There are currently over 400 veterans and dependents, the spouses or children of those that have served in the armed forces, that attend Florida A&M University. Majority of these students are over the age of 25, have families or mental health disorders. These are the non-traditional students of the university.
The Military and Veterans Affair center, located at 640 Gamble St, houses veterans and dependents. The facility offers a computer lab, study rooms, and a lounge. The Veterans Affair center allows for veterans to be around like-minded individuals. This helps relieve some of the stress that the students have.
Geoffrey Gary, a third-year pre-physical therapy student that served five years in the army, feels as though FAMU could be more inclusive.
“Compared to others schools, FAMU could do more with helping veterans feel more inclusive in the social aspects of the school,” said Gary.
Gary was diagnosed with major depressive disorder and anxiety while in the army, “The VA center has helped with stress, it can be difficult at times dealing with family, trauma, and school.”
Melody Traylor, a candidate for masters in social work, would like her peers and the staff of FAMU to understand the obligations of those who are currently serving while being students at the same time.
“The VA center offers a green zone training that I believe the staff of FAMU should go through,” Traylor said.
Green Zone training was created to promote awareness and education about military culture and service members trying to re-acclimate to civilian and college life.
Kevin Channey, a third-year African-American history student that served 31 years and six months in the army, is another student that uses the facility of the Veterans Affair center.
When asked if FAMU veteran services were utilized effectively, “FAMU Veterans are here for the purpose of achieving their academic goals and are a good source of information who bring practical life experience both in and out of the classroom.” said Channey.
The Veterans Affair is opened to all of those that are servicemen or servicewomen, veterans, and dependents. It is not a recruiting service but a facility to assist those who have served and their families.