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UW-Superior opens resource center for veterans and nontraditional students

Posted on Sep 12, 2012
UW-Superior's new center will help ensure success for military veterans and nontraditional students.
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UW-Superior opens resource center for veterans and nontraditional students

A resource center to help nontraditional students and military veterans successfully navigate their way through college is now open at the University of Wisconsin-Superior. 

The Veteran and Nontraditional Student Center in Old Main, room 118, provides a single location where students over age 24 and veterans can learn about benefits and support, and receive assistance in accessing services such as tutoring and financial aid. The center's goal is to ease the students' transition to university life and to help them to complete their degrees.

"The Veteran and Nontraditional Student Center will integrate all of our resources and support for nontraditional and veteran students," said Vice Chancellor for Campus Life Vicki Hajewski. "It will provide a place where they can go to learn about all the services we provide for students, to meet other students in situations similar to their own, and get access to peer mentoring, career guidance, and support for their spouses and families."

More personal service

Nontraditional students are defined as those age 24 and over. UW-Superior has about 400 no-traditional students attending classes on campus -- a relatively high percentage for campuses in the University of Wisconsin System. Nearly all those students have family and job responsibilities, and many are returning to the classroom after long absences. 

"These are students who are accessing our student support services in a different way than traditional students coming here right out of high school," Hajewski said. "They often start out by taking one class, so they miss the orientation to campus services that we provide to new students. The center will enable us to expand our personal service to non-traditional students.

"They can go to the center to get help and feel comfortable asking questions there. Maybe they don't even know what questions to ask, but the center is a place they can go to find out what they need to know," she added. 

More help for veterans

Among UW-Superior's nontraditional students are about 165 military veterans and current students in military service - a group that has grown significantly in recent years and is expected to continue growing as more active duty service members return to the region from Iraq and Afghanistan. Recent studies have shown the effectiveness of providing assistance to veterans making the transition from military life to college.

The Veteran and Nontraditional Student Center will expand UW-Superior's existing services to veterans and make them more visible to qualified students. The center also can provide a location for group meetings for students' families, and workshops to develop skills such as stress management.

A coordinator will oversee the center, assist students, create programming, and supervise peer mentors. An existing part-time veterans benefit coordinator position also will grow to a full-time position for the center.

The Veteran and Nontraditional Student Center will open in September in Old Main, room 118. Funding for the center is provided by the University of Wisconsin System's Growth Agenda for Wisconsin Grant Program.

News Contact: Al Miller | amiller{atuws}
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