VA NY Harbor Health Care System
Veterans Integration To Academic Leadership (VITAL)
|5 Tips for Student Veterans Starting Their Undergraduate Degrees
by Peter Terrafranca
What is VITAL?
Veterans Integration To Academic Leadership is VA’s approach to reaching out to student Veterans to help facilitate the transition from service member to student.
The VITAL Initiative is a partnership between VA New York Harbor Healthcare System and local colleges and universities. We’re here to help you navigate your needs and concerns and maximize your unique set of strengths, skills and life experiences as you develop and translate your interests and talents into the academic setting.
As a Veteran did you know?
- You have access to VA on campus to navigate VA services and benefits:
Available Monday-Friday 9am-4:30pm
Yvette Branson, (646) 772-6087
- You have an ally at school who understands your unique needs as a student Veteran.
- Free tutoring through Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) and Peer Mentoring
- VA Work Study opportunities
- Counseling and ongoing treatment for readjustment, stress, anger, depression, anxiety and sleep problems.
- Refer and work with the university to request academic accommodations.
- Coping strategies for classroom difficulties -- attention, concentration, restlessness.
- Assist with enrollment and care at VA New York Harbor Healthcare System.
- Obtain help and resources from within the VA and its affiliates including Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) and Vocational Rehabilitation Services.
- Tai Chi and Distress Tolerance Groups
- Education for college/university staff about Military & Veteran culture.
- Consult about Veteran-specific issues that impact performance and academic success.
- Work with college/university counseling centers in serving the unique readjustment needs of Veterans.
- Assist with communication between VA New Harbor Healthcare System and college/university staff about your concerns, resources and needs.
What to Expect
- VITAL will maintain absolute confidentiality.
- Prompt response to phone or email inquiries about the VITAL program.
- Veteran-centered perspective keeping the Veteran’s well-being and best interest in mind.
- The primary goal of the program is to support the Veteran’s efforts to complete your education as you transition to civilian life.
Yvette Branson, PhD
Coordinator, VITAL Initiative
VA NY Harbor Healthcare System
• Columbia University (VITAL)
• CUNY – Baruch (VITAL)
• CUNY – Borough of Manhattan Community College (VITAL)
• CUNY – York (VITAL)
• Fordham University (VITAL)
• CUNY Queens College
• CUNY Queensborough Community College
• School of Visual Arts
• NY Film Academy
• CUNY John Jay
• CUNY Laguardia Community College
• Pace University
• New York University
• DeVry College
• Manhattan College
• Metropolitan College of NY
• St. Johns University
• Sierra Club Military Outdoors
• Service Women\'s Action Network (SWAN)
• Team Red, White and Blue-workouts
• Urban Justice Veterans Advocacy Project
- See Vital Campuses List Below
Hours of Operation