UCO ROTC Cadet Receives National Scholarship to Pursue Military Career in Mental Health

University of Central Oklahoma ROTC cadet, battalion commander and senior nursing student Casey Strong has been named as one of five recipients of the U.S. Army’s F. Edward Hebert Health Services Professional Scholarship for students pursuing careers as nurse practitioners.

Dec. 10, 2013

Media Contact: Lindsay Houts, Staff Writer, UCO University Relations, 405-974-2121, lhouts@uco.edu

UCO ROTC CADET RECEIVES NATIONAL SCHOLARSHIP TO PURSUE MILITARY CAREER IN MENTAL HEALTH

University of Central Oklahoma ROTC cadet, battalion commander and senior nursing student Casey Strong has been named as one of five recipients of the U.S. Army’s F. Edward Hebert Health Services Professional Scholarship for students pursuing careers as nurse practitioners.

Strong, originally from Wylie, Texas, will commission as a second lieutenant in May 2014 and immediately afterward enroll in a nurse practitioner program specializing in the mental health field.

The scholarship includes the complete cost of tuition, as well as books, equipment, most fees and a monthly stipend.

"My dream job is to work at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center with soldiers who are amputees or who are battling PTSD. I would like to specialize in this field as many of my military years have already enabled me to help many of my friends with post-combat issues. This is my calling and I am very excited and humbled at the thought of this opportunity,” Strong said.

Strong has a family history of both medicine and military service: her mother is a 1973 alumna of Central’s nursing program and her father served in the Army.

In addition to her scholarship, Strong was named a Distinguished Military Graduate for 2014. The honor is reserved for the top 20 percent of cadets and is based on GPA, community service and leadership in the ROTC.

“Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner is currently one of the hardest and most sought-after job specialties and programs in the U.S. Army as well as the ROTC U.S. Army Cadet Command for nurses. We are very proud of Cadet Strong and the prestigious honors she received. Hundreds vie for this scholarship, and that she won it and earned the designation of Distinguished Military Graduate is a testament to her hard work and the excellent education she has received at UCO,” said retired Army Master Sgt. John Taylor, instructor of military science at Central.               

Strong will interview with the University of Texas at San Antonio, the University of Utah School of Medicine and Western Kentucky University School of Nursing before deciding where she will pursue her degree. Upon completion of her studies, she will advance to the rank of captain.               

For more information about Central’s ROTC program, visit www.busn.uco.edu/armyrotc.

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Editor’s Note: To download art associated with this release, visit www.uco.edu/photo/Strong12.13.

Cutline: University of Central Oklahoma ROTC cadet, battalion commander and senior nursing student Casey Strong has been named as one of five recipients of the U.S. Army’s F. Edward Hebert Health Services Professional Scholarship for students pursuing careers as nurse practitioners.