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About

Blue Hen Veterans at UD

Blue Hen Veterans and Friends

A partnership created to support veteran and military students at the University of Delaware

Blue Hen Veterans

(Current Students)

Blue Hen Veterans and Friends

(Alumni and Supporters)

Blue Hen Veterans (BHV) is a registered student organization at the University of Delaware (UD) and a student chapter of the Student Veterans of America (SVA) national organization.

Formerly known as the Student Veterans Association at UD, Blue Hen Veterans was established to provide support for student veterans through social, academic, and professional resources. It has always been a priority of the organization to aid the veteran's transition into the educational system and to achieve their personal and professional goals. BHV strives to promote, unify, and advocate for the veteran voice on- and off-campus.

 

Throughout the past 10 years, BHV has served as a resource for U.S. Armed Services members of all branches. Today, BHV's primary role is to serve as a means of social connection and support for any student who has served, or is currently serving, in any capacity, in the U.S. Armed Services. We also welcome Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) cadets, U.S. Military dependents, family members of service members, and anyone wishing to support student veterans while attending the University of Delaware. Membership and volunteer opportunities are available to any full- or part-time undergraduate or graduate student.

Every year, BHV hosts or co-hosts multiple on-campus and off-campus events. One example is UD Veterans Week, which is a series of events during the week of Veterans Day. This week highlights veterans and service members through a variety of activities, including a 7,000+ flag display, titled Flags for the Fallen. During the week, a ceremony featuring a guest speaker takes place on the UD Green, honoring American KIAs since 9/11. The week culminates with a Veterans & Friends Ball, celebrating the success and heritage of student veterans.

 

Since 2016, BHV has participated in programs and events sponsored by the SVA national organization. While attending the SVA National Conference in 2016, BHV was awarded a first-place grand prize in a national business plan competition. Additionally, BHV hosted an informational breakout session at the conference, detailing the design of a Veteran New Student Orientation (VNSO) program. Since then, the VNSO has been held annually in partnership with UD’s Division of Student Life’s, office of Orientation and Transition Programs.

Looking forward, one of BHV’s primary goals is to welcome and empower student veterans at UD to achieve their personal goals. BHV is optimistic about increasing and engaging with its membership by hosting more social events. There are plenty of opportunities to volunteer in the planning, logistics, and operation of these events. Please feel free to contact us if you are interested in being involved in these efforts. Also, be sure to keep an eye on our Events Calendar on the Home page for updates on future meetings and events!

In 2016, Blue Hen Veterans and Friends, Inc (BHV&F) was established by BHV alumni to serve as long-term support, advisement, and liaison between veteran alumni and current student veterans at UD. Additionally, BHV&F fundraises year-round to provide supplemental funding for the BHV student group and to provide events that engage the Delaware community with student veterans and military members. BHV&F is also proud to offer funding for professional development in the form of small grants (less than $500) to any student who has served, or is currently serving, in any capacity, in the U.S. Armed Services.

Prior to BHV&F being established as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the organization began in 2014 as a cycling team comprised of BHV students, alumni, friends, family, and supporters of the student veteran population at the University of Delaware. BHV&F has participated annually in the Face of America (FOA) cycling event from 2014-2019. Each year, hundreds of riders assemble in Washington D.C. for the FOA event, which is hosted by World T.E.A.M. Sports. This 2-day, 110-mile event begins near the Pentagon and ends in the historic battlefields of Gettysburg. Funds donated support future programming hosted by World T.E.A.M. Sports, which includes adaptive sports for disabled veterans and first responders.

In past years, BHV&F has also provided financial and logistics support for events co-hosted by the BHV student group. This includes the UD Veterans Week Flags for the Fallen display and ceremony, Veterans and Friends Ball, and most recently a cleanup project at the Delaware Veteran Memorial Cemetery. Additionally, BHV&F has financially assisted UD student veterans who wish to attend Student Veterans of America (SVA) programming, such as the SVA National Conference.

Also of importance, BHV&F strives to create opportunities for mentorship and professional development among current students, UD alumni, and the local community. This is achieved by connecting student veterans with mentors in their respective career fields, establishing important relationships that can lead to professional references, internships, career advice, and job opportunities. Most importantly, mentors share best-practices and experiences navigating the transition process from military to civilian employment and empower the individual veteran as they embark on their chosen path after service.