Student Vets Recognized in Week of Events
By Sandra Seitz
Chancellor Marty Meehan and the Student Veterans Organization (SVO) have declared Veterans Week, Nov. 3 – 11, to honor and recognize the University’s 1,200 student veterans, alumni who are veterans and veterans throughout the community.
The gala opening event for Veterans Week was the dinner and dance at UMass Lowell’s Inn & Conference Center. This annual event includes induction of veteran alumni into the UMass Lowell Veterans Hall of Fame.
Hall of Fame 2012 inductees include USAF Capt. John Ogonowski, 1972 graduate of Lowell Tech and the pilot of American Airlines Flight No. 11 who was killed on Sept. 11, 2001; and Airman 1st Class Robert Page, 1976 graduate of Lowell Tech, retired Lowell firefighter and strong advocate for veterans services at UMass Lowell.
The entire UMass Lowell community is invited to honor veterans and Hall of Fame inductees at the flag-raising ceremony on Nov. 8 at 11:30 a.m. Speakers include Chancellor Meehan, newly re-elected U.S. Rep. Niki Tsongas and Tech Sgt. Ryan Green of Lowell, president of UMass Lowell’s Student Veterans Organization and a meteorology major who is a member of the Air National Guard and Air Force ROTC.
Proud in the Crowd
“Proud in the Crowd” is a new awareness campaign to draw attention to all the veterans in the UMass Lowell community. The SVO encourages veterans, students and staff across campus to “show the colors” during Veterans Week by wearing military insignia for recognition.
Each day, a branch of the military will be honored by wearing a particular color.
- Monday, Army day: gray
- Tuesday, Navy day: brown/tan
- Wednesday, Marines day: red
- Thursday, Air Force day: blue
- Friday, Coast Guard day: white
Proud in the Crowd streamers: The SVO is having backpack keychain streamers produced to hand out at events during Veterans Week, white on blue for veterans and blue on white for students and staff. Streamers will read “Student Veterans Organization” on one side and “Proud in the Crowd” on the other. Attach one to your backpack or handbag in a silent show of support.
Military Appreciation Night at the Tsongas Center
On Saturday, Nov. 10, starting at 7 p.m., hockey fans support the troops as the UMass Lowell River Hawks and University of Maine Black Bears square off in Division I Hockey East play. U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Sean Germain, who recently returned from Afghanistan, will do a ceremonial puck drop. The first 1,000 fans to arrive will receive River Hawk dog tags, courtesy of Eastern Bank, which is also sponsoring this night out for military members stationed at Hanscom Air Force Base in Bedford. Tickets for any military member with ID will be $5.
Div. 2 Military Appreciation Game
On Nov. 11, starting at 3:50 p.m., the Men's D2 Club Hockey Team faces off against Norwich University in the Tsongas Arena. Sponsored by the SVO, the UMass Lowell team will sport custom-made camouflage jerseys, sponsored by the Student Veteran's Organization. T-shirt replicas will be available for sale on campus and free to veterans attending the game.
Care Package Drive
This annual event collects goods that will be packaged up and sent to troops deployed overseas. The SVO has asked for support from other clubs and student leadership organizations on campus to sponsor collection points and gather goods from Nov. 3 to Nov. 17, then join in packaging and shipping Nov. 19 – 21.
SVO Coin Drive
New this year, a coin collection fundraiser will support the cost of shipping out care packages. Secure collection points will be located near registers, in collaboration with University Dining Services.