How universities are honoring veterans this week

From virtual sessions to live tours of military sites, institutions are finding ways during the COVID-19 pandemic to honor those who served.
By: | November 9, 2020
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Pace University in New York is one of many institutions across the country that are dedicating this week to the veterans on their campus that have served in the military.

Pace’s Student Veterans Appreciation Week celebration, which began Monday and runs through Friday, is extra special this year thanks to the recent unveiling of its new Student Veterans Center, which will be a conduit for personnel to network and acquire benefit information on the GI Bills, Yellow Ribbon Program and Vocational Rehab.

“At Pace University, we are grateful for the sacrifices that our veterans have made to serve our country,” said President Marvin Krislov. “On this Veterans Week and throughout the year, we are proud to support our student veterans and their families, and we honor all those who have bravely worn the uniform.”​

Among the many activities planned for the week are a series of virtual sessions for veterans, including those from military leaders, along with a tour of the 9-11 Museum and other historic sites. There is also a webinar on educational benefits, a career services meet-and-greet at the student center and a 5K race on campus that will take place on Wednesday, Veterans Day.

Pace has planned two major events for veterans: a visit to Fort Montgomery on Thursday and a trip to the USS Intrepid Air and Space Museum on Friday.

“Veterans are an esteemed group who have honorably served and sacrificed so much for our nation,” said COL (Ret) Peter Riley, director of Pace Office of Veterans Services. “Student Veterans contribute to the character, diversity and dynamism of campus life here at Pace University, which is why we are proud to sponsor Student Veterans Appreciation Week.”

Though many colleges and universities have had to temper or postpone some live events, these institutions are doing their part to keep the tradition going:

  • Texas A&M-San Antonio is honoring veterans with a huge number of events throughout the week, including a Veterans Day Parade in downtown San Antonio; a flag-raising ceremony at its veteran’s affairs building on campus; a Veterans Day lunch; a session with members of the Texas Veterans Commission exploring the topic “Invisible Wounds of War”; and a community-wide kickball tournament on campus featuring veterans, family members and friends, among other events. It is also live streaming a nationwide discussion after a screening of the movie “SurvivingHome”. In addition, all November, the university is waiving application fees for veterans: “Waiving application fees will help military students adapt to higher education,” said Dr. Mari Fuentes-Martin, vice president of Student Success and Engagement. “We at A&M-San Antonio are excited to launch this initiative for November that will encourage future leaders to attend the University and share their knowledge and experiences.”
  • The University of Maryland’s veterans’ week will include a vigil for its fallen service members on Wednesday. It will culminate with a series of fun activities, including a night of axe throwing in Washington, DC, as well as a virtual happy hour on Saturday after the football game against Ohio State.
  • The University of Michigan began a week of programming with sessions Monday on the LGBTQ+ in the military, service during the COVID-19 and impressions from nursing military alumni during the pandemic. UM will have a ceremonial flag raising on Wednesday, along with a Vietnam Veteran war panel. Friday will feature sessions on women in the military and sexual harassment in the military.
  • The University of Maine had its flag raising ceremony today along with “Green Zone Training” for attendees to learn more about the military experience. The university is planning a session on veteran suicide on Thursday along with a senior art exhibition on post-traumatic stress disorder on Friday.
  • Liberty University is celebrating veterans with a week of shout-outs on social media with the hashtag #HonorThem. It is also planning a military appreciation convocation on Wednesday, veterans’ reception on Thursday and a 5-mile run on Friday. It culminates with a Military Appreciation Football Game against Western Carolina on Saturday that will have social distancing restrictions of 1,000 fans.

Though many colleges and universities have scaled back celebrations this year, many are still hosting Veterans Week celebrations. University Business will add information as it becomes available. Higher ed institutions can email Chris at cburt@lrp.com