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From Valor to Vital Signs

Husband and Wife Photographed

Hanging up a military uniform in exchange for a work uniform is a decision the VA understands best.

For every Veteran leaving the service there is a transformative journey from the battlefield to everyday life. For many this can be extremely difficult, but with VA there is always help.

Inspired by her family's legacy and driven by a deep-rooted desire to serve, U.S. Army Veteran Carianne Hill's path to healthcare was ignited by her own experiences and the challenges of continuous deployments.

In the heart of Women's History Month, Carianne is reminded of her remarkable journey. Transitioning from fifteen military years of dedicated service to a beacon of care at the VA medical center in sunny, breezy West Palm Beach.

Her dedication stems long ago with a record of five back-to-back deployments. Aside from being a soldier, she too is a proud mother. She says, "I couldn’t keep leaving my children and husband." 

Carianne reflects on her decision to transition, marking the beginning of a new chapter of a different type of service, one where she traded in her combat boots for a stethoscope. 

Transitioning to civilian life, Carianne sought to extend her service through healthcare, finding her way to the West Palm Beach VA Medical Center. 

In her scrubs now, she embarked on a transformative journey through the Compensated Work Therapy (CWT) program. She signed with great relief as she says, “Finding the West Palm Beach VA Medical Center was a turning point for me."

As the VA believed in her, she too grew to believe in herself and take on new challenges. 

After a few years of serving Veteran patients, Carianne became a Registered Nurse, fueled by her pursuit of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). 

As a wife, mother, daughter, and colleague, the challenging demands of balancing education, family, and work, amidst the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, highlight her resilient strength. 

She says, “The most rewarding aspect was earning my BSN, passing the RN-NCLEX exam, and having my supportive husband there by my side during it all." Her journey of resilience and balancing the ways of being a woman was challenged the most at this time, but in her own words she says, “I won that battle.” 

Carianne’s journey is a beacon of inspiration, showing that with support and mentorship, there is nothing stopping Veterans from transitioning to civilian life and living out the way they feel best. 

Not only boosting her confidence as a woman, but also in her career choices, she says, “The VA has been beyond a blessing to me." 

Learn more about how Compensated Work Therapy (CWT) program pushes Veterans to their full potential: