Bethany Hall dedicated as home of Veterans Resource Center


Photo credit/ Erin Yaeger

Vincent Schultz and Erin Yeager

Marywood University dedicated Bethany Hall as the new home of the Veterans Resource Center on Monday, Sept. 15.

The ceremony took place outside Bethany Hall. The new space will accommodate a number of services including The Office of Military and Veteran Services and the Renewal-Veteran Education and Transition Services (R-VETS) resources, along with Student Veteran Alliance (SVA).

Lauren Williams, the director of military and veteran services, said she enjoys working with veterans on campus.

“I cherish each and every one of them,” Williams said, “for the sacrifices they have made through service and continue to make each day to be able to pursue their education here on campus.”

Marywood’s SVA was awarded a grant from the National Organization of Veteran Advocates (NOVA), Student Veterans of America, and The Home Depot Foundation, through the VetCenter Initiative. Grant funds have helped to construct and establish veteran-specific resource centers on campuses all across the country.

In an interview, Sr. Anne Munley, I.H.M., Ph.D., president of Marywood, said that the Veterans Resource Center is an important addition to the community.

“I think the reason Marywood is so committed to this is that we recognize the service our young men and women have made for the entire nation, for all of us,” said Munley.

Munley also spoke about the many services veterans can provide and the importance of highlighting these skills.

“[Veterans] have enormous leadership skills that they’ve picked up through their various services, and what we want to do is to help be a bridge to enable them to realize education and hopes and dreams. So a center like this is a way of offering the kind of support that will make their transition to academic life as smooth as possible,” said Munley.

In an interview, Ed Faatz, president of Friends of the Forgotten NEPA, expressed the importance of the dedication and having resources available to transitioning veterans.

“It is extremely important to have this [center],” said Faatz. “When vets come back from service, it’s very difficult for them to relate to the normal, average person. A facility like this will allow them to talk to other people that went through the same experiences.”

The new Veterans Resource Center is a place where veterans, their families, and Marywood’s staff, faculty, administration, and student body can build relationships and exchange personal stories, experiences, and the different services the students and veterans share in the community.

“We are a family,” said Williams. “A dysfunctional one at times, but a family nonetheless. I have their back and they have mine, and it’s a blessing in every sense of the word.”