The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Advertisement
Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Advertisement
Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Sixth sense
Neil Jhurani, Sports Writer • June 18, 2024

There’s nothing quite like Omaha when June rolls around.  Fans from across the country head to Charles Schwab Field to watch their teams...

Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Saves and a robbery
June 16, 2024
Advertisement
Enjoying the Destination
Enjoying the Destination
Cara Hudson, Maroon Life Writer • June 17, 2024

For the history buffs, there’s a story to why Bryan and College Station are so closely intertwined. In 1871 when the Texas Legislature approved...

Advertisement
Chris Hemsworth as Dementus in Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga.
Review: ‘Furiosa’ is a must-see
Justin Chen June 4, 2024

My jaw dropped open in 2016. Rarely in life does that happen, but the viewing experience of “Mad Max: Fury Road" was something to behold....

Texas A&M pitcher Ryan Prager (18) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Kentucky at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 17, 2024. Prager went for 6.2 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Sixth sense
June 18, 2024
Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) robs a home run from Florida infielder Cade Kurland (4) in the top of the ninth inning during Texas A&M’s game against Florida at the NCAA Men’s College World Series at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Sunday, June 15, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
Saves and a robbery
June 16, 2024

Student Veterans of America president visits Bryan-College Station

Student+Veterans+of+America+President+and+CEO+Jared+Lyon+%28center%29+with+Texas+A%26amp%3BM+SVA+President+Nethaniel+Gjesdal+and+event+coordinator%26%23160%3BAlyssa+Knuth.
Photo by Courtesy

Student Veterans of America President and CEO Jared Lyon (center) with Texas A&M SVA President Nethaniel Gjesdal and event coordinator Alyssa Knuth.

The veterans who gathered in Downtown Bryan all came from different walks of life, cultures and branches of the military, but all are united through their service.
One of these veterans is Jared Lyon, president and CEO of Student Veterans of America (SVA), who was invited to speak with Texas A&M’s SVA members Monday evening in Downtown Bryan. Lyon focussed on unifying diverse communities of veterans in college through leadership.
“We’re coming together to demonstrate, not only Texas A&M here in College Station but Texas A&M as a whole, with their sister schools too, in which we show how to be a leader,” Lyon said. “When we look at this, we don’t want to just focus on veterans, but non-traditional students as within the great state of Texas.”
The SVA is an organization for student veterans to join all over the country. The organization aims to give back to the community in the form of service, helping veterans study and even linking up members with fortune 500 companies for jobs after school. Jobs include companies like Texas Instruments, BP Oil and Eli Lilly Pharmaceuticals.
Lyon continued his efforts Tuesday afternoon, as he met with A&M System Chancellor John Sharp and other decision makers within the network of 11 A&M system universities, presenting national data on student veterans and their experiences in the world of higher education.
“I hope people walk away with the understanding of the differentiation that our generation of veterans brings back home to our country after we take off our uniform and that is innate desire that everything we find, see or touch is something better than the way it was before,” Lyon said.
Before becoming SVA president in 2016, Lyon took it upon himself to enlist into the Navy on August 5, 2001. He became a submariner and diver as he served in multiple global deployments in support of global war on terrorism.
“The world fundamentally changed when I was in basic training in Great Lakes, Illinois,” Lyons said. “Evil men hell bent on destroying the fabric of our United States and successfully carried out the largest attack on our land since Pearl Harbor; the world not only changed for me that day but it changed for hundreds and thousands of other lives as well. That was my introduction to the fleet.”
Upon separating from the Navy in 2005, Lyon worked on electric systems for Northrop Grumman while working on an associate’s degree in East Florida. Five years later, Lyon finished his Bachelor of Science from Florida State University. While in school, he said he looked to make great strides within the culture of other veterans, serving as the schools SVA president, the Natural Program Manager for the Institute of Veterans and even the Military Family’s Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with disabilities.
“He has done a number of things that have really personified about helped veterans all around the country, like we aim to accomplish through our own offices,” Col. Jerry Smith, Class of 1982 and director of A&M’s veteran resource and support center, said.
Smith and his team are responsible for over 1,150 veterans on campus. He served in the United States Marine Corps as an artillery officer and traveled the world for 26 years before coming back to College Station as a professor of naval science in 2008.
“A&M has been supporting veterans for almost 100 years, and when you look at that first century as a whole, we’ve had some rough times in our country when they didn’t get enough support and we want uphold what they need at our university,” Lewis said.
Nathaniel Gjesdal, president of the A&M’s SVA and sociology senior, said his involvement in the organization has been a beneficial part of his college experience.
“When I came to Texas A&M, I did a little research and found that student veterans on campus that get involved have more success with their studies and grades, and when I found out that an opportunity was present with the Student Veterans Association I jumped, and everything has fallen into place,” Gjesdal said.
Gjesdal served as a corporal in the United States Army as an airborne medic from 2006-2012. He then attended Blinn College and transferred to A&M. After graduation, he said his next plan is to obtain his masters from the Bush School of Government and Public Service.
“From the Texas A&M University system as a whole, our veteran support from the staff and faculty is enormously strong, and truly that is something to embrace to be an example for others to see how we as student veterans continue to succeed and how we represent ourselves,” Gjesdal said. “We want to be and continue to be the example, and that means a lot to us.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *