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UC Ceremony to Honor Veterans Set for Nov. 8, Event Expands as Student Veteran Population Grows

A ceremony to honor our veterans is set for 10 a.m., Friday, Nov. 8, on UC’s McMicken Commons. The solemn ceremony will be followed by a Veterans Fair where at least a dozen local organizations providing services to vets will have booths and displays.

Date: 11/4/2013 10:30:00 AM
By: M.B. Reilly
Phone: (513) 556-1824
Photos By: Video by Ashley Kempher and Lisa Ventre

UC ingot   The number of student veterans enrolled at the University of Cincinnati now numbers close to 1,500, the second-largest student veteran population in the State of Ohio.

UC’s student veteran population has grown rapidly in recent years, up from just 500 student veterans in fall 2008. As such, UC is part of a national trend that, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs, has seen some 1 million veterans and their dependents enroll in colleges and universities over the past four years, an influx due in part to troop drawdowns in Iraq and Afghanistan.

These student veterans – and all military veterans – will be honored in a ceremony set for 10 a.m., Friday, Nov. 8, 2013, on McMicken Commons, in advance of the Nov. 11 observance of Veterans Day.

After the ceremony, UC will host a Veterans Fair, also on McMicken Commons, where local veterans, both students and non-students, can obtain information from local and regional veterans-oriented groups and services. Also on display and open for tours to the general public during the fair will be two 40-foot long mobile medical units, one operated by the Cincinnati Veterans Administration Medical Center and one operated by the Dayton Veterans Administration Medical Center.

One of the groups at the fair will be UC’s newly formed student veteran fraternity, Omega Delta Sigma (ODS). This UC chapter of ODS is currently comprised of 15 student veterans, both men and women, as  members. The group engages in community service, social outings and serves as another form of outreach and support for student veterans. 

The Nov. 8, 2013, ceremony, to begin at 10 a.m. and end at about 11 a.m., will include

  • Members of The UC Bearcat Band playing military marches and patriotic tributes in advance of the 10 a.m. start of the ceremony, accompanying the vocal performance by members of UC’s Cabaret Singers.
  • Serving as master of ceremonies at the event will be UC President Santa J. Ono.
  • Representatives of our military’s past, present and future will make brief remarks: UC alum and disabled Vietnam War veteran retired U.S. Air Force Col. Dean Smittle, who today serves as an art educator and military analyst; UC alum James Kearney, U.S. Air Force liaison officer to the Army, who has just returned from overseas service in Afghanistan; and UC Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) Cadet Commander Susan Stein, a senior in UC’s College of Engineering and Applied Science.
  • Each veteran in the audience, representing members of UC’s students, faculty, staff and visitors, will be called up to receive a commemorative coin in thanks for his or her service.
  • In attendance and standing at formation during the ceremony will be members of UC’s ROTC Color Guard along with 50 Air Force ROTC cadets and 50 Army ROTC cadets.
  • The ceremony will close at approximately 11 a.m. with buglers in the facing towers of Tangeman University Center (TUC) and McMicken Hall playing “Taps.”
  • Visit UC’s Office of Veterans Programs & Services at and see other on-campus events planned for Nov. 6 and 7.
  • For the fifth year in a row, UC was recently highlighted as a Military Friendly School, a designation earned by only 20 percent of the nation’s colleges, universities and trade schools.
  • UC is now one of only 94 campuses in the nation to offer the VetSuccess On Campus program, which is designed to help veterans transition from battlefield to academic life.