By Steven Cardona
ELAC’s Veterans Resource center is now located at D7A, a more spacious area than the previous location.
Although the location is a few yards away from the old one at D7, the staff at the VRC feel that it is more welcoming to students.
There are other resources for students in the D7 building, the transfer center among the few, which causes a lot of foot traffic through the building.
The room that the VRC was located in was toward the back of the building, while the Veterans Counselor, Jessica Peak’s, office was in a separate room closer to the entrance.
Mark Carreon, a VRC staff member, said the layout of the old location gave them a few problems.
Carreon has been working with the VRC for about two years and handles all the social media, marketing and promotional objectives.
He said the change brings a more welcoming environment because the new space is larger and everything is more spread out.
The new location is about a third bigger than before and there are multiple rooms available for more individualized assistance.
“There is more room to give veterans the space they need to make the transition from military to civilian life much smoother,” said Carreon.
He also mentioned that the flow of traffic coming in and out of the resource center is much more systematic because all of the resources they provide have their respective areas within the building allowing them to tend to veterans’ needs easier.
There is more time for one-on-ones with the Veterans Counselor. The VRC now offers veterans a wellness counselor to talk to by making an appointment.
“If veterans need a therapist, then they can come here and talk to someone…” said Carreon.
Carreon said that the biggest benefit the veterans get from the VRC is that it’s like a one-stop shop.
From mental health to academic counseling, to helping navigate online sites that offer financial assistance, or helping veterans seek other resources and benefits they might be able to receive, they can go to the VRC and use these tools and resources.
He said that the best way for veterans to get the best out of their organization is to engage in the events they put together and in the community of veterans they have helped foster on campus.