Marsha Four: Bringing humanity to veteran transitions through mentoring

On National Nurse’s Day, BPW Foundation is proud to honor and recognize the nurses who give so much of themselves personally and professionally to care for all of us. Thank you! We are also pleased to recognize Marsha Four, BPW Foundation Women Joining Forces Advisory Council Member and current National Vice President of Vietnam Veterans of America, who has dedicated her life to this profession and to serving our country.

marsha fourMarsha Four is a Vietnam in- country veteran who served on active duty with the Army Nurse Corps from 1967 to 1970. Ms. Four has been actively involved in veterans’ issues on a local, regional and national level for many years. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Vietnam Veterans of America. Marsha has had several mentors throughout her life, and has spoken about her experiences to help other women as they transition from military to civilian life. She has also dedicated her professional life to working with veterans. She recently shared the following words of encouragement for women who have served our country and may be struggling with their career transition.

A Note from Marsha-

“At the end of my days, I will look upon my military nursing experience as the most remarkable event in my life. One I will celebrate not only because it brought me tremendous personal satisfaction. I contributed to something much bigger than myself. What we accomplish in our role of nursing has and will ultimately impact hundreds of thousands of service members and their families far into the future. I’m certain most of you feel the same way.

As I transitioned from the military I found myself floundering a bit; attempting to reach the goals I had set for myself. In part this may have been because I was entering a world which had changed so much since I left it …the civilian world. In some ways nursing was not exactly the same. I needed to adjust and “suck it up”. I knew I needed to connect with others who had waded through this separation complex. And then I was blessed with meeting other women veterans, many of them nurses who had served in Vietnam. They had given support to each other and were now prepared to offer that support to me. I found them and many of them remain my friends to this day. They were strong role models that influenced, informed, and educated me to the ways of the world in which I now lived. They helped me make logical and balanced decisions. They were my mentors, my stronghold, on some days my cheer leader, and on other days my lifeline.

I have come to realize that being a mentor is to offer a special gift of selflessness in support of another on the path to a successful and satisfying life. Remember that a mentor brings much to the table. They boost your spirits, provide you food for thought, turn you on to resources, offer pearls of wisdom, or simply share a past experience that makes you laugh together. Mentorship programs bring a piece of humanity to life and career transitions. The One-on-one mentor connection creates a caring and strong personalization through the commitment of those who have chosen to dedicate their lives to others. Don’t be afraid to make these connections for yourself – they are life changing.”

Marsha Four, WJF Advisory Council Member
National Vice President
Vietnam Veterans of America


2010 INAUGURAL SUMMIT VIDEO  [su_youtube_advanced url=”” width=”360″ height=”320″]