Spring 2013 Veteran Newletter - 4

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WVC Veteran Resource Center

WVC Veteran Resource Center -
Outdoor Viking Grove Dedication

Please join us for a special dedicaton ceremony which will include honoring our Veterans by dedicating our Veteran Resource Center and re-naming it Daniel E. Furtado Veteran Resource Center.
The festivities will include a dedication honoring our donors who have contribuited to the veterans plaza, outdoor confrerence room & plaza. We are proud to include a US Army Reserve Band, and Color Guard from Santa Clara University ROTC, as well as a special proclamation from Senator Beall's office. Please save the date and join us as we honor our veteran students.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm Viking Grove Complex

  -- Bernadette Walker placement

WVC Veteran Resource Center

Honoring Daniel E. Furtado

We would like to honor and thank Daniel E. Furtado for his gracious donation to the WVC Veteran Resource Center. These funds will be used to enhance the Veterans plaza as well as provide resources for West Valley College veteran students.
Dr. Daniel E. Furtado
Daniel E. Furtado is the Commander, 334th Medical Group, 330th Medical Brigade, located in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The Medical Group consists of 18 medical units in the States of Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. There are over 2000 soldiers assigned to the group.

Dr. Furtado was commissioned in the Medical Service Corps on June 11, 1965, after completing a four-year ROTC program. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from San Jose State University in Applied Arts and Sciences. Subsequently, he received his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of California and a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of San Francisco. He spent two years on active duty as Chief, Pharmacology Section, Academy of Health Sciences, Ft. Sam Houston, Texas, from Sep 1969 to Sep 1971. Subsequently, he served as Clinical Coordinator, Veterans Administration Medical Center, Palo Alto, CA from 1971 to 1979. He served as clinical pharmacist and Co-Director, Pharmacy, O'Connor Hospital at Campbell, Campbell CA from 1979 to 1980, when he was appointed Associate Director, Primary Care Associate Program, Stanford University School of Medicine. He continues in that position today and is Senior Lecturer in Medicine at Stanford and Associate Clinical Professor of Pharmacy, University of California.

Dr. Furtado is a native of Campbell, California, where he has been active in civic and community affairs for several years, and he, currently, serves as a member of the City Council. He served as Mayor of the City of Campbell in 1999. In addition, he is Chairman of the Emergency Preparedness Council, Santa Clara County, a member of the county Health Advisory Commission and Chair of the Emergency Medical Care Committee, West Valley Sanitation District Board of Directors, and county library Joint Powers Authority. In February 2001, he was selected "Citizen of the Year" for the City of Campbell.

His military assignments include service as Chief, Pharmacy Service, Training Officer, Personnel Officer, Assistant Chief- Personnel Division, and Adjutant, 6253td USAH. He also served as Commandant, 6227th USAR Reserve Forces School, Presidio of San Francisco from 1990 to 1994. Subsequently, he was assigned as Executive Officer, Ft Ord section, 6253rd USAH, and, later, Chief Pharmacy Service, 352nd Combat Support Hospital. In 1997, DR. Furtado was elected to serve as Chief, Professional Services and Chief Pharmacy Officer, 3rd MEDCOM, Atlanta, GA. In May 1998, he was selected for his current position.

Dr. Furtado's awards include the Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Army Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Army Achievement Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal with 1 silver and 1 bronze oak leaf cluster, National Defense Service Medal with 1 bronze star, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with gold hour glass device, and Army Service Ribbon. He is a graduate of the Army War College, and holds the "A" Professional Designator for professional excellence. He holds membership in the Order of Military Medical Merit.


WVC Veteran Resource Center

Meet Matt Meija, WVC Veteran Outreach

 Matt Meija
Matt Mejia, WVC Veteran Outreach


My name is Matthew Mejia I served in the U.S Army for four years, got out in December 14.2012 my brother in-law told me about West valley so I decided to go. I’m working on getting my bachelor degree in law enforcement. I’m an outgoing person and love to play sports, and spend time with my family. The main reason why I came to this school is because I was told that the school has a great veterans club. And that they support and provide information that helps other veterans.


by Matt Mejia, Veteran Outreach You reach Matt by emailing mailto:veteran.outreach@westvalley.edu

WVC Veteran Club

Meet James Winkler - Veterans Club Advisor
& WVC Football Head Coach
WVC Veteran Club Advisor James Winkler

James Winkler, Veteran Club & Head Coach/Defensive Coordinator

Coach Winkler joined the West Valley College football program in 2002 and was named the Vikings Head Football Coach in December 2008. During the Summer of 2008 he was a “guest coach” for the Canadian Football Leaques’ defending Grey Cup Champions, Sasketchewan Roughriders. Prior to joining the Viking family, Coach Winkler was an assistant coach at San Jose State University from 1998-2000 working with linebackers and the secondary. He was on staff at the University of Redlands from 1994-1998, the last two years working as the Defensive Coordinator. Prior to moving up to the college ranks, Coach Winkler spent four seasons working at the high school level in San Diego. In addition to coaching, Jim, spent over six years in the United State Marine Corps and was honorably discharged as a Sergeant at the conclusion of the Persian Gulf Conflict and Desert Storm. Before enlisting he played his college ball at Concordia University in Seward, NE. At Cheyenne Central High School he was selected as an unanimous all conference and all state outside linebacker and participated in the Wyoming All-Star Shrine Bowl.

by James Winkler, Veteran Club Advisor & WVC Football Head Coach


WVC Veteran Resource Center

PTSD Resource

The Veteran's Resource Center is working hard to bring services your way, one such resource is a brochure the VA posts on their websire but worthy for you to checkout. Please keep tuned in for more to follow in the future.

Veteran  Recovery Center (PRRC) Brochure the Veteran Recovery Center (PRRC), an outpatient learning center designed to support recovery for Veterans living with serious mental illness. We hope that you will benefit from our services on your path to recovery.

by Bernadette Walker, Marketing & Communications Coordinator Student Life & Veteran Resource Center


WVC Veteran Club

Homeless Clothing Drive Attention Students, Vetrans and Staff!!!!

Clothng drive
The Veteran Club is working with local shelters that house homeless Veterans to help clothe them and prepare them for jobs & provide Shelter. We are looking for gently used clothing and shoes including dress clothes. The donation bin is at the concierge desk in the Student Center.

For more info Please contact:

--Michael Hutchens, Veteran Club President veteran.club@westvalley.edu


WVC Veteran Resource Center

Little Things That Mean a Lot
Victoria Hindes, Vice President, Student Support Services
Excerpt from her article iJournal online:

“It’s the little things that mean a lot.” How often have we heard this? In many ways, in spite of the large scale efforts to implement new initiatives with hopes of making big impacts, we can’t lose sight of the little things that mean a lot. This sentiment rang true for West Valley College (WVC) when faced with big plans and no funds to develop a veterans program. Many veterans in this region consider themselves part of the “working poor” trying to stay afloat in difficult economic times, but determined nevertheless to make a better life. A small group of veterans who recently separated from active duty have found their home at West Valley College located in Saratoga, in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains, 50 miles south of San Francisco. WVC certifies an average of 100 veterans each academic year, and the vast majority served in the Marines (50%) and the Army (37.5%). Over 83% are full-time students and approximately 16.7% are enrolled part-time.

In spite of their good intentions to attend college, use their GI Bill and secure a degree, they come to college with numerous social and cultural adjustment issues. These issues often hit them full throttle as soon as they enroll. Even more challenging is that when they arrive on campus, they are immediately introduced to “the dance.” Some of them flee as soon as they hear the many steps they have to take. At WVC we call this dance the “West Valley shuffle.”

Accessing services on campus is challenging at best. Unlike other colleges, WVC does not have a One-Stop Student Services Center. Students must learn to navigate their own way through the complex matriculation process, which has been reduced to the “sink or swim” process. Those who can “swim” generally survive their first year, but many “sink” in their first semester. Although the college is located in a beautiful park-like setting spanning over 150 acres, the terrain of the college is very challenging, particularly for disabled students. Student service departments are located in various areas, requiring students to dance the WVC shuffle from place to place.

Compounding this challenge, veterans come to West Valley with numerous problems: these include physical and emotional disabilities, alcohol/substance abuse, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and readjustment issues, financial problems and unemployment. Some lack self-esteem, and many are underprepared for college and need remediation. Military deployments, particularly to combat zones, significantly change a person’s life. The deployment often involves the severe loss of many ordinary comforts generally taken for granted such as access to a variety of good meals, comfortable living conditions, rest and recreation, and most of all, loss of every-day contact with family and friends. Many veterans may have experienced the constant threat of loss of life or injury, and may have witnessed deaths and destruction; thus, once they return home, they may feel isolated from mainstream values (source: Veterans Administration; WVC focus group, 2012). Some veterans may use alcohol or drugs as a way to cope. Providing self-awareness workshops and maintaining a safe and comfortable environment where veterans can meet and talk with other veterans help diminish feelings of isolation and readjustment issues. This is what our veterans told us and we began to listen.

What Veterans Want—4 important things we learned

1. A “Dragnet” approach to college orientation: “Just the facts, ma’am, just the facts.” They want to know just the basics—how to get their Veterans Educational Plan done, identify the counselors who can work with veterans, information about their benefits, where to get help, how to use the student portal, and how to register for classes.

2. Tutoring services—the check-in and check-out approach in a lab setting is least preferred. The location and atmosphere where tutoring is conducted are most important. Since they have limited time to trek across the sprawling campus, they want tutoring available in or near a central location—especially in a place of their own.

3. They lack timely and accurate information about veterans’ benefits. A vast majority of veterans have relied on their peers to get information and it is not always accurate. They want to have staff knowledgeable about veterans’ benefits to present information in a place designated for them and be available for scheduled appointments.

4. They want to be heard and seen, but don’t push the envelope. Keep it basic. Letting them talk in groups is best and should be done in the company of other veterans.

Most of all they wanted A Place of their Own

Veterans wanted a place they could call their own, a home base for them while on campus. While the evolution of the Veterans Resource Center at West Valley College was definitely low key and not news-worthy, looking back, one can truly say it was indeed noteworthy in its organic nature. No one actually laid out a plan and discussions were always in hushed tones since no one really had permission to do it. Knowing full well that often, “no good deed goes unpunished,” no one wanted to be singled out as the leader. It just happened in the small back room the size of a closet in the “temporary” building that had been the home of several Student Services programs for four decades. One day someone brought in a microwave. Next, someone said some bagels and coffee would be nice; then another person brought in a worn but functional sofa from home, and it blossomed from there. Veterans slowly gravitated to the makeshift “center” and they began doing their homework there, asking for help with registration, and talking with each other and with staff who stopped by.

Then a miracle happened. The notion of a home base for veterans took root and flourished. Recently, West Valley College established an “official” Veterans Resource Center—though still small—it is much bigger and more comfortable than the closet in the “temporary” forty-year old portal. The new location is in the completely renovated silver LEED certified Campus Center, and it has become the hub for support group meetings and workshops. Gone are the worn sofa and makeshift work stations. There are computers and printers for veterans to use for free, a refrigerator that is always stocked with snacks, a microwave around the corner, a flat screen television, comfortable new chairs and tables, and their center is decorated tastefully with a patriotic theme. But this isn’t enough. It’s really about the people—the staff who care. They are the ones who do small things in great ways and make a difference. There is no budget for snacks and no faculty reassigned time to take care of the Center. It just happens. Just as it happened years before in the back room of the forty-year old portable building, somehow the refrigerator is still magically stocked with snacks, paper for the printer and cartridge replaced, busy staff and counselors somehow volunteer to present workshops or facilitate group meetings, the veterans online newsletter is published without fuss, and no one wants to be singled out as being the leader or organizer. It is a pure example of the old fashion notion of “let’s get down to basics and roll up our sleeves to help.” It is collaboration at its finest.

-- Dr. Victoria Hindes, Vice President, Student Support Services


WVC Veteran Club

PaintBall Event

paintball event

Come and play some High Speed games of paintball with other veterans on Friday March 22, 2013

Date: Friday, 4/19/13
Place: 2542 Monterey Rd San Jose C.A 9511
Time: From 8:00am – 12:00pm |
Cost: Free
Required: Please fill out required attendance form in the Veteran Resource Center and add your name to the list.

For more info contact Matt Meija at veteran.outreach@westvalley.edu
or call Bernadette Walker at (408) 741-4030


WVC Veteran Club

Hello Fellow Veterans

This semester we started our donation drive for homeless veterans to help clothe them and better prepare them for job interviews and to date we have received over 25 lbs. of clothes, several pieces of furniture and a few house ware items. So I must say we have gotten off to a good start. I hope that we continue this trend and encourage you to go through your closets at home and donate items you no longer wear or need.

Coming up on the 22nd of this month the Silver Center will be hosting a veterans event in conjunction with the Trio Program out at Santa Clara paintball through the work of Matt Meja. The event will have food and you must be there before 8 am for the field orientation or you will not be allowed to play. Please feel free to contact Matt in the VRC for more information and to sign up. There are also forms needed that should be completed no later than March 21st 2013.

Finally; Oracle is opening up its campus to veteran for a showing of “High Ground” on April 3rd. A representative of the film has invited any vets on or off campus to attend. They are also looking for veterans to participate in a Q&A panel. If you have any interest in participating in the panel please let me know so I can forward the information to the rep. and keep an eye out in the VRC where more information will be posted as it becomes available. Please don’t forget Veterans Club meetings are held every Thursday between 1 and 2 in the VRC. I would also like to thank Matt and the silver center for putting on the Call of Duty game day. It was a fun event that we hope to see more of in the future.

Michael Hutchens Veteran Club President, veteran.club@westvalley.edu
WVC Veteran Resource Center

Invites Bay Area veterans, student veterans, and employees to a special screening of the award-winning documentary

High Ground The Movie

An unforgettable story of eleven wounded warriors and one Gold Star Mom who climb a Himalayan mountain in a journey to heal after war.

With Emcee Sean D. Tucker of Team Oracle and a Q&A with John von Seeburg, Senior Producer, Oracle, and High Ground Cinematographer, Matt Murray, Veteran, USAF, and Co-Producer with guests

Michael Hutchens, president of the West Valley College Veteran Club

and Lt Col Howard Zimmerman, Commander, VFW Post 4103, South San Francisco

Veterans: Come get connected! Learn about The Oracle Injured Veterans Job and Training Program. In addition, Project Hired will provide information about other opportunities.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013, 3PM at The Oracle Conference Center

Doors open at 2:30 PM
Film starts at 3:05 PM
Q&A 4:35 PM
Reception and Get Connected at 5:00 PM

Oracle Conference Center
350 Oracle Pkwy
Redwood City, CA 94065

Free. Please reserve your tickets: http://highgroundoracle.eventbrite.com/#


WVC Veteran Resource Center

Thank You: Outreach Mobility Management Center

outreach logo

With the generous donation of funds from the Outreach Mobility Mangement Center we are able to extend additional oppertunities for a bus pass for three veterans in need. If you are currently in need of a bus pass please contact the WVC Veteran Resource center to apply or email Bernadette Walker for specifics.

Some of our bus pass recipients:
buss pass recepient
William Bryson and Sal Palacio

buss pass recepient
Lynel Gardner

by Bernadette Walker, Marketing & Communications Coordinator 
Student Life & Veteran Resource Center

14000 Fruitvale Ave. – Campus Center
Saratoga, CA 95070

(408) 741-4030



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Veteran's Resource Center
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Monday - Friday 8:30 am - 5:30 pm

Veteran Resource Center Support
Bernadette (Berni) Walker

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