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A Month of Honor and Valor at the CSU

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Erik Fallis (562) 951-4800

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(November 9, 2010) – In honor of the men and women who served their country during times of conflict, California State University campuses statewide and the CSU Chancellor’s Office will be closed for Veterans Day observance on Thursday, Nov. 11.

Many campuses and student organizations planned activities in the month of November to honor and remember our nation's veterans.  Specific scheduling and contact information can be found on campus sites.

Resources and information for current and prospective student-veterans can be found on the CSU Troops to College site.  CSU campuses take great pride in welcoming and supporting student veterans as part of the university community.  In recognition of their continuous efforts on behalf of veterans, six CSU campuses (Chico, Humboldt, Long Beach, San Bernardino, San Diego, and San Marcos) are all listed in the Military Times EDGE Best for Vets top 100 for 2010.

Below are select examples of campus veteran activities:

The California Maritime Academy Color Guard provided an Honor Guard presenting the Colors of both the United States and the United Kingdom during the Nov. 7 Observance Day Parade at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco.  During the observance, Cal Maritime's Captain Harry Bolton presented the Memorial wreath to the United Kingdom's Consul General, the Queen of England's representative at the event.  In addition, Sandy Handel, the assistant director of admissions at California Maritime Academy, spoke at a reunion of Northern California veterans of the USS Aircraft Carrier Boxer on Oct. 23.

The CSU Chico Student Veteran’s Organization and Veteran’s Education Support Team invite all current and former military personnel and all students, staff and faculty to a Nov. 10 reception and food drive honoring those on campus who have served their country.  Non-perishable food items will be donated to local food banks.  All who have served in the military are invited to wear “dog tags out” to let the campus community be aware of their service.

At CSU Dominguez Hills, the Veterans Alliance will screen the documentary Striking a Chord on Nov. 10.  The Veterans Alliance, established as a student support group for veteran students, is also planning a campaign to send care packages to troops overseas.

CSU East Bay students, faculty and staff – especially military veterans – are invited to attend the 4th annual Veterans Welcome Reception and Informational Presentation on Nov. 10.  Attendees will be able to learn about veteran benefits and services as well as campus student support services, while meeting current and former members of the military attending classes at the university.

Fresno State paid tribute to the university’s 350 veterans – students and employees – in a ceremony on Nov. 9, with music, bagpipes and a talk by a professor who served as a U.S. Marine Corps Judge Advocate General.  The Fresno State Student Veterans Organization presented the event.  The university will also have a large presence in the Fresno Veterans Day Parade on Nov. 11.

CSU Fullerton and Latino Advocates for Education Inc. paid tribute to the 50 Orange County military service members who died fighting in Iraq or Afghanistan, during a special ceremony Saturday, Nov. 6, at the 14th annual Veteran’s Day Celebration.  Families of the fallen heroes, known as Gold Star families, were recognized at the event.

Humboldt State’s Veterans Enrollment and Transition Services Office, staffed by fellow vet undergraduate and graduate students, will host Veterans Day flag raising ceremonies in front of the Library on Nov. 10.  Directly following the ceremony, the V.E.T.S. office will serve bagels and coffee free to veterans.

On Nov. 4, Cal State L.A.'s 2010 Veterans Forum presented “Re-entry and Adjustment Issues of Combat War Veterans” by University of Texas-Pan American Rehabilitation Professor Noreen Glover-Graf.  CSULA student veterans followed this presentation by sharing their college experiences as part of a panel discussion.

CSU Long Beach will hold numerous pre-Veterans Day activities on Nov. 10, starting with a VET NET Ally Seminar during which a student veteran panel will respond to questions about challenges and successes during their transition from the military.  The day of activities will culminate in a ceremony featuring patriotic music, guest speakers from the local community and a bagpiper.

Veterans Day was commemorated early at CSU Monterey Bay with the annual Fort Ord Alumni Association scholarship awards luncheon on Oct. 27.  FOAA is an organization of veterans, many of whom served at the fort before part of it became the university, dedicated to supporting CSUMB students and preserving Fort Ord's history.  FOAA this year awarded 12 $1,000 scholarships to outstanding students, many of whom have a tradition of military service in their own families.  The organization has awarded 112 scholarships over the past 14 years.

CSU Northridge has recently announced an expansion of its services for veterans that range from free counseling for those veterans affected by posttraumatic stress disorder and anxiety to financial aid and scholarships.  The campus has also chartered a Veterans Student Organization to provide both a communications and social network for veterans, and to educate other students and faculty on the needs of student veterans.

The Cal Poly Pomona Veterans Services Initiative invited the campus community to join in celebrating the contributions of veterans.  The event took place Nov. 9, and featured Liam Corley, an assistant professor of English who served last year in Afghanistan as a Navy lieutenant, and Vietnam veteran Thomas Delk, a supervisor in facilities management. Jose Sanchez, who served in the Marine Corps, spoke about his experiences as a student at Cal Poly Pomona.  The ROTC color guard also participated, as did a group from the children’s center, who presented flags to all veterans in attendance.

Sacramento State hosted the Veterans Diversity Awareness Conference on Nov. 1.  The event –open to all Sac State students, faculty and staff – fostered discussion among the participants to generate an even greater welcoming campus experience for returning veterans and their families.  Discussion topics included military life, women in the military, educational benefits, military diversity, and mental and physical health of the returning veteran and military dependents.

The Student Veterans Organization at CSU San Bernardino will hold its second annual Veterans Day commemoration service on Nov. 10.  The event will feature student veteran speakers, and a performance by the CSUSB Air Force ROTC Drill Team.  The university will provide information on programs and benefits for military veterans to streamline admission, attendance and costs, allowing veterans stationed or residing in California to strike new career paths, develop new skills or resume an interrupted education.

On Nov. 4, dozens of guests joined San Diego State as it opened the new SDSU Veterans Center today.  Located on the northwest corner of Student Services, the expanded center features a variety of services and offices geared towards students with military backgrounds, including veterans, active-duty personnel, reservists and military dependents.  Currently, the university serves more than 1,000 veteran, active-duty and reservist students and about 600 military dependents.  On Oct. 15, SDSU remembered fallen Aztecs during an annual War Memorial Ceremony preceded by an all-night vigil organized by student volunteers.

San Francisco State holds the official grand opening of its new Veterans Services Center on Wednesday, Nov. 10.  The new offices housed within the University's Career Center will offer a range of services for veterans and dependents, including pre-admissions counseling, educational benefits assistance and other transitional concerns.  Conveniently located in the Student Services Building, the center will open for service from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.

To mark Veterans Day, San José State republished the writings of student veteran Aimee McLendon, originally published in the Spartan Daily on Oct. 20.  When Aimee McLendon set out to write about SJSU students who are combat veterans, she encountered resistance.  People she contacted were concerned their comments would be used to portray them in a bad light, or taken out of context.  A veteran herself, McLendon proved to be a careful listener and writer.

CSU San Marcos is hosting multiple community events in honor of Veterans Day.  Activities began when the campus Veterans Center hosted its annual Veterans Day celebration and reception on Nov. 9.  The campus also hosts Honoring Our Veterans, an evening event featuring the second annual Operation Art exhibit, followed by a lecture from U.S. Navy Psychiatrist Captain Paul S. Hammer, MD.  To conclude the activities, the ASI Women’s Center on Nov. 10 will present the award-winning documentary film Lioness, which chronicles the lives of female combat veterans.

On Nov. 10, CSU Stanislaus will host its annual Troops to College event.  The event is in honor of veterans from the campus community and surrounding area.  It includes a flag-raising ceremony, Patriot Guard Riders (motorcycles) and an outside reception where students, young vets and older vets mingle.  There will be a banner and cards available for people to sign. These will be sent to local troops who are currently serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.

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About the California State University
The California State University is the largest system of senior higher education in the country, with 23 campuses, approximately 433,000 students year round and 44,000 faculty and staff. Since the system was created in 1961, it has awarded nearly 2.5 million degrees, about 90,000 annually. The CSU is renowned for the quality of its teaching and for the job-ready graduates it produces. A recent economic report found that the CSU supports more than 150,000 jobs statewide, annually. The engine driving job creation is more than $17 billion in economic activity that directly results from CSU-related spending that generates $5.43 for every dollar the state invests. The mission of the CSU is to provide high-quality, affordable education to meet the ever-changing needs of the people of California. With its commitment to excellence, diversity and innovation, the CSU is the university system that is working for California.

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