Campus Programs Aim to Support Veterans

    UCSD announced its plans to upstart multiple new programs in preparation for the expected rise in student veterans who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Initiatives include a special orientation for student veterans, early enrollment privileges and outreach efforts to local community colleges and military bases.

    “I’ve noticed an increased interest from veterans who want to seek out educational opportunities at UC San Diego,” Student Affairs Officer Jed Schlueter said. “More current military members have also been calling, or have approached me at college fairs.”

    UCSD’s first orientation for student veterans, which took place in September, featured guest speakers from the Student Affairs, Financial Aid and Counseling and Psychological Services departments, who highlighted the opportunities available to orientees.

    “It’s essential we support our veteran students and help them find their niche on our campus,” Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Penny Rue said. “Many of our students are right out of high school, but veterans typically have much more life experience so it’s important we recognize their service and help them make the transition to UC San Diego.”

    Since last Spring Quarter, student veterans and staff from the Transfer Services, Student Affairs and Financial Aid departments, along with the six colleges, have participated in a Veterans Services Workgroup whose first initiative is to implement priority course registration for student veterans beginning this winter.

    Last year, students Erik Matson and Kenyon Ralph co-founded the Student Veteran Organization to encourage current student veterans to help incoming peers adjust to campus life. The organization meets regularly and is currently recruiting new members.

    In addition, CPS recently created a student veterans support group to provide additional emotional support for students from fellow vets.

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