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Help Send Tech's Student Veterans to National Conference

Raised toward our $10,000 Goal
14 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on December 07, at 11:59 PM CST
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Help Send Tech's Student Veterans to National Conference

The Veteran’s Association at Texas Tech (VATT for short) is the local chapter of the Student Veterans of America.

SVA was founded in 2008 following the passage of the historic Post-9/11 GI Bill, the largest expansion of education benefits since the World War II–era GI Bill. They have grown to represent student veteran communities at more than 1,500 colleges and universities in all 50 states and 5 territories, and 4 countries. SVA is the first and only veteran service organization of its kind, and the only organization in higher education, focused on delivering the advocacy, resources, programs, and research needed for veterans to succeed in higher education and beyond graduation.

SVA empowers the student veteran population by:

  • Helping veterans become informed consumers of higher education and decide what to study, where, and how best to utilize their earned benefits.
  • Supporting veterans on campus with our network of student veteran communities as well as individual programs and services.
  • Connecting veterans to gainful employment during or post-graduation.
  • Conducting groundbreaking research on Post-9/11 GI Bill graduation rates, student debt, and more.
  • Advocating with lawmakers on behalf of student veterans to protect the integrity of the Post-9/11 GI Bill

For more information about NatCon you can go to the Student Veterans of America's website below: 

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Oscar Martinez

I joined the Marine Corps in September of 2012 because I wanted the experience of traveling and to be the first in my family to serve our country. I served as an engineer equipment operator with 7th Engineer Support Battalion based in Camp Pendleton, CA and currently serve as the maintenance platoon commander with Combat Logistics Battalion 453 in Lubbock, TX. I am pursuing a degree in Accounting at Texas Tech University and upon graduating my goal is to work as a bank examiner with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. Attending NatCon will provide me with necessary network connections to help assist me in my future goals.


Steven Posada

I enlisted in the US Navy straight out of high school and served for fifteen years. I separated from the military in 2006 as an E-6, but had difficulty readjusting. I needed to make some serious life changes, and sought treatment. After a bad experience, I decided that I was going to major in Psychology (with a minor in Social Work) rather than Education. I wanted to help veterans get the help that they need so no one would ever go through what I went through. I graduated from South Plains College in May 2017 with an A.A. in Psychology and then transferred to Tech. I am happy to say that I will be graduating this December. I also intend to get my Master's in Public Administration with the discipline in Military and Veterans Resources. I joined the VATT because I wanted to still have my ties to my fellow service members. If I planned on one day working for Veteran’s Affairs, I needed to know what problems and concerns they experienced. Attending NatCon will also help with that.


Nicholas Mackey

I enlisted in the Army in 2012 and became an Airborne Infantryman in the 82nd Airborne. I spent 4 and a half years on active duty and still continue to serve through the Texas National Guard. After getting out of active duty in 2017 I was determined to return to Tech and finish my college education. I decided to join the Veteran's Association (VATT) because I understood the importance of making friends and finding support, as well as the difficulties that can arise as a non-traditional student on campus. I am majoring in psychology and plan on getting a master's in industrial/organizational psychology. With this masters degree I hope to work under a company's HR department or for a consulting firm to help increase productivity and worker satisfaction. Going to NATCON is a way to make connections with potential employers, learn more about the job field I am interested in, and refine important presenting and interviewing skills.


Kevin Mosher

I joined because serving is something that I feel like is a big part of me. While I was in the Airforce, I was an Arabic Cryptologic Language Analyst for 6 years. I came to Texas Tech as a Wind Energy major because I’m originally from Lubbock and I've always wanted to come here and my mom and wife are Tech alumni. I chose Wind Energy as my major in hopes of finding a good paying job in a growing industry where I can be outside as much as, if not more, than the amount of time I have to spend behind a desk. I joined the Veteran's Association at Texas Tech (VATT) to be part of a group of veterans that would understand the things I would be going through as a non-traditional student, that typical students don’t face. I want to go to NatCon for the opportunity to network with other veterans and companies that I might not get a chance to network with any other way. I also hope to make some good connections with employers in my chosen industry.


Kyle Ridenour

I joined the Army in 2013 as a Combat Engineer. I served for a little under 4 years, with a deployment to Afghanistan. I decided to go to Texas Tech due to the outstanding reputation of the College of Agriculture Science and Natural Resources and major in Natural Resource Management. After I finish my Bachelor's, I plan to seek a graduate degree while researching freshwater fish and aquatic insect interactions. I want to go to NatCon 2020 not only to network for my own career, but help other veterans in natural science fields, navigate through the issues they face with seeking a higher education.


Carol Castillo

I served in the Marine Corps from 2009-2013 as a Combat Engineer and deployed to Afghanistan in 2011 with 7th Engineer Support Battalion. I started at a community college in CA after my enlistment was over, and transferred to Tech in August 2017. I anticipate on graduating in December 2020 with a Bachelor's in Construction Engineering. One thing that I missed, from the military was the camaraderie that we had in the military. Which is why I joined the Veteran's Association at Texas Tech (VATT) when I transferred. The VATT not only brings back the camaraderie, but the members always try their best to support one another and push each other to succeed in school. As the current Vice President of the VATT, I want to go to NATCON to learn as much as I can to assist our members in whatever they need to succeed whether it is school related or personal.


Kathryn Jones

I joined the Navy in 2012 shortly after the ten-year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. I went on Deployment with the USNS Comfort in 2015 for their humanitarian mission Continuing Promise. I also served aboard the Destroyer the USS Jason Dunham. When my time was up in the military, I decided to attend Texas Tech because it had a great reputation and was close to my family in Amarillo, TX. My major is in Psychology, and I want to pursue a career in counseling. I joined the Veteran’s Association because I was looking for the camaraderie that I missed from my time in service. I ran for President of Veteran’s Association when I saw how important it was for my transition back to civilian life, and I wanted to pass that on to as many veterans as I could in my time here at Tech. NATCON is one of the biggest resources, and opportunities for student veterans, and every year it is our mission to send as many Tech Veterans as we can.

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