The Center for Adult Learners and Veterans (CALV) is joining in the national recognition of those who have served in our armed forces with an early Veterans Day celebration this Wednesday, Nov. 8, at the Campus Center.
As we approach Veterans Day each year, CALV arranges a gathering on the UWG campus to honor all veterans and people who have family members that are deployed or that have served the country. The holiday was conceived to celebrate the ending of World War I and to honor U.S. veterans and victims of all wars. It is held on Nov. 11 each year.
Since Veteran Day falls on a Saturday this year, CALV decided to hold the event during the week to allow participants to celebrate with their families on the day of holiday. The celebration is also open to the general public.
“In the past, we found that if the holiday falls on a weekend, having the event on a Friday is no good because there are so many people who don’t have Friday classes,” said Danny Gourley, Director of Center for Adult Learners and Veterans. “Also, we have found that there are so many events happening on the day of throughout the community, and we’d just end up competing with that. So we chose Wednesday when things will not be really busy.”
The celebration will open with a presentation of the colors by the Air Force Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps from Central High School here in Carrollton, followed by an acapella performance of the national anthem by four UWG music majors. Guest speaker and UWG President Dr. Kyle Marrero is scheduled to give a speech about how much the university values our veterans, both in the classroom and in the workforce.
“I will also give some information about the impact of our veterans in the classroom, like how they’re performing and what they do in our classrooms,” said Gourley. “Then we will give the audience members an opportunity to share stories of how veterans may have touched their lives, before we take down the colors and conclude that portion of the ceremony.”
Audience members will then get an opportunity to socialize and gather with members of the community as celebrations will continue at a reception held in the CALV office. Food and refreshments will be provided by Dine West.
Unlike previous years, invitations were sent out to all veteran groups located in the Carroll County area, including the American Legion, and the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).
“We actually physically drove to their locations and dropped off posters as ways of invitations,” said Gourley. “So far, we don’t have any idea yet how many people might come, but we are expecting more community members this year than in past years.”
To further spread the word about the event, CALV also did interviews with Carrollton Menu and the Times Georgian to ensure the news was reaching people.
“It’s an important time to remember and reflect on people who have made sacrifices for us,” said Gourley. “They come back with changed lives – both good and bad. So it is just about recognizing the tribute of both their service and what they bring back to the community.”