Chapter of the Month: Marywood University
The student veterans of Marywood University are invested in success. Not only do they strive to recognize the contributions of their active-duty comrades, but they have also put a lot of time and hard work into the academic success of the veterans attending their institution and those living and working within the local area, encouraging a tradition of progress.
With their Operation: Tails for Troops program, this generous chapter worked to provide funds for service dogs to comfort troops suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and/or a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and will be doing so again this year. Additionally, through the R-VETS program (Renewal-Veteran Education and Transition Services), these philanthropic student veterans focus on providing veterans in the community with access to postsecondary education by offering free introductory courses in the areas of Math, English, and Writing, along with additional preparatory, transitional services.
According to chapter president Christopher Smith, the value in the SVA chapter at Marywood University and its peers across the nation lies in the ability to start a dialogue. “With each generation of veterans, those previous are pushed to the wayside,” says Smith “SVA chapters give each generation of veterans the ability to meet and talk about their experiences as well as provide support for those who need it.” A chapter sparks a vital conversation between those who are affiliated with and affected by the group, but also a more significant narrative.
Being a voice and face for veterans seeking to build their success in the eyes of your campus administration and the nation is the undertaking of each chapter member, and something that is immeasurably valuable. Were it not for chapters, “veterans would be more than likely to fall behind the rest of the country, which would be a disservice to the brave men and women who risked everything and asked for nothing.”
Vital chapters like these are the lifeblood of our national network, and are defining the transition process for thousands of servicemembers. The door to help yourself and other student veterans through understanding and advocacy is open, and now is the time to walk through it.