Maine Memo — November 10

Dear members of the University of Maine and University of Maine at Machias communities,

On the eve of Veterans Day I want to remind everyone of the purpose of this day, originally launched following the end of World War I. The United States first celebrated Veterans Day (then called Armistice Day) on Nov. 11, 1919. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, this day is meant to be “A celebration to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.”

In observance of Veterans Day, classes will not be held tomorrow, Nov. 11, at the University of Maine and the University of Maine at Machias.

Today, more than 17 million veterans live, study and work in the United States, according to the U.S. Census. In Maine, there are approximately 114,000. This fall, 236 veterans, reservists and National Guard service members are studying at UMaine. So, too, are 204 people who are dependents or spouses of veterans. At UMM, 25 veterans or dependents of veterans are enrolled in courses. I want to thank service people in all branches of the armed forces for their bravery, contributions, sacrifice and service, and to particularly offer my gratitude to those who have served.

Due to the pandemic, UMM isn’t hosting Veterans Day events this week, but campus officials are planning a lunch for student veterans and their families in the spring semester, if it is safe to do so. UMaine’s events are listed here: Many thanks to all the campus partners who planned events to commemorate Veterans Day.

As I close this tribute to our veterans, here are some suggestions for celebrating and honoring them.

  • Educating ourselves about the experiences, unique challenges and obstacles that veterans and those close to them face.
  • Hearing and telling veterans’ powerful stories.
  • Finding thoughtful ways to show appreciation for veterans on campus, in Maine, across the U.S. and around the world.
  • Providing support to those who have protected us and sacrificed so much to do so.


Joan Ferrini-Mundy