Veteran Center gets a new design

Michael Garvey , Reporter

Student veterans are working together to succeed in the newly designed Veteran Resource Center in Truxal Library room 112.

The resource center is overseen by Air Force veteran Harlan Harrell, the schools Military/Veterans Student Success and Retention Advisor. This new location is his creation.

Harrell says, “I designed it to be more than a hang out. I designed it were it can accommodate the military scholar, the veteran scholar.”

The center is broken into two sections.

The first room has three computer work stations. Snacks are provided thanks to donations made by few school staff groups.

Veteran relevant educational resource literature can be found throughout the room.

The second room is called The Bunker. Instead of doubling the space available for the main resource room Harrell felt it was important to have a space that was specifically designed to allow veterans in distress a place they could feel safe.

The Bunker takes up half of the space reserved for the Veterans Resource Center.

It is designed to be a calming area for student veterans to relax if they become overwhelmed, or just need some quiet time alone while on campus.

It was created using the recommended standards for treating a veteran suffering from a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI).

Dimmer switches were installed so that those sensitive the bright lights could be comfortable, but not have to sit in the dark. The walls are painted a specific gray to limit overstimulation consistent with best practices of a TBI room.

The center is staffed by students who served in the military.

Shanelle Jones, a Navy veteran, and first year Public Health student works as a peer counselor at the Resource Center, said “I enjoy seeing the process”. “To see that franticness that they may have had when they first come in, to see the relieve, and to see that schedule in their hand, is just rewarding. It’s really rewarding. It feels good to step in and give people piece of mind”

Army veteran Drew Chrostowski, first year business administration student, and peer counselor at the Veteran Resource Center goes to the center because, “It is a great environment with an opportunity to meet fellow veterans.”