OCCC student veterans receive above-and-beyond help

Almost 600 military veterans attend classes at OCCC, said Janis Armstrong, Veterans Services coordinator. The enrollment of veterans indicates that OCCC is a good fit for them, she said.

Classes are offered later in the evening compared to other universities that may not be as flexible in their hours.

OCCC evening classes start at 5:30 and 8 p.m. making it easier for veterans who are trying to balance their work schedule as well as their families.

The Veteran’s Services office is located just past the enrollment office on the first floor of the Main Building.

Armstrong said she and her staff handle the veterans’ GI Bill benefits, which is basically their educational benefits.

One of the biggest issues is veterans who need to claim disability and need to be pointed in the right direction, Armstrong said. She said the OCCC veterans office can help.

“We are set up to give them names and numbers to refer them,” she said.

Armstrong encourages any military veteran working on getting disability to contact her at 405-682-7527 or at jarmstrong@occc.edu.

One of the places the office refers to is the Veterans Corner in Goldsby, Oklahoma, south of Norman, Armstrong said.

“It is solely volunteers and they will help veterans get their claims started,” she said.

Dependents also are a very big factor as well, Armstrong said. These are people who benefit from someone in their family having served in the military. These dependents vary from children to spouses.

At OCCC, the veterans office handles all affairs with dependents and their benefits from the GI Bill or any other money they may receive.

The GI Bill is money the government pays to veterans based on their years of service.

“It’s not [just] veterans but their dependents as well,” Armstrong said.

In the Veteran’s Services office on campus, there are many veterans working to assist their fellow veterans, Armstrong said.

She said it’s a comfortable place where these vets can sit down, and really feel like they are being understood and assisted.

For more information, contact Veteran’s Services at www.occc.edu/veterans, or 405-682-1611, ext. 7694.

The office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.


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