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A meeting in the UMC Glenn Miller Ballroom on Friday honored the services of veterans in the CU community and highlighted CU’s veterans support resources.
About 650 student veterans and 250 faculty veterans call CU their home, said Michael Roberts, program manager of the Veteran Services office at CU.
Michael Dakduk, executive director of the national organization, Student Veterans of America, spoke to the public during the Veterans Day Ceremony on Friday about CU’s efforts to support student veterans.
In his speech, Dakduk laid out five goals that he hopes the Student Veterans of America will accomplish, and have accomplished, in their few years as an organization.
These goals include: increasing support for student veterans, reaching out to alumni of all ages who value education, conducting their own research on the success of student veterans, collecting the voice of all veterans and investing in partnerships to better help student veterans during and after college.
“We have started doing this in the four and a half years that we have existed,” Dakduk said.
Partnerships include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Google.
According to the Department of Defense, many veterans will make the transition from soldier to student after serving in the military.
“Over the next 5 years, over 1 million veterans will make that transition,” Dakduk said. “It will be important for the Student Veterans of America to support them all.”
Colorado Congressman Jared Polis could not attend the event, but a representative was there to read a few words from him.
“I want to congratulate [CU] on the opening of the Student Veteran Center on campus,” Polis said. “It is clear that the University of Colorado at Boulder is at the forefront of that effort.”
Chancellor DiStefano wants to make sure that CU is there for its veterans.
“We take this time to acknowledge and express gratitude for the sacrifices of those still serving and those who have served so gallantly and selflessly in our armed forces,” DiStefano said in a university news release. “The University of Colorado Boulder joins the nation on [Veterans Day] our country has set aside to honor our veterans and acknowledge the legacy of their steadfast defense of our American ideals, principles and liberties.”
Connor Weisser, an 18-year-old freshman MCD biology major, said that Veterans day is a time to recognize the accomplishments of service men and women in the CU community.
“This is my first year at CU, and learning about the ways CU supports its veterans is awesome,” Weisser said. “Any American should be proud of these efforts.”
Isaac Cutton, an 18-year-old freshman business major, agrees that CU’s effort in helping veterans is key.
“Veterans Day is very important,” Cutton said. “The week-long events at CU is a great gesture in support of our student and faculty veterans.”
“The Welcome,” an award-winning documentary that offers a “fiercely intimate view of life after war: the fear, anger and isolation of post-traumatic stress that affects vets and family members alike,” will have a public showing Nov. 14, from 6-9 p.m. in Old Main Chapel as part of Veterans Week events.
The annual veterans pre-game party takes place Nov. 17 at 9 a.m. in the UMC Glenn Miller Ballroom. This event honors CU’s military families, as well as members of the military across the Front Range community.
To learn more about the Student Veterans Center, located in C4C S482, contact their office at 303-492-7322, or visit http://veterans.colorado.edu/.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Zachary Cook at Zachary.firstname.lastname@example.org.