Weber State helps military nurses step into new careers as educators

OGDEN, Utah — A new partnership at Weber State University is helping veterans seamlessly transition from military service to fulfilling civilian careers as nurse educators. 

The Annie Taylor Dee School of Nursing at Weber State is now an industry partner with the U.S. Department of Defense’s SkillBridge program, which gives military personnel the opportunity to gain civilian work experience during their last six months of service. 

“Weber State is known as a military-friendly school, and this shows our continued dedication,” said London Draper Lowe, WSU nursing professor and SkillBridge program coordinator. “We care about the military community and want them to be part of our school.”Michael Humphrey and London Draper Lowe are smiling for a picture in Weber State's nursing simulation lab.

Retiring or separating military nurses with a master’s or doctoral degree can apply for a five-month internship at WSU, which involves working alongside instructors to learn and experience all aspects of nursing education. 

Weber State’s nursing program has 63 faculty members who teach and prepare students to meet the ever-changing demands of the industry. The school produces more nurses than any other institution in Utah, training hundreds per year to work in communities nationwide.

Lowe describes the SkillBridge partnership as beneficial for all — unlocking new career paths for veterans while also allowing WSU to tap into a highly trained, highly skilled workforce. 

Michael Humphrey, a women’s health and family nurse practitioner who recently retired from a 22-year career with the U.S. Air Force, was the first intern to complete WSU’s SkillBridge program this spring. 

“The transition out of the military can be extremely stressful and overwhelming,” Humphrey said. “That’s where SkillBridge came in. It allowed me to try out being a nurse educator with no strings attached.” 

Throughout Humphrey’s career, he has worked in labor and delivery, postpartum and newborn nurseries. His time in the military took him all over the country, and he served several deployments in the Middle East. 

Humphrey first discovered a passion for teaching while supervising and mentoring nursing students during their clinical rotations at Hill Air Force Base. Through WSU’s SkillBridge program, he made important connections and further refined his skills as an educator. 

Starting this summer, he’ll get to continue sharing his experience and knowledge at WSU, where he was recently hired as a nursing instructor in the Doctor of Nursing Practice program. 

Military nurses interested in pursuing a new chapter of their career can ask their education or transition assistance office for more information. They can also learn more by contacting a SkillBridge program representative online

“This partnership provided an avenue for me to share my distinct experience over the past two decades in the military,” Humphrey said. “Being given the opportunity to train the next generation of nurses is a true honor for me.” 


Rachel Badali, news coordinator


Rachel Badali, news coordinator