Veterans Resource Center cuts the ribbon to new location

The transition from the military to school wasn’t easy for Student Veterans Association President Amy Thrunson, but with Cal State Fullerton’s Veterans Resource Center she could rely on a place for comfort.

I was able to find a family, a place where I could refine my leadership skills, support and so much more,” Thrunson said at the grand opening of the Veterans Resource Center’s new location Wednesday.

The Veterans Resource Center was originally located in University Hall 230, but due to a limited amount of space was moved to University Hall 244.

Jose Guevara, a former Marine and CSUF alumnus, said he was pleased with the new place for veterans on campus, as it is considerably larger and all of the resources are now located in one spot.  

“This space really suits us, it really suits the population. It allows veterans to come in here, get their services, get their benefits squared away and to engage other veterans that might be going through the same issues while they transition in and out of the military,” Guevara said.

Most student veterans are between the ages of 24 and 40, with 47 percent of them having children and 47.3 percent being married. Sixty-two percent of student veterans are first-generation students, according to statistics from the National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

The Veterans Resource Center provides students with benefits such as priority registration, counseling and financial support through scholarships and the Veterans Financial Assistance Program, according to its website.

The Veterans Resource Center and Student Veterans Association’s goal is to be that one-stop home for our students,” Thrunson said. “We do our best to provide them with an inclusive and supportive environment, and give them the tools and services they need to support their personal, professional and academic goals.”

The Titan Warrior Wellness Program was established by the resource center, and provides student veterans with support groups and personal growth opportunities, according to the Veterans Resource Center website.

Public officials like Fullerton Mayor Doug Chaffee, and CSUF faculty attended the ceremony to show their support for the new center.

CSUF President Fram Virjee also spoke and addressed his support for the center. He acknowledged those who served and said their courage and dedication to one another is humbling and is what uplifts the university.

The (Veterans Resource Center) is what I consider to be the living, breathing manifestation of everything that we are at this university and that we hope to be. Strength-based, student centered, inclusive, innovative, collaborative and accountable,” Virjee said.

Marshall Thomas, director of Active Duty and Veterans Affairs, applauded CSUF for its treatment and the way the campus welcomes veterans.

We are at a stage in veterans’ education where a lot of campuses are forgetting that the veterans are still there,” Thomas said. “I’m pleased that this campus recognizes that we are not done taking care of those folks that are getting out.”

Above all, the resource center is a source of relief for veterans.

“When you’re transitioning from military to civilian life, either going to the work force or to school, you’re not gonna do it alone, and it’s okay to lean on each other and this is something where you can do that,” Guevara said.

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