The annual Veterans in Union Breakfast (VIU) held June 14, 2018. The event provided the opportunity to celebrate our VIU students, graduates, and partners in education that make the Veterans in Union program successful.
President Sublett asked the crowd to remember the women and men who serve our nation both at home and around the world and reminded the audience that they deserve our deepest respect and fondest regards for their sacrifices. He also acknowledged the many veterans who have chosen Union to continue their education through the Veterans in Union program.
Veterans in Union student Timothy Cox spoke next. Tim is a drug and alcohol counselor with the Veterans Administration and a student in the Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. He shared his passion for helping fellow veterans through mental health, drug, and alcohol rehabilitation efforts.
The keynote speaker for the breakfast was Major General (Retired) Leonard M Randolph Jr M.D. of the United States Air Force. Dr. Randolph relayed lessons in leadership with his deployment in Operation Desert Storm where he was tasked with implementing hospitals and medical care.
Dr. Randolph served at the Pentagon as Deputy Surgeon General and as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense and COO in Health Plan Administration. General Randolph earned his B.S. degree at Marietta College in biology (member of Beta Beta Beta, National Biology Honorary), his M.S. degree at Howard University in microbiology (member of Beta Kappa Chi, National Science Honor Society) and his M.D. degree at Meharry Medical College (member of Alpha Omega Alpha, National Medical Honor Society). Dr. Randolph completed his Straight Surgery Internship and General Surgery Residency at the Medical Center at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi.
Union honored the veterans in attendance with the presentation of Veterans in Union coins. The coin represents the legacy of service and is a keepsake and token of appreciation.
The VIU program was started to recognize and honor the sacrifices made through our veterans’ service to our country, and commit to their success through supplemental grant funding in the form of education and customized veterans’ services. The Veterans in Union program offers a three-term $7500 living allowance stipend ($2500 per term) for honorably discharged veterans. The stipend is a subsidy to match the VA MHA received by distance education students. This funding makes the use of VA benefits at Union comparable to use at a residential college. The stipend assistance is available for three full-time semesters during the first year of the academic program.
Union is a Yellow Ribbon University, recognized by the Department of Defense for its outstanding service encouraging the education of Veterans. Union is in the Top 25 percent ranking of Military Friendly Institutions recognized by Victory Media in Higher Learning, and accepts previous credits and experience including ACE Credits, Dantes, CLEP, and more. In addition, Union is listed on the U.S. Department of Education’ Eight Keys to Veterans’ Success site.