Making military-to-student transition requires attention

Timothy Lake

Nearly 200 students have experienced the drastic transition from military life to student life, according to Kimberly Sturgeon, administrative assistant for student services.

This transition can lead to stress from both the same ways that all new students feel stress to changing from the strict regimen of military life to the more independent, and looser schedules of college life.

Angela Jepson, a Washburn student who went through basic training, explained that college life was much different, with a lot more freedom and alone time. During military training her schedule was always made for her.

The requirements that Jepson faces from her training include drill weekends once a month, and two weeks in the summer. Otherwise,` she is free to choose whichever major she would like, and what her schedule will be.

Being a military student offers many advantages, including help with tuition from the GI bill, as well as the skills that students learn in the military. Students learn better how to live on their own. They also can receive technical training in a job of their choice.

Students who serve in the military face the same stress as everyone else who are new students. They have to balance work and school, along with family, said Jamie Shehi, university counselor.

“Take one day at a time, and use the resources that are available.” Said Shehi.

Some of the main concerns of those students that have seen deployment are that they are often distracted during class, and more jumpy. In addition, the main stressor that faces those students in the military is that of paperwork according to Shehi.

More family members than soldiers come to the counseling services, to deal with family members who are in the military or deployed overseas. They don’t expect that the deployment of a friend or relative would bother them so much, said Shehi.

She also said that those students that have undergone military training may do better than other new students in the transition, as they have more discipline to set their schedule, and run their college life.

The counseling services make sure that it is easy for students to come down and visit, or set up an appointment, said Shehi.

“There is no problem that is too small, don’t think no one wants to listen, or it’s no big deal.” said Shehi.

“It helped me to mature a lot more. It’s good for students to experience it in order to not take little things for granted,” said Jepson.