Personal Narrative: Diablo Valley College Veterans

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As a veteran leader, I am an asset to any community I step into. I believe I bring a widely appreciated, yet underrepresented perspective to the diverse academic environment of Syracuse. When I returned from Iraq, I worked as a Veteran Representative for the County Veteran Service Office in Martinez. There, I managed over 1,500 veterans’ medical records and guided them to the right resources for their claims, including burial proceedings, Agent Orange related illness, and other disability and compensation-related issues. I’ve experienced the battle vets fight both overseas and at home; hence, another reason for my pursuit of nonviolent conflict resolution. During this time, I became frustrated by the limitations of help available to veterans in need. I saw that without a change in policy, there will always be a limit to change you can effect. Later, I joined Journey for Change, a group dedicated to raising awareness for, and prevention of, the issue of veteran suicide. We marched from Santa Cruz to Sacramento to propose preventative policies requiring newly-discharged vets to have access to local mental health screenings and services by qualified professionals, with a follow-up…show more content…
due to the lack of membership and my reputation as the president of our colleges’ Model United Nations team I was asked to step into the vacant presidential position. I found that using the previously established model that the Student Veterans of America had branded was critical to our charters exponential growth from four members when I joined in spring 2015, to the 30 members when I graduated in spring 2017. During the inaugural year of the Diablo Valley College SVA Chapter-- the Veteran Resource Center (VRC) was constructed on DVC’s campus, creating a relaxing atmosphere for student-veterans, and providing a comfortable place to get the resources and support necessary to transition from soldiers to
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