MSU Billings creates new Military and Veteran Success Center
Dedication and ribbon cutting ceremony to be held during Veterans Day Celebration on Nov. 11
University Relations and Communications, 657-2266
MSU BILLINGS NEWS— During this year’s Veterans Day commemoration, Montana State University Billings will unveil its new Military and Veteran Success Center while honoring the 100-year anniversary of Armistice Day.
MSU Billings constantly works to create a greater learning environment for college students of all ages and backgrounds through innovations in the services offered on campus.
Following the Veterans Day ceremony in Petro Theater, guests will move to the College of Education (COE) building for a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Military and Veteran Success Center. The center will be located inside the COE in room 106 with a satellite location at City College.
For many years, MSU Billings has been a veteran-friendly campus willing to welcome and support the many veterans who choose to continue their education. The institution is dedicated to providing our veterans with the resources they need to thrive in all walks of life. Although nothing can compensate for the ultimate sacrifices our veterans make, MSUB hopes this center will provide another asset for students to utilize as they receive their higher education.
The Military and Veteran Success Center will serve as a welcoming place for the military, veterans, and their families to meet and interact, gain access to resources, and receive support with Veterans’ Affairs benefits.
Currently, there are two veterans’ lounges at both the University and City College campuses available for students. These locations were usually small, dark, and inadequate for the support of our veterans. As part of Chancellor Edelman’s vision, MSUB’s goal is to create an atmosphere where veterans are welcome, wanted on campus, and provided with the services they need for themselves and their families.
The new Military and Veteran Success Center is designed to utilize the many support systems available for student success at MSU Billings. There are several on-campus resources that provide support, as well, including TRIO Student Support Services, Disability Support Services, Student Health Services, Advising and Career Services, Veteran Certification Official, TRIO Veterans Upward Bound (TRIO VUB), and the Academic Support Center. Each of these organizations has a goal to not only serve our valued veterans, but the entire student body at MSUB. There are several local, state, and national organizations that are committed to helping with the center, as well, including the Montana National Guard, US Army Reserves, ROTC, and the US Armed Forces.
The Military and Veteran Success Center’s goal is to assist veterans through three main phases. These are designed to recruit, retain, support, and graduate our veterans adequately and on time. The center will serve as a one-stop center for veterans operated by veterans.
Through recruitment, staff at the center will work with the many organizations listed above to find, encourage, and inspire veterans to come to MSUB. Specific services through recruitment include:
- Assistance in the college application process
- Help searching/registering for classes and placement exams
- Assistance with VA eligibility requirements and documentation
- FAFSA application help
- Orientation to MSUB in conjunction with TRIO VUB and New Student Services
Through the second phase of the project, retention, the center has aimed to draw in students and retain them through graduation. They will do this through:
- Assistance with class advising, field of study, graduate school, and career development
- Tutoring help with classes and work with TRIO VUB, TRIO SSS, and the Academic Support Center
- Providing space for group study sessions and relaxation, equipped with a printer and computer lab
- Mentoring veteran students and families with issues that may impact academics
- Access to scholarships and opportunities to continue military careers, if desired
- Financial and economic literacy education
- Providing a friendly space for veterans to relax and/or receive the assistance they need
Graduation is the ultimate and final goal of the Military and Veteran Success Center. As a veteran or family member reaches their degree requirements, the center will assist with requirements for graduation, pursuing employment, and finding support services for the future, including:
- Assistance with meeting graduation documentation
- Providing recognition of veteran students at graduation
- Assistance with outreach and employment opportunities
- Providing students with services after leaving campus
Before opening day, the Military and Veteran Success Center will hire a director, VA work-study, and organize operations in preparation for serving students. Each veteran and their family will now have the resources and support to transition from active service to that of a college student at MSU Billings.
For more information, contact Dave Powell, Veteran and budget manager for the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, at 657-1635 or firstname.lastname@example.org.