UT and A&M systems join forces to present the Texas Veterans Higher Education Symposium

Helping veterans transition from military to civilian life while earning a college degree will be the focus of the 10th Annual Texas Veterans Higher Education Symposium, which will be held Oct. 11-12 at the Omni Austin Hotel in downtown Austin.

Veterans, along with higher education administrators, military leaders, state officials, health care providers and others who offer services to veterans and military-affiliated populations are invited to attend the symposium, which is jointly held by The University of Texas System and Texas A&M University System annually. The goal of the symposium is to connect support services for student veterans and military-affiliated individuals statewide.

“This convening of leaders from the military, higher education, and other key sectors could not be more timely,” said Tony Cucolo, UT System’s associate vice chancellor for leadership development and veterans affairs. “Veterans issues are both complicated and complex, and policies and approaches are in a constant state of change.

“Because Texas has one of the largest populations of veterans and military-affiliated individuals in the U.S., the collaboration between the state’s two largest university systems only makes sense and should send a message of how important this work is,” added Cucolo, who retired from the U.S. Army as a major general.

To better understand the trending conditions that impact veterans, session topics will be wide-ranging and will include the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board’s 60x30TX Plan; the U.S. Department of Education’s 8 Keys to Veteran Success; the U.S. Veterans Health Administration’s Whole Health System Initiative; and the U.S. Substance & Mental Health Administration’s effort to prevent suicide among service members, veterans and their families.

“The statewide Veterans Higher Education Symposium is a significant opportunity to increase communication and collaboration across our state. The focus on helping student veterans transition to civilian careers is a critical component to higher education success for our former warriors and their families,” said Jerry Smith, director of veterans services for the Texas A&M University System. “This leadership and collaboration between the UT System and Texas A&M System will help to create innovative and resourceful ways to better serve those who have served our country.”

This year’s keynote speaker will be Robert Worley, director of education at the U.S. Veterans Benefits Administration and a retired major general with the U.S. Air Force. Many other distinguished leaders will serve as speakers and panelists. For a complete listing, go the Texas Veterans Higher Education Symposium website and click on "Agenda."

Registration is open to anyone interested in attending. For more information, please contact Dr. Larry Wallace, Jr. at lwallace@utsystem.edu.

About The University of Texas System
For more than 130 years, The University of Texas System has been committed to improving the lives of Texans and people all over the world through education, research and health care. With 14 institutions, an enrollment of more than 235,000 students and an operating budget of $19.5 billion (FY 2019), the UT System is one of the largest public university systems in the United States. UT institutions produce nearly 59,000 graduates annually and award more than one-third of the state’s undergraduate degrees and almost two-thirds of its health professional degrees. Collectively, UT-owned and affiliated hospitals and clinics accounted for more than 7.8 million outpatient visits and 1.6 million hospital days last year. Across UT institutions, research and development expenditures total $2.7 billion – the second highest among U.S. public higher education systems – and the UT System is regularly ranked among the top 10 most innovative universities in the world. The UT System also is one of the largest employers in Texas, with more than 21,000 faculty – including Nobel laureates and members of the National Academies – and nearly 85,000 health care professionals, researchers, student advisors and support staff.

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Karen Adler: kadler@utsystem.edu • 512-499-4360 (direct) • 210-912-8055 (cell)