VA Benefits – VITAL Program for Mental Fitness in College

Many Veterans enter college and university life directly out of the military. This is a significant life transition, and most people need time to adjust to the new setting, culture, and experiences of campus life. This transition is more difficult for some Veterans than for others. They may need more help with physical or mental health issues or with the practical aspects of transitioning to this new environment.

Going from something familiar — like military life — to something new and different — like school — can be hard, but there are things you can do to make it easier. Try to remember to:

  • Start with a few courses to ease the transition.
  • Reach out to other Veterans on your campus for social support.
  • Get to know your new professors, tell them you’re a Veteran, and ask for advice on how you can be successful in the classroom.
  • When studying, take as many breaks as you need; find a study partner when possible.
  • Take advantage of your school’s academic, tutoring, and academic counseling services.
  • Recognize your own signs of stress, and look for daily ways to manage that stress.
  • Exercise regularly and practice relaxation techniques to help reduce anxiety and improve concentration.
  • Participate in student activities to break down barriers and become part of the campus community.
  • Recognize that others may not agree with you or understand your military service; agree to disagree.
  • Seek out social activities that don’t revolve around alcohol and drugs.
  • Be prepared for direct questions about your service, sometimes in very public, seemingly inappropriate situations; practice ahead of time how you would like to respond.
  • Respectfully decline to talk about things that make you uncomfortable.

Your family, friends, trusted classmates, and professors can be a source of stability and support. Staying in contact with them may help ease the transition and provide you with a good source of feedback for your thoughts and concerns.

VITAL PROGRAMS watch the Video https://www.maketheconnection.net/events/students-higher-education