Down a somewhat narrow corridor with florescent lighting, outdated carpet with strange patterns, and a peculiar, musty smell, sits a great treasure. At the end of the hall on the left is the TWU Veterans Center.
When you enter, the rooms feel warm and cozy. You find yourself in a friendly atmosphere that is filled with tidy tables, computers, printers, coffee and snacks. Just outside the door is a wealth of resources for veterans. Pamphlets and announcements for activities fill the rack. Right inside the door hangs a letter from a seven-year old girl, where she expresses her thankfulness for our troops. She has drawn an American flag and hearts around the page.
The Veterans Center is located in Jones Hall, rooms 106 and 107. Established exclusively for student veterans, Assistant Director of Veteran and Non-Traditional Student Services, Brittanie Romine said: “It’s a place for student veterans to hang out, do homework and get to know each other.” The most important thing she says, is that it helps student veterans get connected on campus. It is also used as a meeting place; a place these students can call their own. With hundreds of veterans on campus, the center is a much needed resource. Completed in the summer of 2014. Romine stated: “Our campus does such a great job supporting our student veterans and this is just one way. If you know a student veteran, send them here.”
President of the Student Veterans Association (SVA), Cameron McGuffin said: “It’s been amazing. There are a lot of different schools out there and they will kind of lose you in the system. For a small school like this, knowing where the resources are, it’s a great benefit. Not just for my personal success, but for others as well.” He explains that resources like the veterans center are one of the major reasons that he chose to attend TWU. He said it can sometimes be hard for veterans to adjust to the lack of structure and the new responsibility for themselves but resources like this help.
The university offers many different ways to support and help student veterans get involved. One of these programs is called “Vet Zone.” Vet Zone provides the opportunity for faculty and staff to receive training in the best ways to support our veteran and military-affiliated students. When faculty and staff have completed the program, they display a special symbol that signifies that they are equipped to offer support.
If you are, or you know, a veteran that could benefit from resources like these, contact Romine or Veteran Education Benefits Certifying Official, Alex Alvarado.