Advice 4 joinin navy as medical corpsman - page 2

I am going to take my ASVAB in the morning. I want to become a doctor when i get out of the navy. Is medical Corpsman the best route to go? I want to train hard and work for what I get. but i also... Read More

  1. by   zenman
    I went the Army medic route in 1971 (Ft. Sam Houston). Finished as a 91C. Took the Texas LPN boards, then challenged the California RN boards and passed so actually became an RN before officially going to nursing school. After getting by BSN, I had to take state boards again in Louisiana. Actually did better on the first set of boards! I think the Army has changed the medic program; I'll go look on their website. How long is the Navy program? Our 91C program was 40 weeks. This was after 8 weeks for 91A and OJT time for 91B.
    Last edit by zenman on Jul 8, '04
  2. by   Vici358
    Hi... I'm going to bootcamp soon and I'm having second thoughts. I'm not sure if HM Corpsman is going to be good for my future. How was your experience as being one? Is it true that we can get a license on it if we put enough hours in our job. That's what my recruiter told me and I'm not sure whether it is the truth or not. He said you have to apply for some program for it in the Navy. Also I was wondering if being a HM corpsman helped you after you have left the service. In civilian life I mean. What do female corpsman do?? Did you get any advantage from it???? Thank soo much.. Please reply ASAP because I have 2 weeks left before I make the decision of the 5 years of my life... THANK you again.
  3. by   kea6783
    Nice to hear everyone's opinion, especially since I was told once that corpsmen can only be MEN.. and that by a recruiter! Are we on the same page... a corpsmn is a 'medic' right.. because in that case, I don't see where the "nursing assistant" comparison came into play. My brother, usmc, just got back from iraq and his navy corpsman was keeping up with standard issue supplies plus his medical gear, and doing way more than a nursing assistant would.

    just my two cents.
  4. by   CHATSDALE
    lpn and lvn are terms used by different states...same level of training and duties..if you were in texas you would be a lvn if you moved to florida you would be referred to lpn

    op should consider going to school that has rotc..military would pick up a lot of costs and would be required to work in military for a certain about of time...unsure just how much

    i know a nurse who went to u of arkansas and is now a major
    also a md who after graduation repaid military and she is now a civilian md..don't know exactly how she went about this
    you have a lot options...hope you enjoy your career
  5. by   ldshaw
    Hospital corspman getting out of the Navy will find that it is not all that great. If you live in California (which I do), you can challange the LVN board and get your license. Most states only let you become CNAs. If you know any corpsman, you know that we do FAR more than a CNA. You do not get your license in the military, unless you challange the LVN board in California while you are active. It is not automatic. The recruiter lied to you. Funny how they can do that. It is worth every minute to be an HM. My eleven years were the most valuable to my career now in nursing.

  6. by   crazylilkelly
    I was in the NAVY (not an HM) & just wanted to say one thing. You should be aware that being an HM doesn't mean you'll only be on a ship or in a hospital. I was told by an HM I knew that a large portion of HMs go to the marines. It makes sense, they're part of the NAVY & need HMs desperately. They also get placed with Seabee (construction) battalions (I was a builder with the seabees----NMCB 5). If you get placed w/ a Seabee or Marine battalion you'll DEFINITELY be doing field training (wear cammies, play war games, carry weapons, sleep in tents, eat MREs etc etc etc). Basically you will be trained to survive as a soldier. I am currently in the NAVY reserves & large portion of HMs get sent to Iraq. People are always making jokes about how relieved they're not HMs b/c they'd be activated for war in a heartbeat.
    I'm not trying to scare you or anything but just want to inform you on the possible outcomes of becoming an HM. Personally, I think being an HM w/ the marines and bees is very very honorable. Especially in a wartime situation b/c you have such an impact on your shipmates lives. I always hear marines say that a corpsman is their best friend (as well as a seabee!).Also, I'm not certain but I think if you go to certain C schools you'll be less likely to get a billet in the battalion. Good luck with everything! God bless you & all who serve
    PS- Definitely agreed-------HMs do wwwwwwaaaaaaayyyyyy more than CNAs! It kind of upset me when I heard that in the civilian world they're on par w/ CNAs. I mean come on, HMs go to school for months upon months, even yrs & CNAs can be certified in about a month (depending on the program).
    Last edit by crazylilkelly on Apr 14, '05
  7. by   kaizenro
    My advice is to talk to the Officer Recruiter. He or she can tell you about going to school full-time receiving E-3 pay. And your time in school counts as AD (active duty) time. Win-win IMO.

    Also, depending on where you are and/or if the ship/unit is small enough, you can be expected to do many more jobs. Pharmacy, X-Rays, Running/Reading Labs, Preventive med, etc.; even if you don't have the NEC (Navy Enlisted Classifier) under your name.

    If you really want a strong medical foundation, danger be damned, HM is the way to go. (and don't try to get stationed at a hospital too long, you're much more restricted on things you can do there/ hospital dr's and civilian nurses get jealous) If you want to become a dr ASAP, go to Medical School.

    Hope this helps.
    I was a corpsman for a little over 12 years and after a 8 yr hiatus from healthcare, am getting ready to graduate from a LPN program. LPN and LVNs are taught the same material and the differences can vary significantly as per scope of practice outlined by the state nursing board.

    I should have challanged the LVN exam from CA when I got out, but didn't think I wanted to do pt care again.
  9. by   Gennaver
    I was a corpsman for a little over 12 years and after a 8 yr hiatus from healthcare, am getting ready to graduate from a LPN program. LPN and LVNs are taught the same material and the differences can vary significantly as per scope of practice outlined by the state nursing board.

    I should have challanged the LVN exam from CA when I got out, but didn't think I wanted to do pt care again.
    piggyback replying to say:
    Goodness, now we've got adverts "in" our posts?
  10. by   Studylots34
    Hi, I've just joined as an HM. None of my recruiters have been able to tell me the exact options I have for C-school, and I was wondering if you could tell me what some or all of them are, seeing that you did it. I feel kind of dumb for asking, but it feels like my sources are very limited to this subject!
    Thanks you,
  11. by   BuckeyeInIndy
    i am a HN in the navy right now. i'm getting ready to get out and move to indiana. I was wondering what would be the fastest way for me to get my RN. Also how fast could i turn my Corpsman experience into a LPN certification, if at all.
  12. by   PMFB-RN
    Quote from former_hm2_fmf
    i know this thread has been dead a few months but thought i would like to do a little give and take in the area of information.

    give: i was a navy corpsman for a bit over 9 years. . . well, 9 years 3 months and 11 days according to my dd 214 (discharge papers) but who is ever counting? i feel comparing a corpsman to a nursing assistant can be applied to very few cases. most corpsman can do much more than cna's and lpn/lon's and some even more than rn's. hospital corpsman a-school (go here for more info: is only 14 weeks long and as all navy schools has an accelerated curriculum. the school will teach you to perform basic bedside care in an inpatient setting: am/pm care, medications administration, vitals signs, how to draw blood, give shots, iv's, how to write nursing notes and to familiarize the student with medical terminology. on the outpatient side you are taught an emt course that is good enough to get you an emt-b cert in the civilian sector and american heart association cpr for the health care provider.

    as mentioned above in an earlier post, after completing hospital corpsman a-school you pretty much have three options 1) go to your first duty stations depending on what is available 2) go to a hospital corpsman c-school (advanced training more info go here: 3) or go to field medical service school (technically a c-school but referred to as one infrequently more info go here:

    take: i have been out on the navy since november 2002 having sworn that i have given up patient care for good. however after dabbling in this and that i just can not deny my urge to get back into patient care. i am just not comfortable in the business or information technology fields. i miss the health care setting. so here go my questions:

    california is a state the corpsman can challenge the lvn/lpn boards, does anyone know of any other states and their home pages for requirements?

    is there any difference between a lpn and lvn?

    any help given would be appreciated.
    *** i was an army medic rather than an navy corpsman but i challenged the lvn boards in california and passed first time not problem. there is no difference between lvn and lpn. just different names for the same thing. ca & tx call them lvns and other states call them lpns.
    for those who are interested in becoming an rn here is the way i became an rn and you former medics and corpsmen can do it too.
    challenge the lvn boards in ca and after you have your lvn license come here to wisconsin and enter one of our technical colleges. the wi technical college s (16 of them) offer lpn to rn in one year or less. i had zero college credit to my name, just my army training and my lpn lcense and i became an rn with an associates degree in nursing and a licensed rn in only two semesters. i clept lot's of classes (with zero study time) and passed. i had a 16 credit course load for those two semesters and had no trouble.
    i started school in aug 2005 and graduated in may of 2006 with an adn-rn. i now work in a level i surgical/trauma icu and make $69k/year. you medics and corpsmen can do it too. if you have any questions feel free to ask or pm me.
  13. by   GeorgiaBoy61
    Hello all -

    I am an RN, and want to serve in the military. I am exploring serving as a DCO in either the army or the navy. However, my real dream is to be a corpsmen, and go out with the grunts in FMF. My problem is that I am overage (I am in my mid-40s), well past the cutoff age of 39 for USNR corpsmen. Please understand that I have nothing against being a nurse, it is just that I am a hard-charger and want to get my feet dirty. I understand that getting an age waiver is an uphill fight, but is it possible. given that the FMF still needs corpsmen badly?

    I have spoken with enlisted recruiters who say they'd love to sign me up, but cannot. There must be someone higher up in the food chain who can render a verdict on this. I know that the military runs on a mountain of paper and red tape, but I also know that there is a waiver for darn near anything if you know who to ask for help.

    I have no illusions about this. However, I just read that the military is allowing amputees to stay on duty. These heroes deserve every break in the world, I agree, but by what logic can an amputee be fit for service but not a somewhat older but very fit man with all of his limbs?

    A pal of mine - a retired army nurse - tells me that the age cutoff used to be 44? True or false? If true, why the change?

    Anyone with input please feel free to contact me at