The Fullerton College Veterans Club is hosting its’ first Veterans Celebration Week with activities going on campus from November 4-7.
Veterans Club has put up a wall on campus starting Monday, November 4, memorializing the names of the soldiers and veterans that died. The Vision2Victory Global War on Terror Wall of Remembrance is displayed for all students and staff to view.
Club member Devon Sancho says the purpose of the wall is “to recognize those veterans that have lost their lives from fairly recent wars. From Iraq, to all, to current day.” President Scott Thompson says, “It’s just to bring awareness to student body and faculty. It’s one thing to hear what’s going on and another to visualize it.”
The club will also be showing two documentaries and discussions during the celebration week. “High Ground” is a documentary on soldiers coming home after deployment, and “Restrepo” is on soldiers that are being deployed in the most dangerous part of the world. The present-past view of both documentaries are meant to inform the audiences of the physical and emotional wounds and experiences the soldiers undergo. The documentary discussions can be found in Room 266 on Wednesday, November 6 from 1-2pm.
The student forum is hugely anticipated from the Veterans Club, as this event is new to the celebration week. The forum will include speeches given by student veterans: how they feel and how they are treated among students. Their experiences in school life will be shared among other participants at the forum. The event is meant for the campus and staff and what they can do to better support the student veterans. It will take place in Room 224 on Tuesday, November 5 from 1-2:30 pm.
The Veterans Celebration Week will end with a celebration in the quad on Thursday, November 7 from 11am-2pm. Barbecue and music will be provided for those attending. The celebration will include guest speakers such as the president of the Veterans Club, a Prisoner of War guest, a Vision2Victory member that helped erect the wall, and also Jay Seidel, veteran and professor at Fullerton College.
A candlelight vigil will take place last during the celebration from 5-7pm following a lowering of the flag. The event is open to entire campus community, veterans, and families.
Fullerton College’s Veteran Club members are also busy getting their 3rd Annual Care Package Drive ready and sent out to active duty military.
The care package count has improved since last year’s 2nd Annual Care Package Drive. “Last year, we sent out 75 care packages. We just decided to keep that going,” says Thompson. The number is hoping to increase every year and this year they are shooting for at least 100.
The packages go directly to people that are overseas, active duty military as well as friends and family of Fullerton College’s students and staff. Members of the Veterans Club put the packages together and mail them out themselves.
Local groups outside of campus help out the club with donations and funding. Thompson states that the event “brings people together” and their goal is to make different parts of campus aware of the club activities and events. The Veterans Resource Center is located in Room 518 and open to donations.
The celebration week has improved significantly since last year for the club, especially since it has been extended from one day, to a week. The club has then added the student forum and candlelight vigil in addition to the documentaries and care package drive.