meets critical care. It was with unwavering certainty that I entered nurse practitioner school, driven by a vision to not only provide care but to innovate within the health care system. My aspiration is to graduate with my Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) from Johns Hopkins University, an institution whose values deeply resonate with my own. With the knowledge and experience gained there, I aim to spearhead transformative changes in the Organ Donation System, ensuring it becomes more efficient, ethical, and accessible. Beyond clinical practice, I am passionate about nurturing the next generation of nurses and leaders. I envision myself as an educator and mentor, imparting wisdom and fostering a spirit of excellence and innovation in nursing students who will continue to push the boundaries of what’s possible in health care.

Specialist Tanner Belden

Retired US Army and DNP-FNP Track Student

The opportunity to be that element within the community that reduces health care disparities and improves the quality of care is what has given me the drive and motivation to become a nurse practitioner. In the role of a family nurse practitioner, I will continually broaden my knowledge and experience by practicing in the role of a primary care provider. I want to open a primary care office with the goal of bringing quality care to the community that I serve.

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About the Author: Sam DiStefano

Sam DiStefano is the Social Media and Digital Content Coordinator for the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing. Sam works to bring the latest from JHUSON straight to your social media feeds and online reading.

Sam DiStefano

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