VFW post encourages student veterans to use its space

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COLUMBIA - Student veterans in mid-Missouri could soon have another place to hit the books in peace and quiet.

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 280 in Columbia has made a recent push to offer students a place to study.

Post Chaplain Will Paulus has talked to student veterans about the benefits of this potential partnership.

"I think it's a great idea," Paulus said. "This is a much more relaxed atmosphere as opposed to the MU library or something on campus."

VFW Commander Don Briggs believes the post serves an important purpose to student veterans.

"They don't have anyone that they can go to on the outside that understands what they're talking about," Briggs said. "We are a brotherhood."

Paulus said he feels this particular use of the post is overlooked. He said the camaraderie in the post could improve the academic performance of student veterans.

"The beauty of this place is there's not a whole lot of distractions and there's not a whole lot of people," Paulus said. "You come here and you know that all you're gonna see is other veterans, and to a lot of veterans that's a really nice thing."

Briggs said that student veterans using the post in this way is not necessarily overlooked. He has reached out to multiple student veterans' organizations on the MU campus regarding its accommodations. Briggs said more effort should be made by the veterans individually. 

"What we really need to be able to do is to come and talk to them on a one-on-one basis," Briggs said. "That seems to be a stumbling block for some reason."

Briggs said he plans to meet with student organizations soon to discuss the possibilities surrounding the effort.