National Programs that Support Student Veterans

There are many different programs, groups, and organizations that support student veterans. The ones here are nationally recognized, but they definitely aren’t the only ones out there. Do you know of one or work with one? Add it to the comments!

The first student veteran organizations were formed after World War II when veterans began attending college, but many of these groups shrunk as that generation moved on (Summerlot et al., 2009). the first known organization was the American Veterans Committee (Summerlot et al., 2009). Organizations help veterans connect with others with military backgrounds, provide a safe space, and can assist with creating change on campus (Summerlot et al., 2009).

Student Veterans of America (SVA) was formed in the Spring of 2007 (Summerlot et al., 2009). This was after veterans from Operation Eduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom returned home (Our Story). It began as student veterans on a campus to provide support for one another, and in 2008 different groups came together to form the national organization (Our Story). They became officially incorporated in 2008 and there are now over 950 individual chapters and partners (Our Story). SVA supports chapters through leadership training, grants, advocating for support services on campuses, and they also offer support for student veterans who have graduated (What We Do).

Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) is a group of about 1900 accredited colleges and universities that offer flexibil policies to help servicemembers and their families complete degree programs (SOC Consortium: Providing, 2014). The group was formed in 1972 (Servicemembers Opportunities Colleges, 2015) and institutions utilize ACE’s guidelines for transferring military credit (SOC Consortium: Providing, 2014).

Fulfilling Their Dream is a program where NASPA and ACE work together to find a mentor for student veterans at their chosen college or university (DiRamio & Spires, 2009). Support begins while the veterans is hospitalized with an ACE Academic Advisor (DiRamio & Spires, 2009). These Academic Advisors help veterans find appropriate programs and institutions to best fit the needs and interests of the individual veteran (DiRamio & Spires, 2009). NASPA and ACE ask for volunteers from a campus to act as a mentor to the veteran (DiRamio & Spires, 2009). These mentors provide information about campus, help with the transition to college campus, provide referrals and recommendations regarding campus resources (DiRamio & Spires, 2009).

“Operation College Promise (OCP) is a national policy, research and education program based in Trenton, New Jersey, which supports the transition and postsecondary advancement of our nation's veterans.” (Operation Promise for Servicemembers). OCP was founded by the New Jersey Association of state Colleges and Universities in 2008 (Operation Promise for Servicemembers). They developed the first resource manual for veterans’ service providers and a Certificate for Veterans’ Service Providers (Operation Promise for Servicemembers). OCP works with the New Jersey Legislature to create legislation that involves veterans (Operation Promise for Servicemembers).

Works Cited

DiRamio, D., & Spires, M. (2009). Partnering to assist disabled veterans in transition. New Directions For Student Services. In R. Ackerman, & D. DiRamio, Creating a veteran-friendly campus: Strategies for transition and success (New Directions for Student Services No. 126, pp. 81-88). San Fransisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Summerlot, J., Green, S., & Parker, D. (2009). Student veterans organizations. New Directions For Student Services. In R. Ackerman, & D. DiRamio, Creating a veteran-friendly campus: Strategies for transition and success (New Directions for Student Services No. 126, pp. 71-79). San Fransisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Our Story. (n.d.) Retrieved from: http://studentveterans.org/index.php/aboutus/history

Operation Promise for Servicemembers. (n.d.). Retrieved from:http://www.operationpromiseforservicemembers.com/

What We Do. (n.d.) Retrieved from: http://studentveterans.org/index.php/what-we-do.

SOC Consortium: Providing Educational Opportunities for Servicemembers. (2014, November 21). Retrieved: from http://www.soc.aascu.org/socconsortium/.

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