UW-W does its part to honor and support those students and staff, both former and present, who have taken on the duty of serving their country. UW-W will host many Veteran’s Day events on Monday, Nov. 11.
The UW-W students and staff help show their support for America’s armed forces by hosting three major events on campus on Veteran’s Day. These events are part of a ceremony which includes an honor guard at the Veteran’s Day ceremony, speaker presentations and a 21-gun salute to honor veterans of all ages.
The events at the ceremony are organized by the Student Veterans Organization (SVO). This organization is also responsible for putting together other local veterans events. It collaborates with other veterans organizations such as the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the American Legion.
All of this is an effort to provide a social and support structure for veterans of the community and their families.
The president of the SVO, Curtis Lemke, will be the emcee for the Veteran’s Day ceremonies.
“Veterans have always received positive support from the community at these events,” Lemke said. “I expect a great turnout for the Veteran’s Day ceremony.”
Whitewater is home to many veterans. UW-W is a support school for veterans with a yellow ribbon distinction. As such, it uses Veteran’s Day as an opportunity to bring the support of America’s service members to the front of community awareness. The participation of the campus is absolutely necessary for student veterans to feel this support.
Student veterans are sometimes overlooked when being considered campus resources. Events such as these and organizations like the SVO, allow student veterans to take on leadership and representative roles.
The Student-Veterans and Military Services office is another campus resource that is responsible for the planning and execution of other veteran recognition events throughout the month of November. Some of these include the UW-W Women of Valor exhibit, which takes place from Nov. 1 to Nov. 30 in Roberta’s Art Gallery. Another event students can be apart of is the Veterans Community-Based Resource Fair on the UC Concourse from Nov. 12-13 and the Veteran’s Day ceremonies on Nov. 11.
“Despite having served our nation faithfully and courageously, the Veterans on our campus do not view themselves as having done something that entitles them to be recognized and acknowledged,” said Richard Harrison, Coordinator of Student-Veterans and Military Services. “Therefore, it is very important that the university recognize and acknowledge their faith and courage in defending our nation, even when they don’t.”
Great pride is taken in making sure these events are respectful, and the best that they can be. Individuals from many departments on campus get involved in making sure things go smoothly. Associate professor of history, Elizabeth Jozwiak, has gotten involved through teaching history and speaking to her students. Many of whom have served in the armed forces themselves.
“In this years ‘Salute to Veterans’, my students will be making posters and helping with the ribbon tying on the Honor Tree we have in the quad,” said Jozwiak. “We look forward to recognizing our students and staff members who are veterans as well as veterans generally. This kind of event is a great way to bring the campus community together. I think it’s important for us to be aware of our veterans’ service and to show them we do notice.”
Veterans should feel welcomed and appreciated for their bravery. With a little help from other students, staff and community members, Veteran’s Day and the month of November belongs to veterans and is a celebration for them. More information and detailed calendars of events can be found on the university’s website.