Mission accomplished

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Texas Woman’s University graduate Caitlin Criswell decorated every inch of her mortarboard for the commencement ceremony at Kitty Magee Arena on Friday in Denton.
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Reservist earns master’s degree from TWU

Texas Woman’s University student Philip Hamby credits his wife for encouraging him to go back to school.

The 31-year-old is one of 764 undergraduates and 742 graduates who were awarded degrees during ceremonies Friday and today. Hamby graduated Friday, earning his master’s degree in nursing.

Hamby, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps before going to the University of Texas at Arlington to become a nurse, said his wife has been supportive, taking care of the couple’s three children while he worked and attended TWU.

He splits his time between Stonegate Center, a residential drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility, in Azle and a doctor’s office in Denton.

“It’s been really fulfilling to see the changes that we’re making in individuals’ lives here [at Stonegate],” he said.

About 200 men have come through the doors in the last couple of years, he said.

“Our success rate has been over 70 percent,” he said. “I’m blown away and touched by the work here.”

On top of working as a nurse, he decided he wanted to continue his military career by joining the U.S. Air Force Reserve.

His job as a 1st lieutenant in the 301st Medical Squadron in Fort Worth is to provide advanced emergency medical care for medical providers, he said.

“I was raised in a military family,” he said.

He said he decided to join the reserves because he missed the camaraderie.

Hamby has spent the last three years working toward his master’s degree.

He originally decided to become a nurse because he wanted to leave the option open to go on to medical school, plus it was a good job where he could help people, he said.

“I’ve enjoyed my work as a nurse,” he said, adding that he enjoys getting to know his patients.

Now that he’s earned his master’s, he still needs to take the board exam to become certified.

RACHEL MEHLHAFF can be reached at 940-566-6889. Her e-mail address is rmehlhaff@dentonrc.com.


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