BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs is teaming up with higher education leaders in the state to launch a program for student veterans.
The LaVetCorps program will open 30 veteran resource centers on campuses across the state to help veterans returning from active-duty military service transition home to colleges and local communities.
“The men and women who selflessly dedicate their lives to secure the safety and freedoms of our state and nation deserve every opportunity to prepare themselves for the transition to civilian life, and I’m proud of the partnerships that will help them continue to achieve their goals,” said Gov. John Bel Edwards. “This initiative will benefit both veterans and communities and thereby our state.”
More than 8,300 Louisiana veterans and their dependents bring in over $185 million in federal dollars to the state’s higher education communities each year through G.I. Bill funding.
“Part of our mission has always been to provide post-secondary educational and workforce training opportunities for veterans and their families,” said Dr. Monty Sullivan, Louisiana Community and Technical College System President. “Today’s announcement reinforces our mission and creates a unified approach that ensures the men and women of our military have the wrap-around services and access to additional resources that will support them in reaching their educational and career attainment goals.”
At each of the 30 centers, a trained LaVetCorps navigator will mentor student veterans in their transition, working to increase access to their state and federal benefits, and to build a veteran community. These navigators will provide training and support to college faculty, staff and administration to increase awareness of student veterans’ needs and veteran culture. LaVetCorps navigators will also organize community service projects benefiting both on- and off-campus veterans.
“The Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs is committed to partnering with agencies that can help us develop innovative ways to help our veterans make a streamlined transition into college life,” said LDVA Secretary Joey Strickland. “These men and women are not your typical college students. They have seen and done things that most cannot relate to, but we at the LDVA can, and we are finding ways to help them be successful in their academic studies through these LaVetCorps vet centers.”
If you’re interested in learning how you can become an LDVA-trained LaVetCorp navigator, click here.