Veterans Awareness Week

November 13, 2015

Veterans Day Coins"For those who have fought for it, freedom has a flavor the protected will never know."

Veterans Day is a significant date for St. Joseph's College. Our community has been lucky enough to be populated by an increasing number of servicemen and women, veterans and active duty military members alike. For troops looking to earn a degree, SJC has long been a highly sought institution due to the wealth of benefits available. Benefits that recently rose, after the opening of the new Veterans Lounge in the basement of McEntegart Library. 

The Lounge's opening was preceded by two on-campus Veterans Day ceremonies during Wednesday, November 11.

At our Veterans Day celebration, guest speaker Charles Byrd '17 (U.S. Army, 1975-1993), president of SJC's U.S. Veterans and Armed Services Society, saluted the audience in the Tuohy Hall Lounge and spoke of the ongoing battles fought by veterans after returning home. "A lot of veterans feel shortchanged when they come back and they have to go through the hassle and the struggle of trying to get into school," Byrd said. "Being that I've been out of school for a while, SJC has the right speed, it has the convenience. I've been enjoying the journey."

Lakessha Green '15 (U.S. Army, 1999-2011) vice president of the Veterans and Armed Services Society, stood in front of an audience of military, students, faculty and community members and talked of her experience on 9-11, knowing she would be deployed within weeks of the attacks on the World Trade Center. She fought back tears describing her return home from the Middle East, and her daughter's constant worry that her mother would leave again. 

The challenges facing members of our Armed Forces are great, but not insurmountable. There is a reason this brave group has excelled — they have been chosen for battle, and continually persevere despite the obstacles placed before them. The same qualities that made our veterans elite soldiers are the same that make them elite students. This was a touchstone on which SJC President Jack P. Calareso, Ph.D. spoke during the Veterans Lounge opening on November 12. 

"The first thing I want to say is thank you to the veterans that are here. Thank you for your service, thank you for your commitment. But I want to say something different than that. I want to thank you for being committed to your education."
— SJC President Jack P. Calareso, Ph.D.

Joined by Angela Diaz (Assistant Dean — Office of Military and Veterans Affairs), Sherrie Van Arnam (Vice President for Student Life), Charles Byrd, Lakessha Green and a group of student veterans, Dr. Calareso helped unveil the new Veterans Lounge space.

As St. Joseph's College continues in our mission of providing a quality education to our servicemen and women, we also seek to provide comfort and guidance to all who need it. The Veterans Day celebrations and new Lounge demonstrate that our school is always seeking to help our most valued resource: our students. 

Interested in giving back to the women and men of our Armed Forces? Kathryn Brucas '17 of our Students Taking a Role In Positively Empowering Society (S.T.R.I.P.E.S.) Club lets you know how:

Veterans Week at SJC BrooklynS.T.R.I.P.E.S. gives back

To  honor our servicemen across the country, S.T.R.I.P.E.S. is collecting donations for a one-time box to send to a soldier overseas through the organization Project Frontline. In addition to the donations, we are collecting letters and photographs to show our support for those who do so much for our country. Please considering donating to those whose need our support and love the most from back home in the USA.

All donations can be brought to the Student Involvement and Leadership Offices in Tuohy Hall until the end of November. Donations include and are not limited to: food (beef jerky, gum/candy, dried fruits, hot sauce, Gatorade singles, Lipton tea mixes, Mios, protein/Cliff bars etc.), health/hygiene ( bandaids, chap sticks, deodorants, floss, foot powder, hair brush, shampoo/conditioner, toilet paper etc.), miscellaneous (batteries, journal, plastic water bottles, twin size sheets, pens, plastic utensils, envelopes etc.), fun (footballs, frisbee, soccer balls, playing cards, magazines, crosswords etc.)

For more information please contact Kathryn Brucas '17 ([email protected]) • Mary Edward '17 ([email protected]) • Katie Wenzler '19 ([email protected])