Cornell Opens Veterans House, Creates Camaraderie

Cornell Opens Veterans House, Creates Camaraderie

This fall, a student veteran residential program house will open near the West Campus of the University of Cornell, providing a much-needed space for the school’s growing veteran population.

This new housing program will be essential for the student veterans to find community, resources, and support, according to Cornell Provost Michael Kotlikoff.

"Our efforts to offer a dedicated program house to our campus veterans and other members of the military community have had many positive results these past few years,” Kotlikoff said. “Cornell's 'any person' ethos is reflected in an increase in students with military experience and is an important part of student diversity."

The University of Cornell is home to more than 200 veterans of the military, and about 70 of those veterans are undergraduate students, many of whom use the Montgomery GI Bill to help pay for school tuition and books as well as a housing stipend.

In the fall of this year, 33 undergraduate veterans enrolled at colleges and universities, the largest class in more than 40 years.

Veteran student advocacy led to the creation of the new veterans’ program house. Several other advocacy successes in the past few years include:

  • Recruitment of 100 undergraduate veterans.
  • Showing an advocate staff position.
  • Lighting the clock tower green on Veterans Day.

Veterans can often have difficulty adjusting to college life. However, some have found Cornell's Veteran Summer Bridge Program helpful as a guide to navigating academic resources and civilian life.

The house, part of Cornell's military division, will be open to veterans, active-duty military members, ROTC students, reservists and National Guard members. This house will allow everyone to meet in a clean and professional environment, regardless of whether they are preparing for a speaker series or attending a Veterans Day luncheon.

According to Ryan Lombardi, vice president for student and campus life, some of the veteran students attending Cornell's popular Veterans Summer Bridge Program could begin living in the program house and later stay for the year.

In addition to veterans, active duty service members, ROTC students, reservists, National Guard members, as well as Cornell military faculty, staff, and alumni, the house shall be dedicated to the local veteran community as well.