News: USF graduate earns Army scholarship
Story by Lisa Simunaci
TAMPA, Fla. - Hilary Jones is looking forward to a career as an Army physician.
The Seffner native and recent graduate of the University of South Florida will attend medical school this fall on the Army’s Health Professions Scholarship Program. The Army scholarship pays full tuition, books and fees along with a monthly stipend.
“I’m looking forward serving the most deserving people in our country,” Jones said. “I think soldiers are just astounding, they spend so much of their life devoting their time to others.”
Jones is currently finishing up her master’s degree in medical sciences at the University of South Florida and will attend William Carey University in Hattiesburg, Miss., this fall. She hopes to specialize in obstetrics and gynecology.
“I know I’m really lucky that I know what I want to do and I’m happy to have found people who support me,” Jones said.
The future doctor credits her science teacher father along with her grandmother’s ability to overcome a difficult health prognosis for helping solidify her decision to pursue a career in medicine.
“Science has always fascinated me – and as I became older, the human organism is what really fascinated me,” Jones said. “We are so resilient with such great mechanisms to heal. There is so much that can go wrong, but most of us turn out OK.”
Tampa Medical Recruiter Capt. Steven Fields said the Army provides a great career path for students like Jones who are going to medical school.
“Many students don’t know what the Army offers in terms of medical school scholarships,” Fields said. “Besides attending the school of their choice, students have many career paths and the advantage of graduating from medical school debt free.”
Those who attend school on the Army scholarship are promoted to captain upon their graduation and then they move on to a military residency program.
For Jones, the Army provided both career options and a chance to continue a family legacy. “The financial help was the first incentive, but there was a lot more to consider,” she said. “I really looked into it and saw the great things the Army has to offer, particularly the residency program slots.” Both of Jones’ grandfathers served in the Army, so she said she is proud to carry that tradition forward.
Along with the medical school program, the F. Edward Herbert Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship Program is available to help students finance their graduate dental, veterinary and clinical psychology degrees, as well as select nursing and specialty degrees. About 500 scholarships are awarded each year. For more information, visit www.healthcare.goarmy.com.