SVA Voices: Ryan Rabac

Student Veterans of America is excited to announce the promotion of Ryan Rabac to Digital Communications Manager. Rabac began volunteering with SVA on the local level when he was an undergraduate at Florida State University and continued his work with veterans at the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) while pursuing his MPA from Syracuse University. This is his story:

 

I hear it all the time. It’s that unforgettable experience when a veteran takes a seat in a college classroom and meets their first ungrateful 18-year-old classmate. Some student veterans recall opening questions such as “why would you ever join the military?” from their new educational peers, fresh out of high school and seemingly without a care in the world.

 

SVA Voices: Verna Jones

To close out Women’s History Month, SVA would like to highlight the historical and inspiring leadership of Verna Jones, the first woman to lead the American Legion in its nearly-100-year history. Recognized for her leadership of the Legion earlier this year at SVA’s 2016 National Conference, Jones was most recently honored during the HillVets 100 reception.   

 

SVA Voices: Lindsay Dearing

Lindsay Dearing has dedicated her life to service. She served for 12 years in the United States Army, as a Military Intelligence instructor at Fort Huachuca, and as a Jumpmaster with the 82nd Airborne Division. Between 2005 and 2012, she deployed to Afghanistan four times in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Lindsay was medically retired from the Army in 2015 as a Sergeant First Class and transitioned to college to pursue higher education. She is currently enrolled as a student at The University of Arizona and expects to graduate in 2016 with a Bachelors of Applied Science in Human Services. In addition to maintaining a full-time course load and a 3.86 GPA, Lindsay serves as a Wounded Warrior Fellow in the Tucson District Office of Congresswoman Martha McSally. In this position she helps veterans as a constituent caseworker and staffs the congresswoman at veterans and military events throughout southeastern Arizona.

Jessica Houghton

Student Veterans of America prides itself on inclusion and celebrating the diversity of the many student veterans that make up SVA Chapters across the country. The purpose of SVA Voices is to amplify the stories of these student veterans. During the month of March, we will be celebrating Women's History Month with stories from women student veterans.  

 

Kiersten Downs 

Student Veterans of America prides itself on inclusion and celebrating the diversity of the many student veterans that make up SVA Chapters across the country. The purpose of SVA Voices is to amplify the stories of these student veterans. During the month of March, we will be celebrating Women's History Month with stories from female student veterans. 

 

Kiersten Downs served in the United States Air Force for four years and the New York Air National Guard for four years, for a total of eight years, before transitioning into the role of student. Downs is now pursuing her Ph.D. in Applied Anthropology and recently joined SVA's Board of Directors where she will serve as the voice for other student veterans around the country. It was during her Ph.D. studies that Kiersten discovered the benefits of joining SVA, a luxury that she wished would have been available to her during her undergraduate years. 

  

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