Our curriculum incorporates more than 700 hours of additional military-unique education and training seen nowhere else in U.S. health sciences universities. Military-relevant courses are created from past experiences, are relevant to present needs, and are responsive to future contingencies. These courses, offered by us and other agencies, prepare USU graduates to be better clinicians, while maintaining the readiness requirements of the uniformed services.


The USU Readiness Training Program teaches four kinds of readiness: clinical readiness, or the ability to perform healthcare duties normally; operational readiness, preparation for work on deployment away from comfortable surroundings and readily available tools; physical readiness, being in shape to handle the stresses of working in a deployed environment; and emotional readiness, resiliency in the face of emotional stresses that come with taking care of injured on the battlefield.

The program is divided into four components: the Military Mountain Medicine course, Cold Weather Mountain course, Avalanche 1 training, and the Dive Medicine course.


The Military Mountain Medicine course (M3C) is conducted at either Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Mount Rainier, Wash., and Camp Ethan Allen in Jericho, Vt. M3C is offered four times each year (twice in Vermont, twice in Washington). These courses are 10 days each and are designed to provide extensive baseline knowledge in mountain medicine. The course is designed with classroom and hands-on exercises that integrate operational medicine with tactical skills like mountaineering, map reading, avalanche basics, patient transport and more. Practical training experiences are conducted in a wilderness setting.

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The Cold Weather Medicine and Avalanche 1 courses are conducted at the Army Mountain Warfare School at Camp Ethan Allen, Jericho, Vt. The courses are taught together over 10 days and are offered two times a year for those who have completed M3C. These courses are designed to provide advanced cold weather and mountain training with an emphasis in casualty care and evacuation within the austere environment. The curriculum includes an introduction to avalanche terrain and navigations, snow pits, casualty care, patient packaging and transport and high-angle rescue. This training is conducted via hands-on exercises.

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The Dive Medicine course is conducted in the Florida Keys. This 10-day course is designed to introduce the learner to dive and marine medicine as well as water rescue. The training includes didactic and practical exercises to enhance the learner’s ability to medically perform in the austere environment. The learner will be able to diagnose, treat and prevent conditions, and rescue victims that have willingly or accidently entered into a body of water. Students become open water, advanced open water and water rescue dive certified.

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Conducted by the Maryland-based U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Disease (USAMRIID) and U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Chemical Defense (USAMRICD), this six-day course for Medical Corps and Nurse Corps officers provides extensive training on biological and chemical weapons programs used by terrorists both in the United States and abroad. Students learn how to recognize biological or chemical attacks, how to activate the appropriate agencies and personnel to investigate the event, how to treat these types of casualties, and how to prevent the spread of disease in the wake of such as attack.


The 10-day course, conducted at the U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine (USAFSAM) at Wright Patterson AFB, Ohio, is designed to prepare military medical personnel to meet the wartime and peacetime missions of caring for critically ill and injured patients in the aeromedical evacuation environment. The Critical Care Air Transport Initial Course enhances the student’s current skills and knowledge to help produce teams of physicians, nurses, and respiratory technicians who are ready to support the military’s global engagement mission. During the course, students receive an introduction to the aeromedical evacuation doctrine and environment, altitude physiology, familiarization training with aeromedical evacuation aircraft and equipment, and concepts of critical care transport. Students also receive an in-depth overview of the CCATT mission, equipment, and clinical practice guidelines that will be used through the use of high fidelity human simulation scenarios.


This 12-day clinical rotation at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany offers students further insights into the en-route care and Joint Trauma System. Working with the Trauma Program Manager for three combatant commands, students build on prior course work in trauma and en-route care and explore new concepts regarding combat casualty care, inter- and intra-theater patient movement, care coordination, operational virtual health, and leadership. This experience further prepares the student for clinical and leadership roles in future austere, deployed, or humanitarian settings.