"Optimizing Combat Casualty Care"

Burn Center nurses accepted to LTHET

By Steven Galvan, Public Affairs Officer
U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research
07 AUGUST 2013

Three nurses from the U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research (USAISR) Burn Center at Joint Base San Antonio—Fort Sam Houston have been accepted to the Army’s Long Term Health Education and Training Degree Programs for active duty Medical Service officers.

Maj. Christopher “Chris” VanFosson, Clinical Nurse Officer in Charge, Burn Progressive Care Unit, 4 East; and Capts. Gordon Briscoe and Stephanie Kessinger, Burn Center Intensive Care Unit nurses and members of the Burn Flight Team, were selected to further their education and careers as Army Nurse Corps officers.

“It’s important to understand that only the best of the best are selected,” said Lt. Col. Paul Mittelstead, Burn Center chief of nurses. “It’s very competitive. It also indicates the level of commitment these officers have displayed and the commitment the Army is willing to make to their futures.”

VanFossen has been accepted for a Ph.D. in Nursing (Nurse Scientist) at a school of his choice. He plans to apply at the University of Texas at Austin and Houston and the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

“I’m just happy to be able to expand my educational foundation and gain a new perspective on health care, nursing, and Army Medicine,” he said. “In the end, I hope that doctorate-level critical thinking will make me a better nurse, officer, and an Army Medicine leader.”

Briscoe has also been accepted for Ph.D. in Nursing program and will attend the University of .

“I am grateful for the opportunity to continue my education and advance my military career,” said Briscoe. “After many years of hard work and sacrifices my family and I am excited to start a new chapter.”

Kessinger has been accepted to earn a Masters at Baylor University in Healthcare Administration.

“I am grateful and excited to start a new chapter in my Army career,” she said. “My goal is to complete the Baylor program with honors and then obtain a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives credentialing.”