Support our mission
 
Cadet Sara Hess, left, assists 1st Lt. Parker Hahn in bandaging a patient’s wound Friday at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center. Hess, who will be a senior at Radford University’s School of Nursing in Virginia and is also in ROTC, will work at Landstuhl for four weeks as part of the Army’s nurse summer training program.
Cadet Sara Hess, left, assists 1st Lt. Parker Hahn in bandaging a patient’s wound Friday at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center. Hess, who will be a senior at Radford University’s School of Nursing in Virginia and is also in ROTC, will work at Landstuhl for four weeks as part of the Army’s nurse summer training program. (Steve Mraz / S&S)

LANDSTUHL, Germany — After her first 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. shift at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, Sara Hess is — more than ever — excited about becoming a nurse.

The 21-year-old ROTC cadet will enter her final year of nursing school at Radford University, Va., this August. But for the next four weeks, she will be working at Landstuhl as part of the Army’s nurse summer training program.

Hess is one of seven nursing cadets participating in the program this summer at Landstuhl.

The program offers cadets majoring in nursing an internship at Army hospitals around the world. Hess applied and was accepted at Landstuhl, her first choice.

“What better place to have my first military experience as a nurse,” Hess said Friday at the medical center.

And while at Landstuhl, Hess has the chance to get reacquainted with 1st Lt. Parker Hahn, the person who recruited her for the ROTC nursing program. Hahn, who graduated from Radford’s nursing school in 2002, works as a registered nurse at Landstuhl.

“It’s pretty cool to see somebody who you talked to while they were still in high school,” Hahn said. “Now, she’s in the best hospital in the Army with an experience that none of her other nursing students will see, being the [Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom] hub that we are.”

Hess spent her Thursday-night-into-Friday-morning shift shadowing hospital staff, giving medications and watching IV bags being changed. She also took a patient downstairs to be airlifted from the hospital.

Knowing the rigors of nursing school along with the requirements of ROTC, Hahn is impressed that Hess is scheduled to finish in four years.

“For me, it’s really exciting that she’s stuck with the program,” Hahn said. “You’ll start with anywhere from 12 to 15 nurses as a freshman student, and you usually only graduate two to five of them in a four- to five-year time period.”

Even though Hahn participated in the nurse summer training program at Tripler Army Medical Center in Honolulu, he believes Landstuhl is the best opportunity for cadets.

“Today, my cadet is up front right now with the major, and she’s going to experience seven air evacs going out and three or so air evacs coming in — all war injuries,” Hahn said. “This is as opposed to a gall bladder surgery that would be done back in the States. The cadets are going to see it firsthand here, and that’s just a phenomenal experience to start your nursing career.”

Hess hopes her summer stint at Landstuhl is not her last time at the medical center.

“I would love to be stationed here after I commission,” she said. “I just hope that happens.”

Migrated

Stripes in 7



around the web


Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign-up to receive a daily email of today’s top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign up