2020 Tillman Scholar
A need to serve others is a constant for Cassie and the specific urge to serve her country was never stronger than when less than four months after graduating high school, 9/11 occurred. Cassie attended college to earn a bachelor’s of science in nursing and, upon its completion in 2005, immediately commissioned into the U.S. Navy to serve in the nurse corps.
The Navy taught Cassie teamwork, leadership, strength through pressure and flexibility. One of her greatest desires was to deploy to Iraq or Afghanistan and use her nursing skills to help save the lives of her fellow servicemembers. While logistics ultimately prevented her deployment to the Middle East, she was honored to serve aboard the U.S.S. Boxer and assist other countries in humanitarian efforts.
Shortly after leaving the Navy and recently married to another servicemember, Cassie was diagnosed with cancer and needed immediate treatment to not only save her life, but to also save any hope of having children in the future. This struggle as a woman, a wife and a future mother illuminated how her clinical nursing skills could be used to help women undergoing similar scenarios.
Ten years after leaving the Navy and 15 years as a nurse, Cassie is now pursuing her doctorate in women’s health nursing and using her personal experiences to support and treat women in the community under the philosophy of cura personalis, or care for the whole person.