Veterans Celebrated on East and Winter Park Campuses

Throughout November, East and Winter Park Campuses honored our veterans.

Veterans were thanked for their service, courage, sacrifice, loyalty, inspiration, protection and nobility during the Winter Park Campus Veterans Day celebration on Thursday, November 8, 2018. In addition, the Student Government Association (SGA) provided information to veterans regarding resources and benefits, and students were provided note cards to personally thank veterans by writing them a personal note. A total of 60 notes were collected by SGA and delivered to veterans at the Orlando Veterans Affairs Lake Baldwin Outpatient Clinic.

On East Campus, Veterans Day was celebrated on Monday, November 12, 2018, and began with inspirational music from the Valencia Jazz Band and Valencia Singers and a message from Stacy Johnson, president, East and Winter Park Campuses. She welcomed the audience and said, “Both the College and I are committed to providing an atmosphere of respect and resources to support veterans on this campus. Building 2, Room 116, has been specifically designed as a space for veterans to gather, plan, talk and study.”

Robert Spitler, a helicopter pilot in Vietnam and uncle to Professor of Paralegal Studies Wendy Toscano, provided the invocation and read “An Old Soldier’s Prayer.”

The honored guest speaker was Tuskegee Airman Richard Hall, who served in the WWII, Korea and Vietnam wars. The Tuskegee Airmen was the first group of black airmen in the military. Richard shared that his family moved to Winter Park when he was five months old, and, although he has traveled to numerous states and countries, his favorite place in the entire world is Winter Park. Ninety-five years young, Richard shared his story about being drafted and the importance of education.

Winner of the annual Veterans Day essay was Katherine Fossetta. She was presented with a $500 scholarship from the Valencia Foundation.

Capping off the celebration of veterans on East Campus, the Veteran Affairs Office and Student Veterans of America club hosted its third annual veterans’ appreciation dinner on Thursday, November 8, 2018. Themed “The Royal Gala and Casino Night,” attendees were provided with a delicious Italian dinner and enjoyed a variety of casino games. As the entertainment, Valencia’s dance team, the Fearless Leaders Standout, performed a 1920s dance.

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