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Veteran Resource And Support Center

Stephanie Cannon '06 August 15, 2013 1:28 PM

By Trey Bodwin ’13

After seven decades and eight name changes, one thing remains the same at Texas A&M University’s Veteran Resource & Support Center—an unwavering commitment to making Texas A&M a welcoming academic home for military dependents and student veterans.

In 1946, the Veterans Advisory Service Office was established to assist ex-servicemen and women throughout their college experience. Sixty-seven years later, the VRSC continues to serve veteran students and their families by identifying and developing resources at Texas A&M.

“The VSRC is designed to help veterans transition into Texas A&M by enhancing their educational experience and preparing them for the workforce as future Aggie leaders,” said VRSC Director Col. Jerry Smith ’82, USMC (Ret.).

Texas A&M is home to at least 600 student veterans and about 1,500 students who receive military-related educational benefits. Of those, more than 2,000 benefit from VRSC resources.

The Association of Former Students has supported these resources through VRSC programs such as Vet-Connect, a program geared toward advising veterans during their transition from the military to college. Aggie Ring scholarships for veteran students are also made possible by donors to The Association’s Annual Fund.

“I view our center’s mission as another way to continue that special Spirit of Aggieland,” said Smith, who served 30 years as a Marine Corps artillery officer after being commissioned as a second lieutenant through the Naval ROTC Program at Texas A&M. He received his bachelor’s degree in political science.

He has served as chairperson of the Texas A&M Troops to College Committee, advisor to the Aggie Student Veterans Association, and professor of naval science.

“Texas A&M has a rich legacy of student veteran support,” Smith said. Going on his second year as director, he’s excited to continue serving Texas A&M’s veteran students. “It’s about loyalty to each other. And I consider it an honor and a privilege to assume these new responsibilities with our Veteran Resource & Support Center.”

Financial support of the Veteran Support & Resource Center is just one of the many ways Texas A&M is impacted by the generous donors to The Association's Annual Fund. Click to see more ways in which your gifts make an impact on Texas A&M students, faculty and staff.

Veterans: Share Your Story With Aggieland

Texas A&M University has a unique tradition of military service. Countless Aggies have gone off to fight and returned to finish their degrees and many continue to serve while attending A&M. Unfortunately, many of our current students have not heard the stories from our most recent Aggie veterans.
If you are a veteran, active duty military, Reserve/National Guard, or the spouse/child of a servicemember, you can be a part of “Telling Aggieland” and contribute to the Aggie traditions of excellence and leadership by enriching our military heritage. Your story can help bridge the gap between the military and civilian world. For more information, contact Debbie Pack at (979) 845-3161 or debbiep@tamu.edu.

“Telling Aggieland” is sponsored by The Association of Former Students, Academy for the Visual and Performing Arts, and Veteran Resource and Support Center.

In addition, the Veteran Resource and Support Center, in conjunction with Aggie Athletics, wants to thank you for your service and sacrifice to our country by recognizing one student veteran every football game prior to the raising of the flag and national anthem. To share your story, call (979) 845-3161 before Aug. 21 to set up a time to speak to Cesar Sarabia, a student and Army Veteran in the Veteran Resource and Support Center.

Photo caption: The   Texas A&M Veteran Resource and Support Center, centrally located in the Koldus Student Services Building, was formally dedicated in October 2012.  At center is the VRSC Director Col. Jerry Smith ’82.



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