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Veteran’s Club Interest Meeting Scheduled for Feb. 14

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Megan Braun, Writer

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There are 25 students on the Catawba College campus who have served in the military, and many others who have parents or friends who have served as well. Thanks to Catawba College junior, and former Marine, Chad Springer, there will now be club on campus for veterans and their supporters.

The club, entitled the Catawba College Veteran’s Organization, will be a support and connection group to build unity between students and veterans, as well as provide first-hand experiences to people interested in serving in the military.

“There is a large cultural and age gap between veterans and (traditional) students, so the goal is to acknowledge that we are both here and can work together to achieve the common goal of graduating and becoming assets to society,” Springer said.

The club, which will soon hold its first interest meeting, was an idea that stemmed from President Brien Lewis. Springer was contacted by Lewis to see if he would be interested in starting something for veterans on campus. Springer jumped at the opportunity, but said that he would only do it if everyone on campus could be involved. He said that after working with Lewis on other projects and with other organizations, having Lewis trust him with leading a club is “cool.”

Springer, along with the club’s faculty advisor, David Jones, and Bob Rice, commander for American Legion Post 342, have generated lots of ideas for community service projects and learning opportunities for both veterans and students involved in the club. Springer said he would really like to start placing wreaths on veteran’s graves at the VA hospital, as well as begin hosting a veteran’s day luncheon on campus. He also would like for veterans to be recognized at sporting events and be a part of the games by walking out on the field or court with the flags.

The club will not only be for service though. Springer believes that there is a learning aspect as well, since a lot of students do not know a lot about the military or their customs. He wants to teach involved students how to properly fold and respect the American flag.

“A lot of people don’t know that each fold of the flag has a different meaning,” Springer said.

Springer also said that each branch of the military has a so called “birthday,” otherwise known as the day that the specific branch was founded. To celebrate these days, Springer would like to host a “birthday party,” teaching everyone the customs and details of each specific branch of the military.

“I really just want for there to be more awareness and information,” Springer said. “I would even like for there to be community involvement and have some publicity.”

Springer also wants to order special tassels for graduating veterans. The tassels would be red, white, and blue, giving acknowledgement to those who have served in the military and who are also graduating as “non-traditional” students.

The club will hold its first interest meeting on February 14th at 11:00 am in Tom Smith Auditorium. If you are interested and cannot make the meeting or you have any questions, contact csspringe14@catawba.eu.

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Veteran’s Club Interest Meeting Scheduled for Feb. 14