Source: Education Advisory Board
As a non-veteran student, you may be wondering how you can help to make our campus a welcoming environment for student veterans. It is important that non-veteran students are informed about common misperceptions regarding veterans, inappropriate questions that many students ask veterans, and the reality of who our student veterans actually are.
Stereotypes of Veterans
-From the southern US
-Fought in combat
-Have mental health issues
-Less academically prepared
-"Have you ever shot or killed someone?"
-"You were in Iraq, what do you think of the war?"
-"Did you see anyone die?"
-"How is the war doing? Are we winning?"
-"Do you own a gun?"
-1 out of 10 veterans is female
-26% of all military undergrads are female
-60% of the nation's vets live in urban areas
-Over 1/3 of the veteran population lives in six states: California, Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, New York, and Ohio
-It is estimated that 20% of the Operation Iraqi Freedom(OIF)/Operation Enduring Freedom(OEF) forces will suffer from PTSD
-20% of OIF/OEF may have traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
How can you help welcome our veterans at UMD?
Become a Veteran Advocate: be responsible for understanding veterans' needs and educating others about the reality of who our veterans are. You don't need special training to do this--you can use our website and do informal research to educate yourself about the challenges student veterans face. If you hear other students discussing veterans inappopriately, speak up! Let them know the truths and misconceptions about vets.
Contact the Center for Access and Success! We are always looking for students who are interested in getting involved with the various populations on our campus, including veterans.