AACC honors veterans throughout November


Photo by Brandon Hamilton

AACC’s Color Guard raises the U.S. flag during a Veterans Day ceremony, held on Nov. 9.

Michael Garvey, Reporter

American flags lined AACC’s walkways and veterans received discounts and advising sessions throughout November in honor of Veterans Day.

Veterans Day ceremony
At a ceremony on Nov. 9, Marine veteran and Student Veteran Association President Brandi Mack told the audience the Military/Veteran Resource Center at AACC helped him “transition from soldier to student.”
“I have felt welcomed by the other military veteran students here at AACC,” said Mack, a second-year computer science major. “I am grateful that we have a space on campus to connect with each other and receive support.”
AACC’s Color Guard performed a flag raising ceremony, then campus faculty and staff read the names of veterans in the AACC community.
The ceremony concluded with a trumpet performance of taps—a tune the U.S. military plays during flag ceremonies at dusk and military funerals—and a reception in the CALT atrium.
“Hearing taps after so long took me back to being on-ship,” Shanelle Jones, a veteran and first-year public health major, said.

Discounts and donations
HCAT donated half of the money raised from its Empty Bowls fundraiser on Nov. 2—$2,048—to the veterans’ center food pantry, located near the veterans’ center in the Truxal Library. The other half went to AACC’s food pantry.
AACC veterans also received discounts across campus all week, such as coffee from Chick-fil-A, a free drink with a sandwich purchase from Subway and free chips and a drink from the Hawk’s Nest Grill & Deli.
“It was nice to be appreciated and acknowledged,” said veteran Carlen Clendenin, a first-year public health major.
The bookstore also gave veterans a 20 percent discount off of one item during the week of Nov. 6.

Recognition of service
AACC faculty placed American flags around the Quad, clock tower and amphitheater, and along the bridge to West Campus.
The Truxal Library displayed a collection of military memorabilia from Nov. 1-30. Items inlcuded medals, photographs, uniforms and a flag flown over the American embassy in Baghdad, Iraq.
Veteran faculty, staff and students donated or lent all of the items for the display.
Children in the Child Development Center painted posters thanking student veterans for their service, which library staff displayed outside the veterans’ center in the Student Union and at the Arundel Mills campus.

The veterans’ center honored American prisoners of war and those missing in action with a special table in the SUN Dining Hall.
Each piece of the table had meaning, such as an empty chair which represented service members who can’t join the meals, as did an inverted wine glass. A black napkin stood for the emptiness left in the hearts of their families, while a candle represented hope for a reunion.

Advising and assistance
Student veterans gathered in the veterans’ center on Nov. 7 for free Mission BBQ and to meet with AACC Student Veterans of America representatives.
Veteran students also met with advisers in the veteran’s center to discuss class registration and help them certify their degree programs through the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.
Employment services at the Arundel Mills campus led a workshop to help create resumes.