Veteran & Active Military Resources: Jefferson Veterans Profiles

This ongoing feature will introduce you to members of the Jefferson College of Health Sciences community who have served in the military. Check this page often to see new profiles.

Meet Eddie Charles George, Jr.

Eddie Charles George, Jr. enlisted in the Army as an artillery cannon crewmember. He felt that the Army would give him a way to express his patriotism, find a career and become motivated. But, a twist of fate would change his direction again when he suffered an injury during basic training—one which put him face-to-face with healthcare professionals responsible for his healing. “It was this interaction with the medical field that made me realize that a job in healthcare was for me,” Eddie said. You can read more about Eddie by clicking here.

Meet Jessica Schwind

Jessica Schwind wanted to travel, see the world and explore her opportunities. She felt that wasn’t going to happen in Roanoke—her peers were working at K-Mart and fast food places. She knew she could and should do better. Her ticket was to join the Air Force. With a GED, the Air Force would take Jessica more quickly than other branches of the armed services, and it was also the branch that her father served in. So, the choice was easy to make. You can read more about Jessica by clicking here.

Meet Cheryl Sizer

Cheryl Sizer isn’t afraid of an adventure. In fall 2016, she embarked on a new journey when she entered the Jefferson College of Health Sciences Physician Assistant Program. Her new academic career wasn't her only adventure, though: to become a PA student, she actually moved with her family—four children and a husband, her father and her dependent sister—to Greensboro, NC from Colorado, where she'd lived for 20 years after retiring from the Air Force. Now, she is adjusting to commuting back to her family on weekends, but she's thrilled to be here. You can read more about Cheryl by clicking here.

Meet Grover Craft

Grover Craft, Jefferson College of Health Science’s Veteran Student Affairs Coordinator, joined the Navy at age 23 with the intention of staying in just long enough to qualify for education dollars. Little did he anticipate that he would be promoted up through the ranks, ending up with a 30-year career and an officer rank of Commander. Craft feels very strongly about veterans in general, saying that his years of service made him accountable. Now, he feels that accountability towards veterans and wants to help our students transition to civilian and school life. You can read more about Grover by clicking here.

Meet Ashley Richards

Ashley Richards’ entire family was born, worked and stayed in Niagara Falls, New York and the surrounding area. But, not Richards. She saw the Army Reserves as a way out of town and into healthcare. She trained as a certified surgical technician because, when asked if she had an aversion to blood, she answered, “no.”  For the next eight years, she was part of the 1982nd Forward Surgical Team. In November 2011, she was deployed with her unit to the Hindu Kush Mountains of Afghanistan.You can read more about Ashley by clicking here.

Meet James Miller, M.S.N.

As an Assistant Professor in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program at Jefferson College of Health Sciences, James Miller teaches courses for the Accelerated and Traditional BSN programs. In fall 2015, he took on an additional role as the College’s Veterans Retention Advisor for the new Veterans Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (VBSN) program. The role of Veterans Retention Advisor has special meaning for Miller since he is himself a veteran. You can read more about James by clicking here.

Meet Juan Monterrey

Juan Monterrey—a Surgical Technology student by day, Carilion Clinic Maintenance employee by night—said he enlisted in the military at 18 because there were adults asking him what he was going to be doing with his life. He joined the Navy for direction. Juan’s ideal future job will involve him being in charge—something else the Navy gave him an appreciation for—perhaps as a director of an operating room in a major hospital. You can read more about Juan by clicking here.

Meet Leigh Ramsey, M.S.N., ACNS-BC

After graduating from Radford University with a Bachelor of Science in Biology in 1996, Leigh Ramsey sought another challenge that would take her to see the world—the Air Force. She loved medicine and science and gravitated toward becoming a medic. She is now An Assistant Professor in the Jefferson College Nursing Program. You can read more about Leigh by clicking here.

Meet Christine Parsons

Christine Parsons is used to taking care of others. Her mother and father did that while Parsons was growing up in a small Ohio town—taking in stray animals and children who needed a loving home. Since then, Parsons has continued this tradition by becoming an Air Force medic and now, a Physician Assistant student at Jefferson College of Health Sciences, graduating in December 2014. You can read more about Christine by clicking here.

Meet Michael Feroli

Michael Feroli found the military through the Jefferson College of Health Sciences Physician Assistant (PA) program rather than the other way around. A December 2011 graduate of the program, Feroli became a Naval officer the following summer and found fulfillment in both the clinical setting at Camp Pendleton, CA, and the more intensive environment of a mobile trauma team at Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan during the summer and fall of 2013. You can read more about Michael by clicking here.

Meet Erica Rospert

Erica Rospert, pursuing her Associate of Applied Science Degree in Surgical Technology at Jefferson College of Health Sciences, loves challenges and can’t tolerant when things stay the same. The Army seemed to suit her perfectly, where she says she, "grew up." Now, as she faces different challenges as a Surgical Technology student, she is able to better work her way through them due to her maturity, focus and discipline. You can read more about Erica by clicking here.

Meet Eric Wilson

If it weren’t for his mother, Eric Wilson would have joined the Army right out of high school. Instead, he attended college, graduated three and a half years later with a Bachelor of Science in Political Science, and finally he got his wish to defend his nation. Once enlisted, Eric had plenty of opportunities to defend the United States in locations like Iraq and The Philippines. The toughness that he built up through the Army has come in handy during his studies in the Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program at Jefferson College. You can read more about Eric by clicking here.

Meet Ryan Blatt

When Ryan Blatt graduated high school in 1990 and joined the Navy, he took it as his chance to leave home, mature, establish independence and learn life skills. At 41 years old, that punctuality, maturity, and ability to communicate has helped him considerably as a student in the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program at Jefferson College of Health Sciences, from which he anticipates graduating in the Spring of 2016. You can read more about Ryan by clicking here.

Meet Tami Bobe

Tami Bobe joined the Army in 2000, answering the lures of travel, educational benefits and structure that, as a teenager, she wanted and needed. Now, Bobe is in the Army Reserves and she is pursuing her Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing at Jefferson College.  She says the discipline, the experiences, and her two children have made her much more mature and able to focus on what is in front of her—her future as a nurse. You can read more about Tami by clicking here.

Meet Betsy Worthley

Betsy Worthley graduated from the Jefferson College Physician Assistant program in December 2010 and went straight to Navy office training in Rhode Island. For her, the whirlwind that was her life as a PA student simply became more extreme. For the next three years, she served active duty in Hawaii, at the Naval Health Clinic at Kaneohe Bay, and was also deployed to Paktika, Afghanistan, as the senior medical office for a Joint Provincial Reconstruction Team. You can read more about Betsy by clicking here.

Meet Jay Wynn

Jay Wynn knows he's very good at helping people who want to help themselves. That's why he's perfectly suited to the Jefferson College Physical Therapist Assistant Program. While a Marine, Jay had the opportunity to live in Okinawa, Japan, and travel the world as a loadmaster on a KC-130, which transported everything from “band aids to bullets,” and sometimes, wounded soldiers from Afghanistan and Iraq. You can read more about Jay by clicking here.

Meet Marrett Gilfus

Marrett Gilfus, a student in the Jefferson College of Health Sciences Emergency Services Program, recalled the moment he knew he would make a good paramedic. He had been trained as a combat lifesaver in the Marine Corps, and Marrett helped save the life of a fellow Marine during a fire fight in the Helmand province in Afghanistan. You can read more about Marrett by clicking here.

Meet Misti Hagerman-Beard

As a former Marine, Misit Hagerman-Beard doesn’t shrink from tough choices or tough jobs. That's one of the reasons she chose the Jefferson College of Health Sciences Healthcare Management program, which offers her the chance to cultivate her skills as a leader while integrating her interest in healthcare. You can read more about Misti by clicking here.

Meet Stephen Harris

Stephen Harris, an Army veteran, former Roanoke County deputy sheriff, husband and father of three children (ages seven, four and 11) found his niche at Jefferson College of Health Sciences. The skills he learned on the job and in the military were easily translatable to the demands of his education. You can read more about Stephen by clicking here.