FEBRUARY 25, 2016, MILLINGTON, Tenn. (NNS) – Many health care graduates enter the job market looking for the opportunity to help others or the prospect of financial stability. The private sector provides plenty of opportunities to accomplish these goals. But what about those graduates who are looking for a little more? To inspire and be inspired by others? What about those who dream of making a global impact?
Some of those dreamers have found that they can accomplish those goals as part of the U.S. Navy Health Care team.
Lt. Cmdr. Osmel Alfonso, Medical Leads program manager for Navy Recruiting Command, followed his dream by serving in the U.S. Navy.
“As a medical service corps officer, the best part of serving for me is the fact that everything I do is to support the delivery of care,” said Alfonso. “It truly is an honor to be a part of the process that assures future Sailors and Marines will be taken care of by the premiere health care team in the world.”
While Alfonso chose the Medical Service Corps (MSC), other applicants may choose to enter the Medical Corps (MC), the Dental Corps (DC), or the Nurse Corps (NC).
The NC has one student program called the ‘Nurse Candidate Program’ for individuals in nursing school leading to a Bachelor of Science in nursing from an accredited institution. The NC has opportunities in both the reserves and active duty depending on the area of specialization.
The MC, DC, and MSC provide two student programs, (Health Profession Scholarship Program and the Health Services Collegiate Program), for active-duty Sailors while in their respective schools. The three corps also have opportunities for those interested in the U.S. Navy Reserve.
The U.S. Navy Reserve is primarily looking for health care professionals for the following specialties: general surgeons, orthopedic surgeons, anesthesiologists, oral surgeons, and perioperative nurses.
The Health Professions Scholarship Program offers prospective military physicians, dentists, nurse practitioners, social workers, optometrists, psychologists, physician assistants, pharmacists, and veterinarians a paid medical education in exchange for service as a commissioned medical department officer.
The Health Services Collegiate Program is a scholarship program designed to provide financial incentives for students in designated health care professions to complete degree/certification requirements and obtain a commission in the MC, DC, or MSC.
Recipients of the scholarships enter their respective corps, each of which provide their own unique service to the Navy Health Care team.
Officers in the MSC are an integral component of the Navy Medicine enterprise and make up more than 2,900 active duty and reserve officers who are serving in 31 specialties ranging from clinical providers, to scientists, to health care administrators.
The MC is comprised of physicians who specialize in areas such as general surgery, orthopedic surgery, and anesthesiology.
The DC consists of naval officers who have a doctorate in either dental surgery or dental medicine and who practice dentistry for Sailors and Marines to ensure optimal oral health.
Those in the NC focus on the care of Sailors and Marines in a variety of areas from critical care to the operating room. Through the Navy’s medical programs, applicants have the opportunity to gain further education and training that will pay dividends in both their professional and personal life.
“I was fortunate enough that when I enlisted I was offered to be a hospital corpsman,” said Alfonso. “Subsequently, I obtained my bachelor’s degree in health care management and was commissioned under the In-service Procurement Program as an ensign in the Medical Service Corps. My goal of going to school was exceeded by obtaining three degrees all while working full time under the Navy’s tuition assistance program. Since I was fortunate enough to use tuition assistance to obtain my degrees, my kids were given my Montgomery G.I. Bill.”
The tuition assistance program and Montgomery G.I. Bill are two of the many incentives that the Navy offers to aspiring health care professionals. It is also a big reason why many dreamers enter the service after graduation.
Ambitious health care professionals have a few questions to ask themselves following graduation: Am I interested in building camaraderie? Do I want access to the latest technology and techniques in the medical field? Is the prospect of delivering global medical support appealing? How does unmatched growth in leadership and management sound? Have I considered serving my nation while gaining experience in my area of expertise?
If they find themselves answering yes to these questions, then joining the U.S. Navy might be the right choice for them.
For more information on opportunities the Navy has to offer in the health care profession, visit http://www.navy.com