Friday, May 25, 2007

Severely Injured Military Veterans: Fulfilling Their Dreams. No. 465.

College Counseling for Veterans.

Insdie Higher education reports:

“What we’ve found is not necessarily the need for different and new programs, but to create awareness of the programs that already exist,” said Jim Selbe, director of program evaluations for ACE, the national umbrella group for higher education.

This allows us to fill a gap,” Selbe said. “The Department of Defense, they invest heavily in promoting the value of higher education, and they put a like investment in putting in the resources to ensure access and success in quality higher education programs. The participation is so high that a service member doesn’t need to look far to find someone who can provide them with advice and counsel and the like.

“But once they leave active duty, they lose the convenience and the access to those sorts of advisers.”

The initiative was inspired by James Wright, Dartmouth College’s president and a Marine Corps veteran, who first approached the council about beginning such a program after noting a need for greater educational guidance on his regular visits to service members at Walter Reed and Bethesda Naval Hospital, both in the Washington, D.C., area.

Wright played a prominent role in raising more than $300,000 from private sources to allow ACE to hire two full-time educational advisers. One of them, Heather Bernard, the mother of an Iraq War veteran, works with service members at Walter Reed and Bethesda. Jeff Stevens, a disabled Vietnam veteran with a doctorate from Texas A&M University, just began working with service members at Brooks Army Hospital in San Antonio three weeks ago.

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