Cal Poly Pomona community members showed their commitment to supporting veteran students this Tuesday at the annual Veterans’ Day event.
More than 100 people attended the event at the Pancakes which were covered in red, white, and blue decorations: balloon arches, bows, flags, and vases. Sarah Borchardt, a music education student and Kellogg Chamber Singer, stepped up and started off the ceremonies by singing the National Anthem.
Student veterans Michael Bailey, Joel Solis, and Michael Landeros spoke at the event.
Solis discussed his time at Cal Poly Pomona and experience as a veteran.
“I’m honored to call myself a Cal Poly Pomona student and veteran,” Solis said. “I was 18 when I joined the Marine Corps. I didn’t know exactly which direction I was heading, but the Marine Corps gave me skills and traits that I’ll take with me the rest of my life… The things I utilized as a sergeant I still utilize as a student at Cal Poly Pomona.”
He also related how much the Veteran’s Resource Center has helped him.
“I’m so thankful that we have the Veterans’ Resource Center here, because when I transferred to Cal Poly Pomona I was trying to figure out how to step up to the next level, the professional level. They helped me get those pieces together, they helped me collaborate with a community of veterans and students. I can’t say thank you enough.”
Bailey, who was MC for the event, introduced the Vet Center Van. The van will visit campus regularly to provide veterans individual, group, and family counseling; medical referrals; employment assistance; community education and more.
Betty Ortiz, Cal Poly Pomona’s first lady and advocate for the Veterans’ Resource Center, took the stage to thank student veterans for attending Cal Poly Pomona.
“We can never do enough for the veterans that are students on our campus,” she said. “Thank you for coming to our school – you make it a whole lot better.”
Marten denBoer, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, pointed out that there are more than 400 veterans on-campus, and more than 100 graduated this past June.
“Often I hear from faculty about how they love having vets in their class,” denBoer said. “They help move learning forward. They’re motivated, they’re goal-oriented, they know they’re here on-campus for a purpose… They’ve made a commitment to serve others, and they bring that commitment into class as well. They serve as a model for other students, and their energy and work ethic raises the bar for all of our students.”
Vice President of Student Affairs Doug Freer also spoke, and led the assembly in a round of applause for all the veterans present.
For more information about the resources available for veterans on campus, visit www.cpp.edu/~veterans/.