UA Little Rock Celebrates Military Heroes

Chancellor Christy Drale, student veteran Jameice Flowers and members of the UA Little Rock Military Student Success Center participate in a Veterans Day ceremony on campus.

The University of Arkansas at Little Rock held a Veterans Day Ceremony to commemorate the university’s military students and veterans.

“Friday’s Veterans Day ceremony and the ending of this year’s Homecoming week demonstrated how amazing this university’s staff is daily,” said Travis Weigel, director of military student success. “The Arkansas weather threw a wrench in our plans, but these professionals and our outstanding students adapted quickly. I thank everyone who helped or just came out to honor our UA Little Rock veterans.

During the ceremony, Chancellor Drale spoke of supporting our veterans and their importance to our community. While veteran student Jameice Flowers discussed how vital support and community are to adjusting to higher education after taking off the uniform. I would also like to thank Lakaia Massey for her wonderful rendition of the National Anthem.”

Chancellor Christina Drale thanked UA Little Rock’s 548 student veterans and 81 faculty and staff veterans for their service. She recalled the history of Veterans Day. It began as Armistice Day at the end of World War I when Americans believed that would be the war to end all wars. After World War II and the Korean War, Armistice Day became Veterans Day in 1954, a day for Americans to gather and celebrate all veterans who have served their country.

“We needed a day that would recognize that we will always have veterans and that veterans will always be the ones who have made the biggest sacrifices for our nation,” she said. “I want to recognize our Director of Military Student Success Travis Weigel for all of the great support he and his team provide for our military students and their families. We have made a commitment to our military students. We will help you, we will support you, and we will celebrate your success.”

U.S. Navy Veteran Jamiece Flowers, a senior from McGehee, described how she plans to help fellow veterans through a career in social work after Arkansas social workers helped her through one of the darkest times in her life.

Chancellor Christy Drale speaks during a Veterans Day ceremony on campus.

Chancellor Christina Drale speaks during a Veterans Day ceremony on campus. Photos by Ben Krain.

The ceremony ended with a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem by Lakaia Massey, a veteran and sophomore at UA Little Rock. Following the ceremony, the Military Student Success Center and William H. Bowen School of Law’s Student Veteran Organization provided food truck vouchers to military and veteran attendees as part of the Homecoming Week celebrations.

Chancellor Drale invited everyone to consider how to honor veterans not just on one special day of recognition, but all year-round.

“For the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, that way is to commit to being a military-friendly campus and to encourage veterans and active military to further their education with us as they translate their experience and their ambitions into the next chapter of their lives,” Drale said. “We further that commitment through participation in the Yellow Ribbon Program to ensure that earned military benefits cover 100 percent of a veteran’s education. We are proud of our designation as a Purple Heart University as we pledge to honor and support wounded veterans and their families.”

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