NSU sees Veterans Affairs office shakeup

A memorandum of understanding occurred among Gov. John Bel Edwards’ office, the Louisiana Board of Veterans and the Louisiana Board of Regents to place a Louisiana Vet Corp member on each campus in the state of Louisiana.

The Vet Corp is a peer-based program which establishes veterans’ programs on college campuses in Louisiana. A member of Vet Corp will be hired and will serve up to 30 hours per week on special projects, outreach and direct contact to student veterans.

“The Louisiana Vet Corp member will be recruited from the local community and have knowledge of our university and geographical region,” said Dr. Vickie Gentry, Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

The program will work closely with Northwestern State University’s current Veteran Affairs, but it will serve a different purpose.

Vet Corp will be housed in the Veterans Affairs office of the Student Services Center.

Gentry believes by offering this program, NSU will increase awareness of academic programs and services offered to veterans and their families.

“The Louisiana Vet Corp member will likely create a Veteran’s Interest Group and will engage in counseling veterans in admission, advising, registration, career services and professional development,” Gentry said.

She said the member will also monitor enrollment, persistence and completion of a degree while assisting veterans as they transition from military service to civilian life.

President Chris Maggio called this new program “exciting” because it will give NSU an opportunity to work closely with their veteran students.

“We always hold our veterans to high esteem,” Maggio said. “This gives us an area where we can really focus on our veterans and our veterans’ services.”

“I am very excited about this project, and I’m hopeful that it will improve support for our students who have served and continue to serve our country,” said Frances Conine, Dean of Students.

The new office will open August of 2019. Gentry said it will include office space, computers, telephones and a private meeting area for the Louisiana Vet Corp member. It will be located in the Registrar’s Office on the third floor of the Student Services Center.

Maina Ibn-Mohammed

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