LSU Opens William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center
BATON ROUGE – Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards joined LSU President F. King Alexander and others from the university and military community for a ribbon-cutting and grand-opening ceremony at the new William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center on Wednesday, Jan. 31.
“We’re all here because we love this state; we love this university; we love, honor and respect our veterans,” Edwards said. “For me to be able to be here as a veteran myself, I could not be more excited to cut the ribbon on this veterans student center, and it wouldn’t be possible without the generous support from Dr. William A. Brookshire and the family.”
The center, located on Veterans Drive, adjacent to Barnes & Noble at LSU, will support student veterans, active military, reservists, guardsmen and their dependents thanks to a donation from Brookshire, an LSU chemical engineering Ph.D. graduate (1961). The facility will transform how LSU supports, recruits and retains veterans.
“We commend the sacrifices our veterans have made in the spirit of peace and freedom for our nation. As such, we pledge LSU’s never-ending support of their academic efforts,” Alexander said. “Placing the William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center front and center on our campus is a visible reminder of the very real debt we owe them.”
The new, 4,600-square-foot center composed of a computer lab, meeting rooms and offices will allow for increased services for military students and families. Additionally, it positions LSU to compete with regional peers in recruiting veteran students.
In addition to Edwards and Alexander, the ribbon-cutting ceremony included LSU Vice President for Student Affairs Kurt Keppler; Lori Garrison, daughter of William A. Brookshire; Mark Frank, president of Student Veterans of LSU; and Sachiko Cleveland, program director for the William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center.
Keppler said the university is “tremendously grateful for the amazing donation from the Brookshire family.”
“Veterans face a unique transition to university life including challenges related to financial aid, adjusting to campus life and a general lack of understanding of their experience by their classmates,” said LSU Vice President for Student Affairs Kurt Keppler. “LSU honors all veterans and military families by ensuring they have access to the assistance and resources they need to achieve their personal and professional goals. We are committed to being a veteran friendly campus, with a focus on providing the support needed to be successful and graduate.”
Advocating for veteran and military students, LSU’s William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center is dedicated to helping veterans, service members, dependents and survivors succeed in higher education and in seeking employment. LSU is currently home to nearly 500 veteran students and 1,630 undergraduate dependents.
During the ceremony, Garrison provided some background and insight into her late father and his drive to recognize the sacrifices made by veterans.
“On behalf of my father and our family, we want to thank you for all that you’ve done for our country and wish you every success,” she said.
The center will foster a community of support at LSU for veterans and their families through helping students achieve personal and professional goals, explore new learning experiences and get involved on campus. The main goal is to start students on the right path, help them transition to college and ensure they earn a college degree.
“Now, we as veterans have taken off our uniforms and entered a new arena. From the battlefields, the oceans and skies, we have now entered the classroom. Here’s where we make our next stand and complete the next mission in our life,” Frank said.
He added, “This important investment in the military and veteran community will pay dividends for future generations to come. Veterans are a cornerstone to any success institution, and this new center has opened the floodgates for new veterans to attend.”
The new William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center is part of LSU Campus Connections, under the Division of Student Affairs. Campus Connections is a unit housed within Student Success that focuses on the needs of first-year, transfer and veteran students as they transition to LSU. Through interactive programming and individual strategy sessions, Campus Connections ensures an all-inclusive experience at LSU. Students that take advantage of Campus Connection programming typically feel more connected to the community and experience success at LSU.
For more information on the William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center, please visit www.lsu.edu/veterans.
Contact Sachiko Cleveland
William A. Brookshire Military & Veterans Student Center
LSU Media Relations