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Carlson School Veteran's Day Address

Every year since 1919, the United States has honored its military veterans on the 11th of November. This date was selected due to its significance as the final day of World War I symbolized by the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. Originally called "Armistice Day", 11 November became Veterans Day after an act of congress made it an official federal holiday in 1954. Numerous ceremonies and commemorations are being held throughout the Twin Cities the week of 11 November, including a special ceremony on the University of Minnesota campus at the Coffman Student Union on 15 November at lunch time.

This year, we are honored to have a growing number of military veterans in all three of our MBA programs at the Carlson School of Management. In addition to the MBA students that have served and are in the process of transitioning to civilian employment, we have active serving students still wearing the uniforms of our nation while pursuing their MBA's. The Carlson School of Management's growing number of military veterans pursuing MBA's is not just a coincidence. It is the design of the senior leadership within Carlson to facilitate military veterans as they seek higher education in the rigors of business. Military veterans add to the richness of the classroom experience at the Carlson School of Management as most have vast backgrounds requiring practiced leadership and organizational skills. The MBA Program Military Initiative was developed by the dean and associate dean to assist our returning and serving service member by easing their transition into civilian life and employment.

While at the Carlson School of Management, military veterans are fully supported by dedicated Carlson School and University of Minnesota personnel to help facilitate entry into, and success during and after, the Carlson MBA Program. For our veterans in the Carlson MBA Program, it is our mission to:

• help veterans assimilate back into an academic setting,
• provide veteran-specific financial support or guidance,
• provide a strong support network,
• and translate acquired military skills into the practice of business.

To assist us with these requirements, the Carlson MBA Program Military Initiative has included the establishment the MBA Military Veterans Club. With current veteran's club president Gene Levin (2013), and past president Mike Conroy at the helm, the club has held several successful student functions including a paintball competition and social functions on campus. Additionally, the veterans club will be sponsoring the national philanthropic event known as the Marine Corps "Toys for Tots" in Carlson and Hanson Halls this winter. Therefore, we respectfully request you get your toys ready for donation when you see the US Marine Corps Toys for Tots boxes appear in the hallways in late November and December this year.

Lastly, The Carlson School of Management MBA Program Military Initiative was developed to assist in the recruitment as well as support of our returning military veterans. Although the Military Initiatives Program has only been at Carlson for 6 months, our recruitment class for the fall of 2012 is comprised of the largest number of extremely talented military veterans ever entered into the Carlson full time MBA program. My position takes me to military installations, veteran related job fairs and education conferences across the country every month. The goal is to get the information out to the military veteran network of the opportunities we have here at Carlson in the MBA programs for veterans. We are embarked on a truly great program here at Carlson to assist our military veteran population as they transition into civilian life. As more military veterans hear about the opportunities we have here, it is our strong desire to continue to see our program and veteran student population grow.

As we celebrate Veteran's day the week of November 11th, please take a moment this week to thank any military veteran for their service. Whether it be on the University of Minnesota campus or in your own community your gesture will be greatly appreciated. In many cases their sacrifices have been great, and are deserving of our gratitude. Have a tremendous Veteran's day.

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