The Mesquite Online News - Texas A&M University-San Antonio

Event to honor ongoing veterans crisis

Event to honor ongoing veterans crisis - The Mesquite Online News - Texas A&M University-San Antonio

ROTC cadets teach A&M-San Antonio students physical training drills during a leadership mentoring program in 2018. This year, ROTC will partner with the Office of Military Affairs in hosting an 11-station workout challenge 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Nov. 9 on the East Lawn across from Patriots’ Casa. File photo by Kevin Castro

The Office of Military Affairs will host an 11-station workout challenge 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Nov. 9 on the East Lawn across from Patriots’ Casa.

In honor of Veterans Day, 22 ADDS UP! HEADS UP! is one of multiple events throughout the week of Nov. 7-11 at Texas A&M University-San Antonio. This year, ROTC will partner with the Office of Military Affairs to motivate students to participate in the workout challenge.

At each of the 11 stations, participants must complete 22 reps of exercises that include pushups, squats or lunges. Anyone that completes the 11 stations twice is eligible to win the Ultimate Swag Bag, composed of merchandise from both the Office of Military Affairs and ROTC

John Sutton, 2nd Lt. Gold Bar Recruiter for ROTC, and Arielle Benjamin, administrative associate for the Office of Military Affairs, shared the importance and story behind why this event is included in the honoring of Veterans Day.

“The purpose of this event is to draw awareness to veterans’ suicide and veterans crisis, stuff of that nature.” Sutton said, “That’s why everything is based on 22, because of the unfortunate statistic that 22 veterans a day are dying by suicide.”

According to Benjamin, although this event is about bringing awareness to the issue, it is a workout challenge that offers prizes and fun activities for students. Snacks and water will be offered at the event, and participants are encouraged to wear athletic attire while also preparing for the upcoming cooler weather. 

“We will also be giving out Veteran Crisis Center merchandise and pamphlets, just in case anybody feels that information may pertain to them, or somebody that they know and love.” Benjamin said.

Benjamin’s hope is to show students that the school not only has an ROTC program but to also break down the misunderstanding of having to join the military if you want to be a part of ROTC. It is like any other club or organization with the goal of bringing a specific kind of group together.

A&M-San Antonio offers both Army and Air Force ROTC while being known as a campus embracing of the military.

The event is free. Students can find the event on Jagsync and RSVP, though it’s not required. Students also are welcome to join the day of the event. 

For more information, contact Benjamin at abenjamin@tamusa.edu or 210-784-1174.

For more information about Veterans Day events on campus, go here.

About the Author

Riana Tovar
Riana Tovar is a communications junior at Texas A&M University-San Antonio. She received her Associate of Studio Arts from Lamar State College-Port Arthur in August 2022. She is a gymnastics coach in addition to being a full-time student and college softball athlete. In her spare time, she enjoys taking pictures, coaching softball and painting. Upon graduating, she hopes to pursue a career in social media management or digital media.

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