Multiple ways to teach veterans and military families to cope with a combat deployment can only be a good thing. I'm very happy to hear of options like this cropping up around the country.
From the San Gabriel Valley Tribune:
After more than 20 years working with war veterans at the East Los Angeles Veterans Center, [former Vietnam veteran Manuel] Martinez put together a lesson plan that will help veterans from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq transition from the battle ground to civilian life.
COUN 159: On Course to Succeed will launch at Citrus College in the fall. It will cover combat stress, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, coping skills and other issues affecting vets. The "Boots to Books" class is open to veterans and their friends and families. Martinez said it is the first such college course in the nation that may eventually branch out to other campuses nationwide.
"This is the first time that they have done outreach at the college level," Bruce Solheim, a Citrus College instructor and volunteer veterans coordinator, said in a statement. "This partnership between the VA and community college will serve as a model for all California and the rest of the nation."
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Martinez pitched the idea to several colleges in January after creating a similar program for those who go to his center. He got the idea to tweak it for college students coming home from wars overseas because of his own difficulties dealing with college after Vietnam.
He said drop-out rates among war veterans are higher because almost 40 percent of them return home with mental health issues, such as anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress. "You don't just come back from an environment like that and expect to make rapid adjustments," Martinez said. ...
Veterans in the course will learn where their particular problems lie and healthy ways to deal with them. "I would hope that somebody in the class could identify where they're at in their own recovery process," Martinez said. "We really want them to succeed in their academic goals."
For information on the Boots to Books class call (626) 852-8096.
Specific course information:
On Course to Success - 21443 - COUN 159 - 020
BOOTS TO BOOKS: This is a special section recommended for veterans and their families
Associated Term: Fall 2007
Registration Dates: Jul 30, 2007 to Dec 22, 2007
Attributes: AA/AS, Not a basic skills course, Non-transferable
Citrus College Campus
Lecture Schedule Type - Traditional Instructional Method
3:40 pm - 6:50 pm, Mondays
Liberal Arts - Business 306
Aug 31, 2007 - Dec 22, 2007