Role and Company
Veterans Advisor & School Certifying Official , NORMANDALE COMMUNITY COLLEGE
17 years experience in education
I have worked in higher education for the past 17 years, and 14 of those years included duties of School Certifying Office for VA education benefits.
The term "Veterans Advisor" is all encompassing here - admissions, academic planning, transferring in, transferring out, a little bit of financial aid and financial literacy, and of course VA education benefits. I'm also supervisor to students using the VA work-study program.
Here is my philosophy when I comes to serving students:
Doing the work of a school certifying official is so much more than shuffling paperwork and knowing the rules of VA education benefits. When done with care and tact, it becomes a ministry to students. I customized my work with layers of outreach, compassion, and gratitude for those who have served our country. I believe in humbly serving the needs of those who show up at my door and loving my fellow human beings so they can be the best versions of themselves.
At Augsburg University in Minneapolis, MN, my two mains areas of expertise were transfer credits and VA Education Benefits. In the absence of a formal department on our campus dedicated to serving military members and Veterans, my role of VA School Certifying Official morphed into an one-stop-shop based out of my office. I have been known to juggle many hats as I work with these students - advisor, cheerleader, listening ear, impromptu social work, party planner, cookie baker, etc. I probably shouldn't pick favorites, but it is true that this student population is indeed was the best part of my job.