Veterans Issues and College Support

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1 Veterans Issues and College Support Laurie Wolf Executive Dean, Student Services 2015 PacFAA Conference Student Veterans Concerns Financial Concerns Tuition Room and Board Childcare Health Care and Insurance Academic Concerns Admissions Process Graduating on time Student Veterans Concerns Personal/Social Concerns Feelings of isolation or alienation Non-traditional students with uncommon experiences No battle buddies Transitioning to civilian life Possible anger, relationship, or trust issues Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or Traumatic Brain Injury Incorporating family into local community 1

2 Veteran Services Office Located within Financial Aid Office. Under Division of Student Services Office Structure Coordinator Veterans Support/Advisory Team Veteran Services Office Processes federal and state education benefits. Provides scholarship and financial aid advising. Point person for institutional and community resources. Troubleshoots problems associated with VA processing. Ensures compliance with federal and state veteran benefit policies and regulations. Primary responder to military friendly surveys and data requests. First Steps Admission Application Questions: Are you a U.S. Veteran, a reservist or currently on active duty? Are you the spouse or dependent of a U.S. Veteran or active duty personnel? Responses Generate a communication plan: Letter of Welcome How to register for Veterans Benefits How to apply for credit for military service 2

3 Veterans Education Benefits Chapter 33 (Post 9/11 GI Bill) Over 70% of claims processed Tuition and Fees paid to schools MHA paid to student Book/Supply Stipend paid to student Chapters 30, 1606, 1607, 35 & VRAP paid to student Chapter 31 paid to school by Voc Rehab Veteran Affairs Office Connects prospective military affiliated students with Academic Advisors and Counselors. Increases and improves campus and community support for students and connects students to these resources. Advises veteran focused student organization. Hosts trainings to educate faculty and staff on student veterans strengths and challenges. Coordinates multiple campus programs DMACC has six campuses Coordinates benefits orientation meetings for Veterans and their families Collaboration with Community Supports Iowa Department of Education Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs Iowa Veterans Health System (VA Hospitals) County VA Coordinators Vets Center counseling services referrals Iowa Works 3

4 Collaboration with Community Supports VA Vocational Rehabilitation Iowa College Student Aid Commission Iowa Air and Army National Guard Governors Home Base Iowa Advisory Board Mental Health Counseling Committee Veterans Support/Advisory Team Separation of duties Focus on area of expertise Peak seasons differ between offices Divide and conquer Communication across divisions Increases veteran awareness throughout campus Veterans Support/Advisory Team Executive Dean, Student Services Veterans Affairs Coordinator Academic Advisor Director of Student Development Admission Recruiter Financial Aid Advisor Disability Coordinator Voc Rehab Counselor Two Counselors Orientation Coordinator Admission Specialist Career Resources Coordinator Credentials Specialist College Experience Course Coordinator 4

5 Campus Efforts Beyond Veterans Assistance Office Veterans only College Experience Course Early Registration Tuition Holds Bookstore Vouchers Early Alert System Veterans Emergency Grants Veteran Student Group Faculty/staff mentors who are veterans Campus Efforts Beyond Veterans Assistance Office Student Health Center Campus counselors certified in mental health assistance In-State Tuition Creating a Veterans Lounge Distance Education option for those called up to Active Duty during a term Campus Efforts Beyond Veterans Assistance Office Academic Deans participating in statewide articulation discussion to allow veterans academic credit for military experience Arts and science courses - ACE agreements Career and Technical programs - follow industry standards and provide challenge tests Review Joint Services Transcripts (JST) to determine what experiences can be used. 5

6 Campus Efforts Beyond Veterans Assistance Office Veterans Job Placement Fair Governor s Taskforce on Home Base Iowa Veterans Day Activities Graphic Arts Department Students create posters each year. Veterans History Project produced by Real Time/Court Reporting Students The Telling sponsored by the Student Services Division Paws and Effect worked with campus community to establish better understanding about service animals for vets 5K Run, Walk, Ruck: In My Boots 6

7 QUESTIONS Contact Information:

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