To better serve UNT's estimated 2,500 student veterans and their dependents, UNT will implement new programs in spring 2012, including a textbook loan program and veteran sensitivity training sessions. The programs assist veterans in transition to becoming university students and bring awareness to faculty and staff members of issues regarding veterans.
"These veteran-friendly programs will help new and returning student veterans to transition to campus life and help them to reach their educational goals," says Mona Hicks, assistant vice president for Campus Life and founding director of the UNT Veterans Center. "These programs represent a high level of service that we want to give our student veterans, who are great models for the rest of our student population and an added value to the campus community."
The Boots-to-Books Textbook Loan Program will enable student veterans to purchase or rent books and course materials before they receive military benefits. The short-term loan program was established as a resource for student veterans should they encounter any delays in the processing or disbursement of financial aid from the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, Hazelwood Act or other federal programs. Student veterans may be eligible to receive a maximum amount of $500 as a line of credit with the UNT Bookstore each fall and spring semester. Loan amounts will vary based on need.
Student veterans must be enrolled in the current semester for which they are applying, and only students enrolled at the Denton campus are eligible to apply. The loan program is not intended to serve as an alternative loan resource between financial aid disbursement dates. For more information, contact the Student Money Management Center or call 940-369-7761.
"One of the primary goals of the UNT Veterans Center is to help remove barriers that impede student veterans' success," Hicks says. "The Boots-to-Books program will provide another outlet, maximize existing resources, and assist student veterans in the transition to campus life, where financial challenges are often a hurdle for college students. It is part of the continued collaborative effort to serve those at UNT who have served our country."
In addition, UNT Veterans Center will offer veteran sensitivity training sessions to increase faculty and staff members' sensitivity to student veterans and provide training that can enhance the professional and academic development for student veterans. Participants will learn facts about UNT's military community and military-friendly initiatives and resources. They also will learn about critical issues facing veterans and sensitivity techniques through the UNT CARE Team model.
Sessions will be open to UNT students and student organizations. For more information or to schedule a session, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 940-369-8021.
About UNT Veterans Center
In collaboration with many university departments, the UNT Veterans Center aims to serve as a safe place to help student veterans navigate university resources for academic success. The Veterans Center seeks to help remove barriers for student veterans through an emphasis on transition support, to provide connection to resources both on and off campus, and to give due recognition of the service members in our UNT community through programs and scholarships. UNT opened the Veterans Center in fall 2009.
G.I. Jobs magazine has recognized UNT as a Military Friendly School for two years in a row. UNT also has been ranked as a best school for veterans by Military Times EDGE, a Military Times newspaper, for two consecutive years.
Elizabeth Smith with UNT News Service can be reached at Elizabeth.Smith@unt.edu.