Thursday, September 1, 2016

Jeremy Williams, a doctoral student in the Higher Education and Student Affairs program, helps other veterans succeed.

Jeremy Williams
Veterans Resource Specialist

I-SERVE, Iowa Support, Education and Resources for Veterans and Enlisted program

Jeremy Williams, of Anoka, Minnesota, is an Army veteran and doctoral student in the Higher Education and Student Affairs program with the University of Iowa College of Education.  He has served as a combat medic and medical officer in the Army National Guard and Reserve for a combined total of almost 15 years, including two overseas training missions and one deployment in support of the withdrawal from Iraq in 2011-2012.  Williams enjoys his continued service in the military and plans to complete a full 20 years of service. 

In addition to his academics and military experience, Williams works as a Veterans Resource Specialist for the I-SERVE program in the College of Education, where he works to increase veteran enrollment, support, and available resources. 

What is your degree and/or area of focus?

I am working on a Ph.D. in Educational Policy and Leadership Studies with a concentration in Higher Education Administration.  My research interests are student military veterans and civic engagement.

As a veteran, what has your experience been attending the University of Iowa College of Education?

Dating back to when I was a prospective student visiting campus, the Dr. Paul D. Larson I-SERVE office stood out to me as a place where veterans were a valued contributor toward the college’s educational mission.  With former dean Nicholas Colangelo’s strong commitment to student veterans, I knew the College of Education was the place for me to do my graduate studies.  During my first year of study this year, I received unwavering support and encouragement from staff and faculty throughout the college, I am also grateful that our new dean, Dan Clay, continues that tradition of strong support for student veterans and enlisted. 

Why would you recommend other veterans consider going into a field of education, counseling, and/or rehabilitation?

Military veterans and their families (i.e. spouses and dependents) have gained unique skills from their time in service that can transfer well to careers in education, counseling, and rehabilitation.  Many service members find that they have a natural comfort level while teaching in the classroom that comes from leadership and instructional experiences while serving in the military.  Realizing the natural connection between military service and teaching, the federal government created programs like Troops to Teachers to bring the tremendous instructional skills veterans possess into the classroom.  Depending on the program level and educational field of study, funding may be available to cover part or all of student veterans’ education in these fields. 

What resources does the College of Education offer veterans? And/or what sets the College of Education apart in terms of a place for veterans to continue their education?

The College of Education is leading the way across the university campus as the only college to have its own veterans’ resource center for student veterans and their families to enroll, learn, graduate and lead in communities throughout the state of Iowa.  With  veterans’ initiatives being a high priority in the college, veterans can thrive while doing their academic work here, which can help catapult their careers both inside and outside the academy.

At the Dr. Paul D. Larson I-SERVE office, we provide necessary and critical support to veterans and their families through scholarship opportunities, veteran-centered programming and events, a veterans resource center, such as self-help veterans transition books and other academic resources for researching the veteran population, and job placement assistance following graduation.  These resources, along with a strong network of support for student veterans, make the College of Education the ideal place for student veterans to pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees.  

Where can student veterans and enlisted students find you if they want to meet or learn more about resources and opportunities?

I am located in the Dr. Paul D. Larson I-SERVE Office, which is in Room N122 of the N110 collaborative high tech space on the first floor of Lindquist Center North. We were very fortunate to recently have one of our generous alumni contribute a gift to name our office. This will also create the I-SERVE Excellence Fund, and provide programmatic support to benefit our student veterans and enlisted in the College of Education.

Contact Information:

Jeremy Williams
Veterans Resource Specialist
Dr. Paul D. Larson I-SERVE office or

 College of Education
The University of Iowa
N122 Lindquist Center
Iowa City, IA  52242-1529

For more information, visit the I-SERVE website.