Student veterans find success and support at Sylvania Campus’ Veterans Resource Center
The Sylvania Campus Veterans Resource Center welcomed Veterans Affairs Center for Innovation (VACI) Director Patrick Littlefield on Thursday, Jan. 26. Also accompanying Director Littlefield was VA Assistant Director for Oversight and Outreach Reginald Gladney, VA Supervisory Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor Jonathan Berreth and VetSuccess on Campus Counselors Steve Gordon (PCC) and Alexandra Birmingham (Portland State University).
Littlefield, who was in town touring Portland’s VA facilities, stopped by the Sylvania Campus to view the Veterans Resource Center and to meet with students and staff and gather ideas for ways the VA can better serve student veterans. PCC was able to showcase its partnerships, including the new Peer Advisors for Veteran Education (PAVE) program and VetSuccess on Campus (VSOC).
The PAVE program is a collaboration between the University of Michigan Depression Center and the Department of Psychiatry and Student Veterans of America. It serves as a peer support service to connect incoming student veterans with student veterans already on campus in order to help them navigate college life, identify challenges they face, refer them to the appropriate resource on or off campus, and provide ongoing support to their academic and personal ventures. Of the 42 PAVE partner campuses nationwide, PCC Sylvania is one of only four community colleges in the program. PCC Sylvania implemented the program in fall 2016.
Meanwhile, the VSOC program aims to help veterans, service members, and their qualified dependents succeed and thrive through a coordinated delivery of on-campus benefits assistance and counseling, leading to completion of their education and preparing them to enter the labor market in viable careers.