SVA on the Road: University of Central Oklahoma
Student Veterans of America | October 14, 2016
Written by: Eric Gage, Student Veterans of America's Director of Chapter Services


On August 29th and 30th I had the honor of attending UCO Veteran Orientation hosted by Central Veterans, the SVA chapter at the University of Central Oklahoma. The event took place in the UCO Nigh University Center Ballroom. It was an open house style event with many local and national veterans' organizations present, as well as different key offices from around campus. Student Veterans were invited to sign in, enter for door prizes and speak to all the groups and campus services in attendance. Each student veteran who attended the event and talked to every exhibiter in attendance got a special prize. New and returning student veterans came away with valuable contacts and resources, along with prizes.

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While on campus, chapter leaders and I had the honor of attending meetings with different campus, community, and state officials to improve the campus and community for student veterans.

SVA on the Road: University of Deleware
Student Veterans of America | October 14, 2016
Written by: Eric Gage, Student Veterans of America's Director of Chapter Services


Earlier this semester, student veterans across the country returned to campus. Most campuses hold "New Student Orientation" and some schools even have "Student Veteran New Student Orientation".

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On July 25th I had the honor of attending and speaking at a new student orientation hosted by Blue Hen Veterans, the SVA chapter at the University of Delaware. The leaders of BHV built a campus supported, grant-funded new student orientation for veterans. The event took place during a day full of activities for all new students to the University of Delaware. The breakout for veterans consisted of lunch with a short presentation about veterans' benefits, a speech by the Dean of Students and other administrators, and myself. My speech included information about what SVA has to offer like scholarships, leadership training, and grants. I also spoke about how SVA helped me be successful at college and ultimatly graduate. The leaders of BHV spoke about veterans' education and services on the campus of University of Delaware.

SVA's Fight to Protect 35,000 Student Veterans from Losing GI Bill Benefits
Written by: Derek Fronabarger, Director of Policy, Student Veterans of America

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For the past few months Student Veterans of America has worked diligently in passing a Bill to protect students from the pending ACICS closings. The Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ACICS) was being considered by the Department of Education for de-recondition. If this happened, 35,000 student veterans attending these schools would be unable to receive GI Bill benefits at over 236 individual schools.

Financial Readiness: Critical to the Mission
Written by: Jeff Cathey, Senior Military Affairs Executive, Bank of America

Service members who are transitioning to civilian life face a flurry of financial questions: How can I get the most out of the GI Bill; what’s the best way to obtain a mortgage; where will I get health insurance; and what do I need to know about taxes? Financial issues are a key part of transition and rate among service members’ top concerns, according to a recent survey from Blue Star Families. 


Fortunately, resources are available to answer these questions and ease some of the uncertainty that comes with making the leap from Active Duty service to the civilian workforce.
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Participating in the above Financial Rediness Panel are Lewis Runnion, public policy director with Bank of America’s Military Affairs team, Vivian Greentree, Ph.D., head of Military and Veteran Affairs at First Data, Phillip Carter, director of the Military, Veterans and Society Program at the Center for a New American Security,and Brigadier General Belinda Pinckney,U.S. Army (Ret), CEO, BHP Consulting, LLC and the treasurer of the Army Women’s Foundation

At Bank of America, we want to ensure people have access to the knowledge and resources they need to make financial decisions with confidence. Through our partnership with the non-profit Khan Academy, we provide, a free education resource that pairs Khan Academy’s expertise in online learning with our financial know-how to deliver simple, easy-to-understand information on a wide range of personal finance topics.

Accessing Elite Undergraduate Programs 
Written by: Peter Kiernan, President of the Ivy League Veterans Council

The Ivy League Veterans Council is actually an effort inspired from the Student Veterans of America Leadership Summit I attended in New York City in 2015. At the Leadership Summit, SVA brought together the student veterans leaders from universities all over the region in one room to share best practices and teach the chapters how to further develop. The model was so successful we decided to emulate it for the Ivy League Veterans Council. Because of the selective nature of elite universities, most student veteran groups at these universities face unique challenges furthering veteran issues on their campuses, mainly getting more veterans to their schools. In 2015 we brought together student veterans leaders from the Ivy League universities to get a better understanding of the issues at selective universities, share best practices, and figure out how to help each other. We came away from that meeting with a mission statement, a charter for our new organization, and a better understanding of the problem.

Pete Kiernan at the 2015 SVA Leadership Summit in New York

Peter Kiernan at the 2015 SVA Leadership Summit in New York.


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