UMaine Celebrating Veterans with Week of Events

Veterans at the University of Maine will be honored during a series of activities that include seminars and panel discussions, an information fair, and an appearance by Maine first lady Ann LePage.

The activities, which have been coordinated by the UMaine Office of Veterans Education and Transition Services (V.E.T.S.) and University of Maine Veterans Association, will start at noon Monday, Nov. 5, with an opening ceremony on the University Mall. UMaine Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students Robert Dana will offer remarks during the ceremony and participants will have an opportunity to hang a yellow ribbon on the Mall to honor a past or present veteran. The ceremony will be followed by a reception in the V.E.T.S. office in Room 143 of the Memorial Union.

Tony Llerena, the V.E.T.S. coordinator and school certifying official for veterans, said an event such as Veterans Week is essential because it gives the campus community an opportunity to say thank veterans for their service and sacrifice.

“Veterans are an important part of our campus,” says Llerena, who works as a computer systems and applications support specialist in the Division of Student Affairs. “They bring knowledge and a unique set of life experiences that add to the classroom experience for other students and community at large. Many of them are very humble about their service but are aware of any recognition given to the entire veteran community.”

There will be a display of art made by veterans open all week in the Spirit Room of the Union.

Other events this week:

Tuesday, Nov. 6

Veterans Awareness Panel, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Coe Room, Memorial Union. Events include speaks and resume-writing workshops. Free pizza will be served.

Wednesday, Nov. 7

Veterans Information Fair, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Bumps Room, Memorial Union. Free refreshments. A chance to ask questions about veterans benefits, disability adjustments, career availability and more. Several agencies related to veterans’ interests will have tables.

Thursday, Nov. 8

Cole Land Transportation Museum Walking Sticks, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., V.E.T.S. office, Memorial Union. Bring in a DD-214 (proof of release or discharge) and receive a Maine-made maple walking stick from the Cole Land Transportation Museum in Bangor.

V.E.T.S. 2nd Annual Chili Cookoff, Noon to 2 p.m., Bumps Room. $5 to enter, $1 to taste. Proceeds go to Toys for Tots. Cash prizes for the winners.

Friday, Nov. 9:

UMaine Veterans Luncheon, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Bangor Room, Memorial Union. Guest speaker Ann LePage. Hosted by UMaine Veterans Association. Lunch is free and no RSVP is required.

Saturday, Nov. 10:

2nd Annual ROTC 5K race, 8 a.m., Alfond Stadium. Race registration is $10, preregister at the UMaine Army ROTC office (east end of the University of Maine Field House) or on race day at Alfond Stadium. Proceeds support Wounded Warriors and the 20th Maine Society.

Military Appreciation Day, University of Maine football game vs. Georgia State, 2 p.m., Alfond Stadium. The 195th Army National Guard band will perform alongside the Black Bear Marching Band. Free tickets are available to veterans, military members and their families. Military members contact Kyra Darling, by Wednesday, Nov. 7. Veterans contact the V.E.T.S. office at (207) 581-1316 for tickets.

Monday, Nov. 12

Veterans Day parade, Bangor.

Veterans Day barbeque on the University Mall, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Donations go to University of Maine Veterans Association.

Contact: Jessica Bloch, (207) 581-3777