Who’s Who On Campus: Meet Director of Veteran and Military Services Raul E. Santana Nuñez


Photo credit/ Courtesy of Raul Santana Nuñez

Raul Santana Nuñez is the new Director of Military and Veteran Services. Santana Nuñez hopes to use his new position to support student veterans in reaching their education goals.

Eric Spivak, Staff Writer

There is a new face in the Office of Military and Veteran Services this semester.

Raúl Santana Nuñez said he hopes to use his new position as the Director of Military and Veteran Services to help student veterans achieve their higher education goals. Santana Nuñez said he received a lot of support as a student veteran at Bloomsburg University and hoped to express his gratitude by giving back in his new position.

While at Bloomsburg, Santana Nuñez earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees and was involved with student admissions and alcohol awareness networks. Santana Nuñez also currently serves in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard where he has served for six years.

As Director of Military and Veteran Services, Santana Nuñez certifies students who may or may not have a background in the United States Military. Sometimes students are directly involved, such as being service members. Other times, they are indirectly involved, such as being beneficiaries of the military.

Santana Nuñez said he is starting to settle inside the Veterans Resource Center, a house on campus where services are provided for student veterans.

“I’m happy to be here and to get to meet the staff as well as the students,” said Santana Nuñez.

Normally, the Office of Veteran and Military Services provides a space for student veterans to gather and get to know one another. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Santana Nuñez said it has become more difficult.

Santana Nuñez said that not seeing students on campus as much has affected who he can support.

“I like to get to know who I’m working with,” said Santana Nuñez. “I’m trying to adapt my practices and reach out to students and just let them know that I am always here, whenever they need me they can always reach out to me.”

As the Director of Veteran and Military Services, Nuñez works closely with Sr. Jane Snyder, assistant director of retention management and financial advising, whose job includes working with benefits that help pay student veterans’ tuition.

Snyder said the life experiences of the members of Military and Veteran Services make them very attentive to getting involved with events and groups on and off-campus, but that COVID-19 has severely impacted the types of activities that can be held.

“[COVID-19 has] affected programming just like it affected the programming for all of the clubs in terms of holding activities that help to build up their membership and support their services,” said Snyder. “[Veteran and Military Services is] very community-minded in terms of getting engaged with the larger area community . . . they try to promote more of a community atmosphere rather than a veteran atmosphere.”

One of Santana Nuñez’s goals is to open up the Veteran’s Resource Center to the surrounding community. Santana Nunez said he hopes to foster communities getting together and getting to know each other.

“When I came into higher education I received a lot of help and I want to be able to give back,” said Nunez.

Contact the writer: [email protected]