Saluting Our Veterans!

Dear Tulane Community:

Today we give special recognition and thanks to all who have honorably served in our nation’s armed forces. This includes generations of Tulane alumni, current students, faculty and staff.

At Tulane, honoring our veterans goes beyond today’s annual observance of Veterans Day. Our commitment to veterans is a daily and ongoing one that takes many forms, including making a Tulane education more accessible through benefits, federal loans and financial aid specifically geared to veterans and military personnel. As students, veterans bring so much to campus life, including diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives.

When such students graduate, they go on to make contributions that are out of this world. I mean that literally in the case of Tulane graduate Col. Douglas G. Hurley. A veteran of the Marine Corps – whose commandant is fellow Tulane graduate Gen. David Berger – Col. Hurley is also a NASA astronaut who commanded the first crewed test flight of the SpaceX Crew Dragon. Back on Earth, Tulane veterans serve in every conceivable capacity as engineers, attorneys, healthcare professionals, architects, authors, entrepreneurs and so much more. Many, such as third-year law student Andrew Perry, president of Tulane’s chapter of Student Veterans of America, feel a special call to serve their fellow veterans.

To ensure that we remain a welcoming and supportive home for veteran faculty and staff, several Tulanians banded together late last year to create the Tulane Veterans Faculty and Staff Affinity Group. These co-founders include David Bankston, an Army veteran and director of community and veteran engagement for the Tulane University Center for Brain Health (TUCBH); Jeremy Brewer, a Marine Corps veteran and clinical navigator for the TUCBH; Rebecca Rouse, an Army veteran and associate program director of SoPA’s Emergency and Security Studies Program; and Michael Wallace, a Navy veteran and director of SoPA’s Emergency and Security Studies Program.

Access to quality healthcare, a major factor in how well veterans adjust to civilian life, is another central component of our focus on veterans. Among our numerous initiatives in this area is a recently announced partnership between the Center for Brain Health and the national organization Merging Vets & Players, which provides both veterans and former professional football players opportunities, community and support for their physical, emotional and spiritual needs.

These and other ongoing efforts have resulted in Tulane being nationally ranked as one of the country’s best universities for veterans. This is a designation we cherish. On this Veterans Day and every day, we salute all veterans, and especially Tulane veteran students, faculty, staff and alumni, as they continue to serve not for one’s self, but for one’s own.