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Nurses and military personnel have a lot in common, including a strong sense of duty and purpose in serving others.

That connection has long been recognized by 40 & 8, a nonprofit of U.S. veterans committed to charitable and patriotic efforts. The group has supported nurses in training nationally with scholarships for more than 80 years.

Two University of Wisconsin Oshkosh traditional BSN (bachelor’s of science in nursing) students who possess deep commitments to their future professions as well as to their country have been awarded scholarships from the 40 & 8 local chapter, known as Voiture 751 Winnebago County.

At a dinner earlier this fall, Emma Arent, a junior from Appleton, and Erin Lindemann, a senior from Milwaukee, received modest scholarships and special plaques from James M. Hoyman, the Voiture 751’s chef de gare (a role similar to a commander).

“It’s not enough—just a little something to encourage them,” Hoyman said.

Applicants were evaluated on their nursing career plans and their thoughts on patriotism; preference was given to those with military experience or who come from military families.

Arent and Lindemann impressed the members of Voiture 751 on all accounts.

“As I grew up, it was evident that my values aligned with many of the core values of nursing. When others faced harm, I wanted to help. When I saw someone hurt, I tried to find a way to ease the pain. When my family and friends needed support, I gave them a safe environment. I have always had a passion to pursue nursing and nurture and care for people,” said Arent, who has been a certified nursing assistant since age 16.

A sense of patriotism also was instilled in her throughout childhood.

“For me, each day I honor my grandfather who dedicated his time to serve and continues to show his respect and devotion to this country,” Arent said.

“Although our country is not perfect, patriotism means striving to be the best that we can. Honoring those who are actively fighting or retired, living or dead, and demonstrating respect to those people each day. In my family, we continue to support my grandfather each year as he marches in the Memorial Day and Labor Day parades in Little Chute. We take family photos to remember him and his fight and pride for our country.”

Lindemann also values the service her grandfather, father, brother and uncles have all given to the U.S. armed forces.

“Patriotism to me means sacrifice, devotion and love for one’s country,” she said. “Seeing the effects the military has had on my brother and father, it is hard not to admire the obstacles they endured during their time serving. I have the utmost respect for the sacrifices they have both made for not only our family but their country,” she said.

Lindemann is now pouring that family commitment to service into her studies as she looks forward to a career as a trauma nurse.

“I truly appreciate caring for people and aiding them back to health, being there for the patient and families at their most vulnerable times, and lastly, comforting them in their last moments of life,” she said.

Arent and Lindemann are grateful for the scholarship and for the opportunity to meet with members of the local 40 & 8.

“The scholarship dinner allowed me to invite my grandpa … and allowed him to see my dedication towards school as he has supported me throughout my whole life. It showed how not only dedicated I am to school but also to giving back to other people who support me,” Arent said.

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