FEATURE ARTICLE: Penn State Mont Alto Opens New Veterans Center
Penn State Mont Alto celebrated the opening of its new Veterans Center on September 10 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the campus’ Spring House patio, where the center is located. About 70 students currently receive GI educational benefits at Penn State Mont Alto. Fifty are veterans.
“The opening of the center begins a new chapter at PSMA,” said Anthony Dion, Penn State Mont Alto Veterans Association president. “This center will give veterans a place to call home and help us with our classes, to share our stories, to study, to connect with those who are like us and have experiences in life that…only veterans will be able to connect with,” he said.
Over 100 people gathered for a program that also included Chancellor Francis Achampong, Vice President for Commonwealth Campuses Madlyn Hanes, Franklin County Commissioner David Keller, Veterans Affairs Coordinator Kathy Swope, and Legislative Assistant Chad Reichard representing Pennsylvania Senator Richard Alloway II.
Before the ceremony, the Chambersburg Area Senior High School NJROTC Color Guard presented the flag, student Marissa Bubbenmoyer performed “The Star-Spangled Banner,” and the Penn State Mont Alto Jazz Ensemble performed.
The Penn State Mont Alto Student Veterans Association (SVA) was one of 11 university clubs selected from among 100 applicants to receive a $10,000 VetCenter Initiative grant from the SVA and The Home Depot Foundation partnership to refurbish a veterans’ center in April 2014. The Spring House, which is centrally located on the Penn State Mont Alto campus, was built in 1905 and previously served as a faculty lounge and mailroom. Its interior was renovated during the summer and now has computers for Internet access and space for student veterans to study and gather.