Conference on military personnel and higher education at CSUSB

     

California State University, San Bernardino will host a “Military Roundtable” conference on Thursday, Aug. 30, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., at the university’s Santos Manuel Student Union.

Man in U.S. Marine Corps uniform saluting American flagThe free conference is being sponsored by CSUSB’s new Veterans Success Center, which opened in May. Parking is complimentary, and lunch and refreshments will be served.

The conference is intended to create a better understanding of the needs of active duty and reserve service members, and presents an opportunity to close the gap between service members and Inland Empire colleges and universities.

CSUSB Veterans Success Center coordinator Marci Daniels, a U.S. Army veteran, said the goal of the military roundtable was to provide a forum where area colleges, universities and service members could begin developing strategies to bridge the gap between the military and academic worlds by incorporating the needs of the military into college-university systems.

“The military roundtable will serve as a launching pad for the Inland Empire to begin the process of working together to find permanent solutions that will work for both sides and make our network connections stronger,” said Daniels.

Several Southern California military bases and posts and their education centers have agreed to participate, including Ft. Irwin Army Post, March Air Force Base and 29 Palms Marine Corps Base. Many service members from local units will also participate, including CSUSB’s Army and Air Force ROTC; the California Army National Guard’s Charlie Company, its Joint Force headquarters; the 12th Marine Corps District; U.S. Coast Guard Riverside Recruiting Office; March Air Force Base 163rd Reconnaissance Wing; and the So Cal Army Recruiting Command.

The keynote address will be given by retired Maj. Gen. Peter James Gravett, U.S. Army and currently serving as secretary of the CalVet office.

The presentation, “Understanding the Military: The Difference between Military and Civilian Worlds,” will be given by Col. Kurt J. Pinkerton, Commander, U.S. Army Garrison at Fort Irwin.

A panel discussion, “Bridging the Gap: Incorporating the Needs of the Military into the College System,” facilitated by Bryant Taylor, U.S. Navy veteran and CSUSB Student Veterans Organization member, will begin at noon. The panel of military members will share the challenges they have faced as active duty service members in the academic arena and discuss how they might be resolved. The panelists also will cover the importance of why campuses must be prepared when serving active duty military.

Panelists include Lt. Col. Sam Elliott, commander of CSUSB’s Air Force ROTC; 1st Lt. David Majestic, recruiting operations officer at CSUSB’s Army ROTC; Sgt. 1st Class Mario Mayorquino, California Army National Guard; Chief Jason Smith, U.S. Coast Guard; and Gunnery Sgt. Juan Lopez, U.S. Marine Corps.

The lunch session will feature “Becoming a Military-Friendly Campus” with speakers Mac MacDonald from Chaffey College’s Veterans Resource Center, Brian Mullgrav from San Bernardino Valley College and Daniels from CSUSB.

The event includes an afternoon campus tour and a panel session with perspectives from three CSUSB students, one active duty service member and two students in the reserves. The conference will conclude with table discussions on a variety of topics facilitated by an armed forces member, staff or other post/base personnel.

The outcomes of these discussions will be compiled in a CSUSB report that will become the starting point for the next roundtable to be hosted by one of the partners.

To RSVP or for more information about the military roundtable conference or the CSUSB Veterans Success Center, contact Marci Daniels at (909) 537-5195 or 5196; or e-mail daniels@csusb.edu.

For more information about Cal State San Bernardino, contact the university’s Office of Public Affairs at (909) 537-5007 and visit news.csusb.edu.