The First Annual Saint Michael's College Military Community Gallery Reception will be Thursday, November 10 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Dion Family Student Center. The event, being organized by the campus chapter of the Student Veterans Association of America, will be “celebrating our military tradition, our present student military” at Saint Michael’s,” according to SVA leaders.
This year’s event will be honoring the Marine Corps’ 241st birthday on the day of the reception, along with celebrating Veterans Day which falls the following day. According to an invitation from SVA leaders, “We hope to inspire both Saint Michael’s students and veterans to further their service to others and continue to pursue a higher education. Saint Michael’s College fosters a great value in a liberal art education while at the same time, an even stronger sense of community and the SVA would like to uphold that reputation.”
Heavy Hors d'oeuvres will be served. Those wishing to attend can register online or call 802-654-2707. Please reply by November 4. Space is limited.
The student veterans at Saint Michael’s organized a chapter of the National Student Veterans of America (SVA) in 2013. Since then, the group has been quite active on campus in raising awareness among the campus population about veterans and current members of the military.
Since its inception, the Saint Michael’s chapter of the SVA has raised money to assemble more than 100 care packages for troops deployed overseas. The group has also conducted two Veterans Day panels made up of Student Veterans in an open forum to educate the campus community about how experiences in a combat zone shape the lives of service members, as well as a panel consisting of military dependents, veterans, and ROTC cadets discussing their life experiences and how those shape their college experience.
The group’s mission is to empower veterans and military connected students to make a positive transition to the Saint Michael’s campus as well as into the community. This will be accomplished through advocacy and collaboration with alumni and community partners.
“We feel hosting an event such as this opens up doors of networking opportunities for students, alumni and our greater community members,” says the group’s adviser Ken O’Connell, coordinator of student veteran services in the new Military Community Services office in Klein Hall starting this semester. “This event will raise awareness of veterans in our communities, raise donations for supplies for Vermont’s Veteran’s Houses, and care packages for currently deployed students and alumni of Saint Michael’s College.”