OU hosts several events for Veterans Week


Photo courtesy of @oaklanduvss on Instagram

SVOU’s one mile road march on Nov. 8.

From Nov. 7-11, Oakland University hosted a variety of events for Veterans Week, providing a way for students to learn more about the experiences of veterans and celebrate their service.

The week kicked off on Nov. 7 with a “Mess Hall Monday” meal, provided by OU Veterans Support Services (VSS) in the Oakland Center (OC). VSS staff members dished out plates of eggs, hash browns and coffee to students.

At the event, which was free to the public, attendees were able to learn more about VSS and its role on OU’s campus. Students were also able to chat with OU veterans to learn about their experiences in the service.

On Nov. 8, community members were invited to join the Student Veterans of Oakland University (SVOU) on a one mile road march across campus. Attendees were encouraged to bring nonperishable food items to donate to the Golden Grizzlies Food Pantry. 

The SVOU also held a card making event on Nov. 9 in the Douglas Overlook Room of the OC. Participants were able to meet VSS staff while crafting cards for veterans living in the Michigan Veteran Home of Chesterfield.

On Nov. 10, SVOU hosted a bonfire for student veterans and their families. S’mores and refreshments were provided at the family-focused event for all attendees.

Veterans Appreciation Week concluded on Nov. 11 with a Veterans Recognition Luncheon and Military Appreciation Night at the OU Men’s Basketball Game. At the luncheon, attendees listened to a speech from keynote speaker, retired Command Sgt. Maj. Douglas A. Merritt, Jr.

At the luncheon, numerous OU student veterans were awarded scholarships sponsored by Magna, the David N. Sokol Scholarship for Veterans and Northwestern Mutual/Wilshire Benefits Group. The scholarship winners were displayed on a wall within the OC, which noted the branch they served within the military.

“As a transfer student, I appreciate OU’s value of their students and staff, as it shows in their investments in quality professors, programs and infrastructure,” scholarship winner Buffie Magee said. 

Magee, who served in the Navy, is currently a junior working toward her bachelor’s degree in social work. She said she believes OU is doing an excellent job of fostering a distinguished environment of acceptance, support and camaraderie. 

“I enlisted in the Navy immediately after I graduated high school in 1999, and ended up serving for 20 years,” Magee said. “Being a part of the OU family and such a well-established organization continuously motivates me to excel academically, personally and professionally.”

After the luncheon, the veterans were given free tickets to the OU Men’s Basketball game against Bowling Green for Military Appreciation Night. At half-time, the veterans were given special recognition for their service. 

Students can find more information about Veterans Support Services at OU by visiting their website. In addition to Veterans Week, OU has recently been awarded Gold-level status on the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency’s 2022 list of veteran-friendly schools, the sixth consecutive year they have earned this distinction.