SDSU Army ROTC Cadets Embark on Inspiring Journey to Army Nursing

Cadets Brown, Tjhan, and Benedetto Share Their Journeys in the SDSU ROTC Nursing Program

Monday, December 11, 2023

Cadets Benedetto, Brown, and Tjhan (left to right).
Cadets Benedetto, Brown, and Tjhan (left to right).
San Diego State University's Army ROTC program is not only known for producing top-notch officers but is also making a mark in the medical field through its specialized nursing program. 

Professor of Military Science, Lieutenant Colonel Josh Sider, shares his excitement for three special upcoming Army Nurses.

“Cadets Benedetto, Brown, and Tjhan are leaders in our ROTC program, and we know they will be leaders in the Army Nurse Corps," said Lieutenant Colonel Sider.

Cadet Tjhan's journey through Cadet Summer Training (CST) emerges as a testament to her dedication and resilience. "One key highlight during CST was the bonding experience with my fellow cadets," reflects Tjhan, “you meet people from all over the country for the first time and are put into a group where you spend 24/7 together.”

Describing the challenges faced during CST, Tjhan emphasized the physical and mental demands, including the lack of sleep, rigorous physical exercises, and carrying heavy rucksacks. 

However, Tjhan sees these challenges as opportunities for growth. "Completing CST has given me experiences and knowledge that I can share with my ROTC program. It has made me more resilient and a problem solver," she added.

Cadet Brown, a transfer student passionate about unique medical training, excels in juggling ROTC, nursing, and a nursing lab ISA (interoperability standards advisory) role. His proudest achievement? Completing the Nurse Summer Training Program, gaining knowledge and a mentor who epitomizes the essence of an Army nurse.

Reflecting on advanced camp challenges, Brown emphasizes the crucial role of clear communication, a skill integral to both military operations and nursing tasks.

"As a future Army nurse, I learned that communication is not talking with someone, but sending a message that will be received and understood. I will have medics and licensed practical nurses working with me, and I will delegate tasks to them,” Brown said.

For Cadet Benedetto, the journey to SDSU's ROTC and nursing program was a rollercoaster. After hurdles and a change in academic plans, Benedetto now thrives in the blend of military discipline and nursing empathy. 

"Being a cadet at CST is no different than being a nurse at a hospital. Everyone has a role, and camaraderie is key," Benedetto said. 

As these cadets march toward their futures, their dreams are as diverse as their journeys. Tjhan advises aspiring cadets, "Be physically fit, study military tactics, but most importantly, be a team player." 

The skills these SDSU’s Cadets have learned underscore the program's emphasis on producing well-rounded leaders, adept in military tactics, and equipped with the interpersonal skills vital in healthcare settings.

"Nursing cadets also receive financial assistance and have the ability to participate in unique opportunities, including the Nurse Summer Training Program which places them somewhere in the world in a military hospital,” said Sider.

The Army Nurse Corps is gaining not just skilled professionals, but a cohort with the resilience and camaraderie that will make a difference in any battlefield or hospital ward.

For more information on SDSU's ROTC Nursing Program check out their website at

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