The director of veterans services at Texas A&M University was recognized this month by the National Association for Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education (NASPA) for his passion, dedication and service to military-related students on the campus.
Col. Gerald “Jerry” L. Smith ’82, USMC (Ret.), Director of Veteran Resource and Support Center (VRSC) and director of Veterans Services for the Texas A&M University System, received the NASPA VKC Supra and Ultra Award at that organization’s military-related student symposium in Seattle Feb. 2-4.
The NASPA VKC Supra and Ultra Award is reserved for a member who has gone above and beyond in serving military-related students on their campus, community, or nationwide, and for whom the selection committee of the Supra and Ultra awards feel additional accolades. are to recognize the passion and dedication of this professional.
A graduate of Texas A&M in 1982, Smith served in the U.S. Marines for 30 years before returning to Texas A&M as a professor of military science for the Corps of Cadets. In 2012, Smith founded the Veteran Resource & Support Center, part of the Student Affairs Division, and has been dedicated to enhancing the holistic success of veteran students at Texas A&M. Through her determination, leadership and passion, the VRSC has raised over $13.1 million in donations and pledges in support of student veterans, helping to endow over 90 scholarships, awarding over 325 rings Aggie and funding many programs.
In an effort to export his dedication to veteran student success to other institutions, Smith has taken on the role of Director of Veteran Services for the Texas A&M University System, where he is making great strides in sharing his expertise and formulas. for Veteran Student Success with Texas. A&M campuses across Texas, as well as nationwide through its NASPA membership.
“I strive to ensure that Texas A&M University remains the preeminent national leader for veteran student support,” Smith said. “I am grateful to NASPA for this recognition as it shines a light on our veterans and their families who are working to succeed in higher education. We must all continue to give them every opportunity to benefit from their service and experience. and build a solid career and life outside of the military.
Texas A&M University System Veterans Services Office
The Office of Veterans Services provides leadership, direction, and coordination of military-related student services and support within the Texas A&M university system. Formed in 2011 by the Board of Regents, the Office of Veteran Services is a continuation of the system’s “Project Military Friendly”.
Texas A&M University Veteran Resource and Support Center (Student Affairs Division)
The Veteran Resource and Support Center provides caring, personalized support for Aggie’s undergraduate and graduate student veterans. The center helps veterans navigate Texas A&M and provides a welcoming space, peer mentorship, and tools for academic and personal success.