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  • Writer's pictureAnthony Heiland

News | 2021 Year In Review

2021 has been a productive year for VMAS. We made progress on numerous fronts and enjoyed some in-person events including our first ever VMAS Golf Outing. Our leadership team saw some changes, we held our first online fundraiser, and we also began developing our first benefit program which is aimed at providing financial assistance to those in need who are looking to advance their career.

Some notable updates from 2021 include;

On August 28th we held our Inaugural Golf Outing at the Beavercreek Golf Club. While each member of the VMAS team played their part in the planning and execution of the event, it was VMAS Treasurer Ken Folino who truly enabled this event’s success. Ken’s experience and leadership were key in every aspect of the outing and the VMAS team wants to thank him for all the extra time he volunteered to make sure this event went smoothly.

This year we held our first “Student Engagement” events with the Wright State Veteran & Military Center. These events will become a regular occurrence as we work toward increasing our visibility on-campus with the veteran and military-connected students of Wright State.

On November 10th VMAS and the Wright State Veteran & Military Center sponsored a trip to the National Veterans Memorial & Museum in Columbus, Ohio. The VMC provided transportation for alumni, students, and VMC staff who were able to tour the museum in observation of Veteran's Day. Our group contained Veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan from the Army, Air Force, and Marine Corps.

2021 Member Highlights

Ericka Laforse, Wright State Alumni, Member of the Executive Committee, and Chair of the Membership and Engagement Committee. Ericka served eight years of Honorable Active Duty Service with the United States Army trained as a Vehicle Wheel Repair and Recovery Specialist. She also worked as an Administrative Specialist and then a Training Non-Commissioned Officer. During her time in the military, she was stationed at Fort Jackson, SC; Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD; Fort Hood, TX; Yongsan, Korea; Iraq; and again back to Fort Hood, TX.

Paul Fleischman, Wright State Alumni, and Chair of the Finance and Fundraising Committee. Paul served in the United States Marine Corps from 2000 through 2006 and earned a Bachelor's degree in Earth and Environmental Sciences from Wright State University in 2013. Paul heard about VMAS through a fellow Marine he served with, who currently serves as the VMAS Treasurer. Paul noticed what Ken Folino was up to with VMAS on Facebook. After learning more about our mission and realizing he could help fellow veteran/military connected Wright State students, he signed up.

Steven Strain, Wright State Alumni, and a member of VMAS. He earned a B. A. Criminal Justice at Wright State in 2012 and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Dayton in 2015. Steve served in the United States Marine Corps. He plays a vital role in the VMAS Steering Committee. Steve found VMAS through Executive Committee members Paul Fleischman and Ken Folino, as they were running miles for dollars in their first fundraising drive. Seeing fellow Marines getting involved made him want to start attending meetings and learn more about the organization.

VMAS 2022 Events

Don’t forget to check out the Wright State Alumni Association calendar for more events.

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