From Military to College: Veteran Students Discuss Transition to Civilian Life

  From Military to College: Veteran Students Discuss Transition to Civilian Life

RALEIGH, N.C. (February 23, 2018) - Student veterans served as panelists for a UNC-TV livestreamed program today. The NC Veterans Coffee was a chance to hear from student veterans on the challenges they faced after serving in the military, and what it was like to enroll in college. The event was held in Building L on the Southern Wake Campus. It was sponsored by Wake Tech’s Military and Veterans Programs, in partnership with UNC-TV and a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Several of the panelists told host Jeff Smith that enrolling in college was daunting after military service, but they found help at Wake Tech through the college’s Military and Veterans Resource Center. Student Aaron Ruffin encouraged veterans transitioning to civilian life to set goals and follow through on them. Wake Tech alum Tammy Shovelton said “Coming to Wake Tech was the best thing I could do – ever!” Shovelton went on to earn a master’s degree and is now teaching at Wake Tech. “I owe a lot to Wake Tech,” she says. Other students who participated on the panel include Rodell Grandberry, Charles Salazar, and Jarratt Vogler.

“We want veterans to know we appreciate their service,” says Sam Strickland, SVP for Military and Veteran Programs and also a veteran. “In our Resource Center, we can point them in the right direction and help them accomplish their civilian career goals.”

The Military and Veterans Resource Center serves as a hub for student veterans and their families, with space to work on class assignments or network with other students. The college offers free workshops and hosts an annual Veterans Summit. Wake Tech has been designated a Military Friendly® School by Victory Media. With more than 1,800 veterans, Wake Tech has the third largest student veteran population among North Carolina community colleges.