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SOU gets grants for veterans center

Mail Tribune file photo

A Southern Oregon University entity designed to help veterans and military families is the recipient, for the second year in a row, of a grant from the state’s Veterans Affairs arm.

The Social Justice and Equity Center earned $58,163 from the department’s Campus Veteran Grant Award, meant to help veterans who are studying at the university.

In an SOU press release, Jesse S. Watson, the university’s equity coordinator for Veterans & Military Families, talked about how the funds will be used, saying it will create a “two-pronged cultural competence training course” for incoming students and for staff and faculty; allow for more orientation and outreach activities; add a new graduate assistant and a range of other programs to support the center.

“The Campus Veteran Grant Award will enable the VMF program at SOU to amplify its existing campus programs focused on supporting veterans and military family members,” SOU said in the news release. “The grant highlights three pillars: successful transition from military service to college life, success in college and completion of educational goals; and the transition from college to the workforce and community.”

In the same release, Kelly Fitzpatrick, director of the Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs, said that education can be “a critical gateway for many veterans to transition out of the military into a successful civilian career.”

For more information about VMF programs, see www.sou.edu/veterans.