From Boots to Books: Support for Purdue Calumet Veterans and Student Service Members
The Educational Opportunity Programs submitted a grant application to the Military Family Research Institute at Purdue University, West Lafayette as part of its Operation Diploma initiative. Operation Diploma, supported by the Lilly Endowment, is designed to assist institutions of higher education in Indiana strengthen their efforts to support academic persistence and success among student service members and veterans. The new program, From Boots to Books: The Veterans and Student Service Members Academic Assistance Program (FBBP), has as its mission to create a community of university personnel, students, and communities that provide support services that increase the likelihood of veterans and student service members completing their educational goals.
Combinations of services such as tutoring, academic monitoring, field experiences, and counseling will be provided according to each participant’s assessed individual need in order to enhance participants’ retention and successful completion of his/her undergraduate degree. In short, the program staff is committed to assisting veterans and student service members transition from “an environment where vigilance and mistrust were crucial to survival, into an environment where openness and trust are essential” to success.
The FBBP will become a function of the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Educational Opportunity Programs’ area. Roy Hamilton will serve as the Project Director and Akili Shakur will serve as Project Assistant Director. Funds have been budgeted to cover the employment of a part-time person (Veterans Ombudsman) to assist in the implementation of the Project. Purdue University Calumet students, faculty, staff, and community members have agreed to serve on the FBBP advisory council.