UW-Stevens Point seminar helps veterans transition to college life

Wisconsin Public Radio
By David Chrisinger
03 Dec 14

The University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point is offering a new seminar this semester to help veterans transition into civilian life as students.

UWSP

“Back From the Front: Transitioning From the Military to Civilian Life” was created by David Chrisinger, an associate lecturer at the school. About four years ago, Chrisinger’s friend returned home from his second deployment in the Middle East and opened up about everything he was dealing with back on the home front.

“I had never confronted the after-effects like this,” Chrisinger said. “I didn’t know the issues he was dealing with. I read everything I could. There were a few books that really made me understand better, or at least empathize.”

The two continued to work together to raise awareness and money for veteran service organizations.

After giving a lecture at Steven’s Point, which enrolls roughly 300 military veterans, Chrisinger was asked if he could create a class around the concept. He spent last year putting together a syllabus, and the mission continued.

“Part of new curriculum design here at Steven’s Point is to take a first-year seminar — a class to teach freshman students how to be successful in college,” Chrisinger said. “They found that this was not helpful for non-traditional students in general, and veterans in particular, because the things that veterans are dealing with are very different than what the average 17-or 18-year-old is dealing with.”

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