by Olivia Goodheart
Jackson State University’s Veterans and Military Student Support Center has a new look, and it is all thanks to The Home Depot Foundation and local Team Depot volunteers from all four stores in the Jackson metro area.
According to Dr. LaToya Reed, executive director of the center, the project resulted from a grant funded by the Student Veterans of America (SVA) to build or renovate space where veterans can get access to school resources, study and connect with other veterans on campus. Grantees received up to $10,000 for their projects.
“We’ve seen how vet centers can be the linchpin for veterans working toward graduation, and we’re grateful to be able to offer our SVA chapters resources like the Vet Center Initiative, thanks to partners like The Home Depot Foundation,” said Jared Lyon, president and CEO of SVA.
The renovation started in October and was coordinated by the following individuals: Fred Hutto, pro desk supervisor/Team Depot captain; Krystal Buckner, associate support supervisor; Titus Gilbert, paint supervisor; Darryl Brown, kitchen and bath supervisor; Tavia Weatherspoon, associate support supervisor; and Erica Scott, appliance supervisor.
Hutto said, “We will be bringing in talent and labor from all four stores in the metro area to come in and do the work here. Our hope is that the transformation will make a positive impact on everybody who comes in and utilizes the facilities.” The JSU center received a new workstation in the office area, an upgraded break room/lounge area and re-painting and new carpet. It also includes a conference room and reception area.
“Additionally, we are grateful to JSU Army and Air Force ROTC cadets, as well as the Alice Varnado Harden Center for Service for their willingness to volunteer in assisting with our project,” Reed added.
The JSU Veterans and Military Student Support Center is on the 3rd Floor, Suite 302, of the Jacob L. Reddix Building. The staff provides assistance to student veterans, dependents and military service members. For more information or assistance, call 601-979-0889 or 601-979-1365, or visit www.jsums.edu/veteranscenter/