Military service members often experience a variety of tough battles in the line of duty. They also may encounter many challenges after returning home — some of these challenges can feel even tougher to endure. Returning to the classroom in pursuit of a college degree can fall into this category.

SFA’s Veterans Resource Center was created to help students overcome this challenge. Opening its doors in 2012, the VRC provides veterans, their dependents and ROTC members with the resources to help them complete their college degree.

As the center’s coordinator, I help students manage the day-to-day stressors associated with the transition to college life, and I can truly say that my current role is just as important as the role I served in the U.S. Army with the 3rd Ranger Battalion.

Since coming to SFA in 2008, I’ve earned two degrees, assisted with the development of the center and also recently became a licensed professional counselor. My goal has always been to build a solid framework and philosophy that supports a service-oriented veterans center at SFA. I’m proud our university is a veteran-inclusive institution that proudly serves those who served their country.

In addition to providing a space where students can study and enjoy social experiences with like-minded individuals, the VRC offers free printing and testing materials, a complimentary coffee and refreshment bar, access to résumé creation materials, and advisement from the university’s career services staff members. Most importantly, we provide an open door where students can walk in at any time and receive help.

If you know a veteran or a veteran’s dependent who is interested in pursuing a college degree, please help me spread the word about the variety of resources available at the VRC. Let these prospective SFA students know we care about their success and understand the difficulties they may face with the college transition. We will see them through every step of the journey during their college career — all the way to the other side of the graduation stage.