Felician SVA Chapter Awarded $10,000 to Renovate Veterans Center

Felician student veterans holding banner in parade

Walking onto a college campus after serving in the nation’s military can be a challenging transition for student veterans. To help ease the return to civilian life, The Home Depot Foundation and Student Veterans of America (SVA) awarded the SVA chapter at Felician University $10,000 to make considerable improvements to its Veterans Center on the University’s Lodi campus.  Felician currently has 43 undergraduate and 19 graduate veterans enrolled in its academic programs.

For the fifth consecutive year, Felician University has been named by G.I. Jobs magazine as a Top Military Friendly School for its commitment to providing a supportive environment for armed forces veterans and their families. Felician’s inclusion on the list ranks it in the top 15 percent of all colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide. As a military friendly institution, Felician offers dedicated financial benefits to veterans and their families and has created distinctively tailored programs to help them achieve their academic goals.

“On behalf of our veteran students, faculty and staff, we are so grateful to the SVA and its corporate sponsor, Home Depot, for enabling a major renovation of the University’s veterans center,” said Felician president, Dr. Anne Prisco. “In keeping with our Franciscan mission and values, the Veterans Club ensures an easier transition to civilian life by providing an environment where students closely interact with their peers and have an opportunity to share experiences with one another.”

The Club also offers students an opportunity to learn about the various support services and resources available at the University.  For many veterans, the organization provides opportunities for members to socialize, study, and connect with students of similar background.

Among other initiatives, the Veterans Club at Felician University is working with Project Rebirth, a resilience resource for all who serve community and country, and its Project Cohort, which is a proven method for treating PTSD through adventure therapy. Throughout the year, the Veterans Club also participates in 5K runs/walks, community events, veteran specific internships, veteran job fairs, VA workshops, on campus veteran events and a special Veterans Day ceremony. 

In 2016, the Veterans Club at Felician had the honor of being invited to march in the New York City Veterans Day Parade and more recently the local American Legion Memorial Day Parade. The Club also participates with Midnight Run, an organization that serves the New York City homeless, by organizing clothing and simple needs collection that they deliver to specific areas where homeless veterans live.

Student Veterans of America and The Home Depot Foundation teamed up in 2014 to launch the Vet Center Initiative, offering SVA chapters a chance to compete for up to $10,000 in grant money to build or renovate a veteran center. By 2015, 61 campuses earned $500,000 to build or rehabilitate veteran centers that benefit more than 30,000 student veterans. This year, 50 campus communities were awarded grants of up to $10,000.

About Student Veterans of America

SVA is a 501(c)(3) non-profit coalition of more than 1,300 student veteran chapters, representing over 540,000 veterans in higher education, across the country. SVA's mission is to provide military veterans with the resources, support, and advocacy to ease veteran and active military students' transition into higher education and leverage military experience to launch successful careers in high-demand fields after graduation. For more information, visit the Student Veterans of America website and follow on Twitter.