PHOTO CAPTION 1: Certificate for Veterans’ Service Providers professional development training participants at the Armstrong Center.
PHOTO CAPTION 2: From left to right: Ryan Anglin, Military Liaison for the Georgia Secretary of State's Office, U.S. Congressman Buddy Carter and Armstrong's Military Education Coordinator Phil Gore.
(March 18, 2016) – More than 70 veterans’ service professionals representing 51 different colleges and universities from 16 states and the District of Columbia participated in the Certificate for Veterans’ Service Providers (CVSP) professional development training March 9-11 at Armstrong State University. The program, designed by New Jersey-based Operation College Promise (OCP) and sponsored in part by Armstrong and the University System of Georgia, educates and empowers veterans’ service providers to support veterans as they reintegrate to civilian life, particularly to higher education.
Participants heard from some of the nation’s most prominent experts on veteran reintegration. The program featured presentations from the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Army’s Soldier for Life program, American Council on Education, the Department of Labor, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), among others. The audience also heard from keynote speakers Armstrong President Dr. Linda Bleicken and U.S. Congressman Buddy Carter.
“This program was an invaluable experience in learning how to better serve our military- affiliated student population,” noted Anna Burns, director of the Academic Institutions for Military Students Network. “I have better insights to the Post 9/11 GI Bill, and most importantly to the advances in mental health counseling for our service members and veterans.”
The VA reports that more than one million veterans and service members are taking advantage of the Post-9/11 GI Bill. The growth of the veteran population on college and university campuses is expected to continue to grow as more than one million service members are slated to transition to civilian life over the next five years.
“The CVSP is the most comprehensive training program available to professionals who work with veterans in higher education,” said Phil Gore, Armstrong’s military education coordinator. “Armstrong shares OCP’s vision to create an environment conducive to student veteran success. We are proud to partner with OCP to host a conference that gives professionals the tools they need to ensure student veterans achieve their academic, professional and life goals.”
The CVSP’s research-driven agenda is comprised of seven modules designed to assist professionals supporting veteran clients. Special emphasis is placed on contemporary resources available for veterans of post-9/11 conflicts.
“There is no population that we as a nation are more indebted to than those brave men and women who have worn the uniform and sacrificed so much on our behalf,” added Wendy A. Lang, OCP director. “Our mission was to provide the attendees with a comprehensive framework to construct environments that will optimize the success of veterans to, through, and beyond the attainment of a college degree.”