In 1969, MEDEX Northwest was founded to bring highly trained returning military veterans into the US workforce and healthcare field. Indeed, the first four classes of MEDEX students brought military experience with them into the classroom. Today, MEDEX Northwest remains true to its military roots with over 20% of its students coming from some branch of service. Here are some of their stories.

“I Guess It All Worked Out”: An Interview with PA Pioneer Robert Woodruff, PA-C (MEDEX Seattle Class 1)

Robert Woodruff, PA-C, is a member of MEDEX Seattle Class 1 (1969), MEDEX Northwest’s first graduating class, and has remained a good friend and supporter of MEDEX Northwest in the 55 years since. Like virtually all of his Class 1 classmates, Bob served in the Vietnam war. He was an [...]

Veterans Day 2023: The Journey

Since 1969 and the graduation of Seattle Class 1 – a group of 12 comprised entirely of military veterans – MEDEX Northwest has sought out military veterans to join our ranks, and today is no exception. In recognition of 2023 Veterans Day, we invited current MEDEX students with military backgrounds [...]

A Life of Service

In recognition of Veterans Day, we reached out to our current military students to share stories of their journeys in the military, and from serving in the military to serving as PAs. These are the ones they shared.

MEDEX, the Military and Becoming a PA

MEDEX Northwest and the United States Armed Forces are tied at the hip historically—all fourteen members of MEDEX’s inaugural class, Seattle Class 1 (1969), were former Vietnam-era medics or corpsmen in search of a way to put their hard-earned medical knowledge and experience to work in a civilian setting. And [...]

Driven By Inspiration

Since 2016, the Steven Turnipseed, PA-C Veterans Award has been given to MEDEX graduates in recognition of their service to country, class and community. Two of this year’s recipients, Robin Morris of Anchorage Class 10 and Coty Holm of Spokane Class 22, speak about what (and who) motivated them to [...]

Without Them, I Wouldn’t Be Here

After thirteen years in the US Navy and reserves as a medical corpsman, Lena Redkina of MEDEX Seattle Class 50 was sworn in as a lieutenant junior grade at the completion of her PA studies. Now, she’s off on a duty assignment to Japan with the 3rd Marine Logistics Group. [...]

A Venerable Legacy of Veterans as PAs

In 1969 MEDEX Northwest was founded in order to facilitate trained military veterans into civilian healthcare. Today this goal remains as important as ever with 19% of the 2018 incoming class representing veterans. Two of these individuals—Coty Holm and Anna Zakharova—tell the stories about their path to becoming a PA.

Knowing What Right Looks Like

Paul Hastings of MEDEX Seattle Class 51 spent over seven and a half years in the US Army as a Special Forces combat diver and medic. His time in Afghanistan and throughout Asia has prepared him for this new chapter, a transition from the “sticks and rags” medicine of war [...]

Running Towards The Problem

Andrew Merrick spent four years in the US Navy in damage control aboard the destroyer Spruance DD963. Essentially a firefighter, he was able to parlay the first responder aspect of that duty into the civilian world upon discharge. Now Andrew is a didactic year student in MEDEX Anchorage Class 8, [...]

It Makes You Really, Truly Love Medicine

With a combined experience of 13 years as a US Navy corpsman, Al Noriega developed a civilian career as medical examiner investigator. His military medical training informed this second career, but the stressors of that job carried an expiration date. Now, at age 47, Al is embarking on his third [...]