You can now listen to Episode 6 of “Conversations with Student Affairs,” the podcast managed by the Student Affairs team at Penn State World Campus in collaboration with our many colleagues and partners across the University’s Student Affairs teams.
Title: Connecting Our Veterans
Participating staff members: Rose Petrunyak, academic adviser at Penn State World Campus; Mac Engstrand, president of the World Campus Military Service Organization; and Sydney Klainberg, World Campus Student Affairs Co-Curricular Program grad assistant.
Summary: As Veterans Day approaches, this is a good opportunity to recognize and pay tribute to veterans who served in the U.S. Armed Forces. During this episode, we honor our veterans with a moment of silence, followed by an acknowledgement for veteran and Penn State alum Lt. Michael P. Murphy. Key points we discuss include the importance of involvement as a student and the value of making connections through community.
- World Campus Student Organizations — find out how to join any of the student clubs and organizations, including the Military Service Organization.
- Penn State Office of Veterans Affairs and Services — learn about programs and services available to military students, veterans, and their families.
- Military Appreciation Week — review events and activities planned during this week when we honor veterans and members of the military.
Three interesting or helpful takeaways from this episode:
You can help our military organization grow and evolve. The World Campus Military Service Organization is a relatively new organization, one that is still being shaped and refined. That makes this the perfect time to get involved, as you can play an important role in shaping the vision of the group and help launch new projects.
Penn State has a long legacy of supporting and honoring military students. “Penn State’s military community has been robust for years and have done a lot of things like the Murph Challenge and events centered around Veterans Day and Military Appreciation Week, so it’s certainly possible in the future to see opportunities for the Military Service Organization to collaborate and work together with the greater military community at the University,” Rose says. “I feel like the sky’s the limit if a student can come up with an idea of a way to feel connected or get involved from a distance.”
Getting involved can help you in and out of the classroom. “Attending school is a lot more than what we learn in class,” says Sydney. “Getting involved in student organizations has positive benefits for students inside the classroom as well as in professional development. Some benefits include opportunities to work with peers, meet people with similar interests, build leadership and communication skills, and give back to your community. You also can have more motivation in classes and better time management skills. Even if you don’t feel like you can attend regular meetings, there are still lots of ways to get involved.” Perhaps most importantly, getting involved helps you feel more connected. “You are not alone,” Sydney says. “You are a valuable member of the Penn State community no matter where you are.”