Veteran's student center holds grand opening

WINCHESTER, Ore. -- Umpqua Community College celebrated the grand opening of its new student veterans center on Thursday.

Over 100 veterans attend school at UCC, and now they have a place to call home in a brand new state of the art veterans center.

College administrators say the idea of having a space dedicated to the needs of student veterans has been on their mind for years.

Rick Aman, the vice president for student services, says it's all about helping the students succeed. "What this is, is a nice way for them to ease back into college life, because the whole key is for them to be successful," he said.

Funded largely by community donations, students started using the center last fall.

Paul Eckel, the president of Veterans of UCC, says it's a great way for veteran students to get together and study. "It's quiet, it's well received, you're with people of like mindedness, and I just really appreciate having the opportunity to get away, be quiet and just, study," he said.

In addition to studying, having the camaraderie of fellow veterans is comforting to some. "This is partially for them to socialize with each other," Aman said. "They have a lot in common, and the other is a quiet study space, and we have, I think, five computers in there for the students."