By Josselyn Berry

Contemporary Culture Editor

Imagine a traumatic experience in your life. An accident, a death, something you couldn’t have handled alone. Now imagine going to war and coming back to people who have no idea of the things you saw.

Many veterans have gone through exactly this. Nate Terani, a 31-year-old veteran, experienced this when he came out of service in 2006. However, Terani didn’t want the veterans at PVCC to join him in that feeling.

This semester PVCC will finally have an active veterans club. The club was started around six years ago, but failed due to lack of participation. Terani, along with Ceryll Moore, re-established the club to provide much needed support to the veterans at PVCC.

“Service to country, service to community,” is the motto Terani chose for the club. Terani wants the club to be a place where veterans feel safe to talk and seek help from fellow vets.

“I wanted to create an environment that is safe and familiar for veterans and military spouses and dependents to voice their concerns and ideas,” Terani explains.

This desire stem from Terani’s own time spent in the U.S. Navy, the Reserve and the Defense Intelligence Agency. Terani joined the navy’s first presidential honor guard in D.C. in 1996. When Terani was released from the military he had the opportunity to attend Columbia University in New York on the money from his G.I. Bill.

The G.I. Bill is run by the Department of Veteran’s Affairs and provides educational benefits to all veterans and even for a few dependents of veterans. Dependents of veterans include spouses, family members and significant others.

Terani was only able to attend Columbia for one semester, but while he was there, he was in their veterans club, MilVets.

“It was a light in the dark,” Terani says.

After his time in the military, Terani says he had a tough time, and the ultimate thing he missed were the men and women he served with.

“There’s a bond you share with the people you served with,” he explains.

Terani said he felt a sense of being alone, but the Columbia club helped ease that, and he wanted to bring that to PVCC.

Plans for the club are few right now, as it is still young, but Terani would like to do charity projects such as volunteering at the Veteran’s Hospital in Phoenix and hosting care package drives for the troops. Overall, Terani wants the club to raise awareness of military and veteran’s issues.

The club also welcomes non-veterans. Many members are girlfriends, boyfriends, or friends of people serving, who Terani says, “ want to know what its like from our perspective.”

The club is currently working with the counseling department to have certain counselors specialize in veteran’s affairs. Terani knows there are many veterans who attend the school, but have no one with whom to discuss their experiences.

“I wish there was more recognition of veterans and how to deal with possible variations of their moods and what may seem like abnormal behavior,” Terani says.

Terani will only be attending PVCC for one semester before he transfers to ASU. For the sake of the club, though, Terani is considering splitting classes between the two schools to keep the club running.

The club has no set meeting schedule yet, but the tentative date for the next meeting is November 1. For further information contact Veteran’s club faculty adviser, Thomas Powell at (602) 787-7188,


Last updated: Nov. 15, 2008

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