News: Medic plans to take Army experience to next level
Story by Spc. Richard Colletta
TIKRIT, Iraq — Sgt. Justin Rodenbaugh a 26-year-old health care specialist serving with Company C, 701st Brigade Support Battalion, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st infantry Division out of Fort Riley, Kan., has big plans for the future.
After six years of service in the Army, the Mobile, Ala., native plans on taking his Army training to the next level.
"I plan on going to medical school and becoming a doctor," Sgt. Rodenbaugh said.
He's currently three semesters shy of graduating with a bachelor's degree in Biology. After getting accepted and completing medical school he wants to become a specialist in Gastroenterology, a field of medicine primarily focused on the function and disorders of the digestive system.
He chuckles and admits it's not the most glamorous field of medicine but if a patient has stomach problems they're going to want to see someone like him.
Rodenbaugh also aspires to run his own clinic. He said his experiences in the Army teaching and leading Soldiers has really helped him.
"I've gained a lot of leadership traits which I think are going to help me," he said.
While Rodenbaugh wasn't exactly sure what he wanted when he joined the Army, he did know he wanted to get out on his own and accomplish something for himself.
"I was one of those kids that came out of high school with a little bit of college not knowing what I wanted and not having any responsibility," Rodenbaugh said. "The Army pointed me in the direction I wanted to be in the first place. I just didn't know it."
Rodenbaugh says his parents and wife, Lea are supportive of him serving in the Army. He also has a 3-year-old daughter, McKinsey. He said she doesn't know a lot yet but she knows her daddy is in Iraq. Although he has missed time away from his Family he said it has been worth it. He has enjoyed his time in the Army and looks forward to taking it to the next level when his enlistment is over in November.
"Where I'm at right now isn't necessarily where I was I headed when I joined the military, but I'm glad I was pointed in this direction," Rodenbaugh said.