JOHNSON CITY (March 8, 2013)– Veterans of the U.S. military who are students at East Tennessee State University now have a space on campus they may call their own for study and relaxation.
The grand opening and ribbon-cutting was held today (Friday, March 8) for a new Veterans’ Lounge located in 306 Yoakley Hall.
“The addition of the Veterans’ Lounge will be an invaluable step in our long-term effort to assist our veterans and to accommodate the ever-increasing number of veterans we serve,” said Kevin Flanary, assistant registrar and Veterans Affairs coordinator at ETSU.
Designed for the more than 500 ETSU student veterans and dependents of veterans who are using GI Bill benefits, this lounge will be accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and features a large flat-screen television, living room furniture, computer workstations, a small refrigerator for drinks and snacks, and a resource area with Veterans Affairs literature and brochures, as well as a variety of books and magazines. It will be staffed by work-study students from the ETSU Office of Veterans Affairs, who will monitor the lounge and be available to answer questions pertaining to VA issues.
Flanary says that the lounge may be used not only as a place where veterans can relax, study and bond with each other, but also as a meeting space for the ETSU chapter of the Student Veterans of America (SVA) and small groups of veterans and family members to discuss educational benefits. It may also be used for meetings with local employers who are seeking student veterans for employment.
“At ETSU, we are honored to be one of the top ‘Military Friendly’ institutions in the country,” Flanary said, referring to the distinction ETSU has received for the fourth consecutive year from G.I. Jobs magazine. “We do not take that recognition lightly, and we consider it our duty to support veterans, as well as their dependents. The creation of the new Veterans’ Lounge is one way of saying ‘thank you’ to those who have defended our freedom, and to let them know we sincerely appreciate their sacrifice.”
The lounge was created by the ETSU Office of Veterans Affairs with the support of Dr. Wilsie Bishop, university chief operating officer and vice president for Health Affairs. ETSU’s Facilities Management, Honors College, Registrar’s Office, SVA, Veterans Affairs Standing Committee, ID Services, Office of Information Technology and other campus departments and organizations also played integral roles in its development.
Those wishing to use the facility must visit the ETSU Veterans Affairs office at 101 Burgin E. Dossett Hall to sign a certificate of understanding, which covers the rules and regulations pertaining to the lounge. Veterans Affairs staff will confirm the students’ veteran status and take the appropriate steps to ensure they will have access to the lounge using their student ID cards.
For more information, contact Flanary at (423) 439-6819.