2nd Annual NEK Veterans Summit at Lyndon State March 15

2nd Annual NEK Veterans Summit at Lyndon State March 15

2nd Annual NEK Veterans Summit at Lyndon State March 15

Event Includes National Student Vet Leader, "Stand Down," and Mobile Vet Center

February 20, 2014

The Lyndon State College Veterans Club, in partnership with the LSC Veterans Student Support Committee and other veteran service organizations, will be hosting the 2nd Annual NEK Veterans Summit at the college on Saturday, March 15. The purpose is to bring veterans, their families, and veteran service organizations together to build relationships, strengthen connections, and enhance the regional support network.

Deborah Amdur, director of the White River Junction VA Medical Center, will deliver the opening address at 9:30 a.m. Amdur will discuss developments taking place at the White River Junction VA Medical Center which will enhance services to veterans; she will also take questions from the audience. Prior to coming to Vermont, she was chief consultant for Care Management and Social Work Service with overall responsibility for five national programs in the Department of Veterans Affairs: National Social Work, Caregiver Support, Family Hospitality, Post Deployment Care Management, and the VA Liaison Program.

The Keynote Speaker is D. Wayne Robinson, president and chief executive officer of Student Veterans of America. Robinson rose to the rank of command sergeant major in the U.S. Army and graduated from every enlisted leadership course offered by the Army. He served as the liaison and operations sergeant for Delta Force. He has over 39 awards recognizing his valuable contributions including the Order of Saint Barbara, the Glen E. Morrell Medallion, and six Meritorious Service Medals.

He was previously a partner and head of New Business Development at Drexel Hamilton Investment Partners, a veteran-owned Wall Street firm that provides investment advisory and management services. Robinson received an MBA from The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business and is a graduate of Wall Street Warfighters; a program that helps high-potential service-disabled veterans transition into finance roles.

There will be a variety of breakout sessions offered throughout the day including "PTSD and TBI," "therapy dogs and PTSD," "women veterans," "veterans employment benefits and opportunities," "government consulting and entrepreneurship," "navigating veterans benefits, education benefits 101 for student veterans," and a student veterans panel." A free lunch will be provided to all registrants. Closing remarks are at 2:30 p.m., followed by one last chance to connect with service organizations.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will be hosting a one-day "stand down" as part of the summit. A stand down is a community-based intervention program designed to help homeless veterans. According to the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, the program has become recognized as the most valuable outreach tool to help homeless veterans. The stand down is a collaborative event involving community providers who help connect homeless veterans with needed food, shelter, clothing, health screenings, and VA and Social Security benefits counseling. It also provides referrals to other necessary services such as housing, employment and substance abuse treatment.

A Mobile Vet Center will be on campus for the summit. The Vet Center is a 30 foot long bus and is operated by the White River Junction Vet Center. It provides readjustment counseling and information resources to combat veterans. Like community-based veteran centers, Mobile Vet Centers focus on services that help combat veterans make the transition between military and civilian life.

More than 40 veteran service organizations will have information booths providing a one-stop-shop for veterans services, clubs, and resources.

Advance registration for the summit is required; attendance is limited to 300 participants. To register or to learn more, visit http://www.lyndonstate.edu/VeteransSummit. For more information, contact LSC Veterans Club advisor Thom Anderson at 802 626.6208 or Thomas.Anderson@lyndonstate.edu.

In conjunction with the summit, the LSC Veterans Club, Q Burke, and the LSC Ski & Ride Club are sponsoring the first annual Ian Muller Rail Jam March 14 at Mid-Burke Lodge. All proceeds go to the Ian Muller Memorial Scholarship; an annual $1,000 scholarship to an LSC student veteran. Q Burke, headed by Army veteran Ary Quiros, is offering free lift tickets all day March 14 to veterans and their families.

Ian Muller, a Danville, Vt., native, attended LSC prior to enlisting in the Marine Corps. An avid bodybuilder, athlete, and ski instructor at Burke Mountain, Muller was killed during combat operations in Helmand Provence, Afghanistan, in March, 2011. Muller often volunteered to take the dangerous lead position during combat patrols; he said he did it because many of his colleagues had wives and children, and he did not. Donations to the scholarship can be made by contacting Sara Lussier at Lyndon State College, 802 626-6426 or sara.lussier@lyndonstate.edu