Arizona State University’s TRIO Veterans Upward Bound (VUB) is a program that offers free college-preparatory courses for veterans that either come from low-income backgrounds or are firs- generation college students. This program has been awarded federal funding for 44 years. The Pinal County Veterans in the new grant cycle have been offered the opportunity to participate in the VUB in an annual frequency. An approximate of 140 interested college bound veterans will have the provision of the programs’ services. The program currently has a sum of thirty people. The Director of the VUB, Veronica Hernandez, explains that the program gives excellent learning opportunities for veterans, most who transfer higher education from the military skills they possess. She continued to state the importance of the program that it gives step by step guide to the veterans and important support systems in their college accomplishments and success. The mission of the VUB is to give motivation, assistance and support to the Veterans in Maricopa County for higher education.
The VUB program is free for all the veteran participants and supported by the U S Department of Education. It services four of ASU’s campuses that include individual online courses and academic coaching, one on one learning sessions that are focused on financial literacy and goal setting skills, help with the process of admission to ASU or any other colleges and having continued support the whole of their academic career life, even after they have completed the program. Other activities that are included, are attending a Broadway show in the ASU Gammage and attending or participation to football games.
George Campbell, a 75 year old army veteran describes that the purpose of VUB is to give motivation to veterans in the pursuit of knowledge and camaraderie. Campbell served in the Air Force. He addressed that the bond of serving is one major part of why veterans spend time with each other. The bond is unbreakable. Esprit de corps.