Alum Selected for Top Graduate Program

Feb. 6, 2015 - by Jillian Marsh

During an MNU graduation ceremony, a young man stepped on stage and took his oath of office into the US Marine Corps. The audience was moved—expressing so in a standing ovation. But a 15-year-old boy was moved to something more.

Sam1 DAS3870Sam Smith, nursing major, was in the audience that day. It was in that moment of standing applause Smith knew he wanted to follow in the young lieutenant’s footsteps. Smith enrolled at MNU and joined the football team, all while being an active ROTC member. 

While Smith’s initial aspirations were of leading on the front lines, God’s plans were different. After joining the Army National Guard to help pay his way through school, Smith discovered that he was color blind. Faced with the choice of becoming a clerk or a combat medic, Smith chose the latter—discovering his passion for medicine during basic training. “I applied for the nursing program at MNU and never looked back,” he recalls.

Smith currently works as a nurse at San Antonio Military Medical Center which has doubled in size since his arrival. He’s assisted in opening a new unit and was one of only six nurses selected to apply for the White House Nurse position. Smith recently became one of only five Army nurses selected to attend the US Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing—the #1 program in the United States.

 

  • Selected for the Fort Sam Houston All-Army Combative Team in his first year.
  • Participated in Residence Hall Government at MNU (and met his future wife Amy Sturdefant (’06) as a part of this group).
  • Has two sons, Lincoln 4, and Creighton 2, and a dog named Nala.
 

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Latest Photos
LC-Ribbon-1 Mabee Learning Commons now includes the Academic Success Center and the Library.
LC-Ribbon-44 The team that helped bring these changes to Mabee Learning Commons through the US Dept. of Education grant, poses together. Left to right: Dr. Linda Alexander, Rick Hanson, Julie, Lon Dagley, Whitney Gray, Marcelle Cooper, Christine Snyder, Bruce Flanders, Jon Spence, Janelle Jefferson, Lauren Hays, Brenda Ebert, Dr. David Spittal, Mitch Hazen (Nabholz Construction).
LC-Ribbon-26 US Representative Kevin Yoder joined President Dr. David Spittal, Library Director Bruce Flanders, Director of Facilities Services John Spence, Associate VP for Academic and Professional Success Rick Hanson, Mayor Mike Copeland, Mitch Hazen (Nabholz Construction) and Olathe Chamber CEO Tim McKee for the Ribbon Cutting.
LC-Ribbon-8 A large group of students, faculty, staff, alumni and the community gathered for the Learning Commons ribbon cutting October 21, 2016.
LC-48 Several rooms are available for meeting, testing or other working groups.
LC-41 Alumni who have toured the Learning Commons in person find the new space surprising. All the books are upstairs and the first floor is an excellent area for a variety of meetings, conversations and even hanging out.