Veteran services expanded

Kenai Peninsula College - Around Campus

This semester 128 veteran students from across the University of Alaska system are enrolled in classes at KPC with 68 pursuing KPC degrees. This is an increase of 13 percent compared to same time last year.

The Post-9/11 G.I. Bill covers 50 of the 68 veteran students receiving benefits; seven students attend KPC under the Vocational Rehabilitation for Veterans with Service-Connected Disabilities program and five attend under the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program that focuses on unemployed veterans between the ages of 30 and 60.

The 60 remaining veteran students are enrolled in classes at KPC in pursuit of educational objectives based from other UA campuses, including 46 students from UAA, nine from UAA’s Mat-Su community campus, three from Kodiak College and one each from Prince William Sound Community College and UAF.

Given the steady growth in the veteran student population, KPC established a three-quarter time, 12-month Veteran Services Coordinator (VSC) position on July 1, 2013. This position will assist veteran students at the Kenai River and the Kachemak Bay campuses. The VSC will focus on the distinct needs of veteran students by providing information about procedures and requirements for obtaining benefits and facilitating access to other KPC services.

The college has hired John Pollock, a 25-year, career Marine Corps officer who recently retired as a colonel. Pollock holds master’s degrees in strategic studies and military studies and a bachelor’s degree in history.

Under the supervision of the VSC, KPC has been approved for two VA work study positions. The VA work study program provides veteran students attending KPC the opportunity to receive an additional financial allowance while working on veterans issues.

Cooperative internship program update

This past summer, five KPC Process Technology students worked as interns in Alaska’s oil and gas industry. According to KPC’s Career and Community Engagement Center the students received exceptional ratings and feedback on their evaluations.

According to a recent report, an employer new to hosting KPC Process Technology interns indicated that the company would hire other internship students in the future if they were as well prepared as the student they hired in summer 2013. The employer also indicated they would recommend the student they mentored for an operator trainee position.

KPC history book and commemorative coins in production

In preparation for KPC’s 50th anniversary on July 1, 2014, the college has commissioned a book be written documenting all the efforts that were undertaken to establish the college. This historical anthology will be published in spring 2014 and will be dedicated to KPC’s founding director, Clayton E. Brockel, who died July 11, 2013. The book, titled, “A Legacy of Learning: Kenai Peninsula College’s First 50 Years,” is being written by Clark Fair and Tony Lewis.

In addition to 2014 being KPC’s 50th birthday, the borough and school district also will celebrate the same milestone. To commemorate the tri-anniversary, KPC has partnered with them to have 3-coin sets, minted in silver and copper versions, that show the first leader of each organization on the front side and the organizations’ logos on the reverse. These serial numbered sets will become available in Dec. 2013.

To be notified when the history book and commemorative coins become available, send an e-mail to iynews@kpc.alaska.edu and provide name, address, phone number and e-mail contact. This information will not be used for any other purpose.

This column is provided by Suzie Kendrick, Advancement Programs Manager at Kenai Peninsula College.

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