By Cmdr. Typhanie Kinder, MD, Director of Naval Medical Modeling and Simulation Training, Navy Medicine Education Training Command
Words that ring so poignant;
The year is 1976. It is a moment in time that I will forever remember. A five year old girl looked up at the Dad she adored to hear him say, “Women can go to the Academies now.” Now, did I truly understand his words or their significance? No, I did not. However, I distinctly remember feeling that this moment was important for both of us…
It’s now 1989. I am valedictorian of my little high school, a big fish in a little puddle, but feeling ‘on top of the world.’ I am just 18 years old and have been selected for admission to not one, not two, but all three military academies – Choices. My paternal lineage was Army all the way back to the earliest wars of our country. Naturally, I chose West Point – Then, the trip, an economy whirlwind trip to visit all three service academies in the dead of winter – then, the epiphany. I was a best fit for the Navy, having grown up in California with an early lifetime of experiences at Naval Station Point Mugu and Port Hueneme – Decision made. Polite declination letter to West Point, and a big ‘YES’ to USNA!
Fast forward to 1993. I am a proud graduate of the United States Naval Academy. It was tough, but character building. Summers spent embedded with the Fleet and the Corps, seeing more of the world than I had ever seen. Now, I was one of the few fortunate USNA graduates service selected to the medical corps. I will be a doctor. I will have the once in a lifetime opportunity to go to Tulane Medical School, the oldest and among the most prestigious medical schools in the South, and become the doctor I have always aspired to be by virtue of an HPSP scholarship.
It’s 1998 and I am a proud graduate of Tulane Medical School and a physician in my own right. I am back in the Navy that is synonymous with all of my adult life. I complete my housestaff training at Bethesda Naval Hospital and Naval Medical Center San Diego. I have a few brief interludes as a GMO where my experiences as a physician were broad and wide for a newly minted doctor, even diagnosed malaria INCONUS and presented the case to the head of Navy Medicine’s malaria program as a green LT.
Tours followed as a staff internist INCONUS and OCONUS, and an aspiration to become more by becoming a full-fledged sub-specialist and a Navy gastroenterologist.
Challenge, Opportunity, and Service – These words define the honor of my career in the Navy. Now, as I approach the twilight years, another opportunity to touch and influence more than just myself has presented itself by joining the Navy Medicine Education Training Command (NMETC) team. As Director of Naval Medical Modeling and Simulation Training (NMMAST), my team and I are afforded the awesome privilege to mold, guide, and mentor the present and future direction of Navy medical training through medical modeling and simulation training assets that NMETC and NMMAST are cultivating to meet and engage the newest Navy generations-to-be. It has been an honor and a privilege and a path I am proud to have traveled.
I’m Cmdr. Typhanie Kinder. I am Navy Medicine.