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METC Partnership Provides Pathway for Active Duty, Veterans

Medics treat a simulated gunshot wound on a K9 Diesel advanced canine medical simulator. Army Reserve medics with the 343rd Ground Medical Company treat a simulated gunshot wound on a K9 Diesel advanced canine medical simulator as part of Regional Medic at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, July 15, 2021. Army medics and Navy corpsmen can earn college credit toward a nursing degree for experience earned while service through DHA’s Medical Education and Training Campus’ partnership with Davenport University. (U.S. Army photo by Army Maj. Alice Robertson)

Seventy-two current military or veterans have graduated from Davenport University’s Corpsman and Combat Medic to Veterans Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, a joint venture between Davenport and the Defense Health Agency’s Medical Education and Training Campus in San Antonio, Texas.

Davenport University is just one of nearly 90 colleges and universities across the country that METC partners with to establish degree bridge programs for military personnel.

Barry Moore, METC strategic planning and partnerships, explained how service members and veterans receive maximum credit for the training they receive and experience they gain while serving; saving them significant time and money toward a college degree.

“This benefits the MHS (Military Health System) by providing better educated healthcare professionals in duty assignments worldwide and at home. One-third of METC students are in the National Guard or Reserves,” he added.

According to the university’s website, “Military personnel who are currently serving or have been honorably discharged and have experienced paramedic level certified medical military training equivalent to LPN training, Medic 68W levels 10 and 20, and Navy Corpsman have the potential to go through an accelerated acceptance process at the Lansing, Great Lakes Bay or Warren Campus.”  

Jason Bos, partnership manager of military, Davenport University, explained the university’s VBSN program provides military students the opportunity to receive a minimum of 40 credits toward their degree after evaluating their military experience and training.

From 2013-2019, the project was supported by a grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,” Bos said. “The Pathway created by this grant continues as an option for military medically trained students who are interested in nursing.”

Although the grant ended, Davenport continued the VBSN Pathway by awarding advanced standing credits for all military medical personnel without additional funding or outside support.

Davenport Associate Professor Kim Garza, explained how the other professors step in, when necessary, ensuring the non-veteran nursing students are given the opportunity to grow and become better leaders.

“Our non-veteran nursing students often lack the world experience and training of the veteran nursing students,” Garza added. “They will start leading when they perceive a lack of direction.”

Air Force Brig. Gen. Anita L. Fligge, deputy assistant director for education & training, added how the partnership with Davenport was the culmination of tremendous coordination by the METC and Davenport.

“These men and women are serving or did serve their country with honor and distinction,” said Fligge, who is also DHA’s chief nurse. “They will continue to serve with the same dedication and compassion no matter the hospital, medical center or clinic that employs them after earning their degrees.

“The experience our medics and corpsmen receive while either serving at a military medical treatment facility, or deployed in support of combat operations or humanitarian missions, is extremely valuable,” Fligge added. “Davenport understands that and gives them credit for the experience they earn while serving.”

Current service members and veterans interested in applying for the program, can find out more information at Davenport University’s Veterans Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

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