They have a great track record for serving veteran students.
And West Virginia University at Parkersburg ranks sixth on Military Times 2014 "Best for Vets: Career & Technical Colleges" list.
With the opening of the Veterans Resource Center, Anthony Underwood, vice president for student services says it marks a new chapter that they're able to serve veteran students even better.
It provides a place for vets to form and reform old connections and to know where they can go on campus to talk to people who've had the exact same experiences but are also successful in college.
“In the past couple of years we've signed a special relationship with the West Virginia National Guard and of course it's their intent to build a multimillion dollar facility here on campus,” Underwood says. “That speaks to the level of commitment that we have to our veteran students and those students who are currently serving in the military.”
According to Underwood, staff at the Veterans Resource Center are already starting to form one-on-one relationships with many of the service providers in our region.
So when a student needs a particular service, even non-academic, they can go there and be pointed in the right direction.
Jared Towner, vice president, Student Vets of America Association at WVUP says the Veterans Resource Center is a student union for veterans and it's very significant.
Especially when you're dealing with higher levels of anxiety, depression and post traumatic stress than your standard population, he says the vets really need a place to feel comfortable and be around people who understand.
“You're also dealing with the demographic that is traditionally 10 years older than the rest of your student body and it gives us the ability to calm our nerves and learn from one another, especially as we find out that it's a lot more difficult to come back to academia after being out for so many years,” he says.
According to Towner, when you see big ideas, particularly those that cost money, often timelines get pushed back or things don't happen at all -- so he's ecstatic to see this actually come to fruition.