On November 11, we commemorate Veterans Day in tribute to the men and women who have served the United States in the armed forces. Across Rutgers, we take pride in the dedicated service of those who have served in uniform, some of them still on active duty.
Playing a pivotal role in helping our veterans advance and succeed in their studies at Rutgers is the Office of Veteran and Military Programs and Services as well as campus-based resources that support the men and women on active duty and those making the transition to civilian life.
This week at the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences (SEBS), we honor the dedicated service of our veterans by profiling SEBS students and alumni who have served or are currently serving in the military.
Racheal Kim (SEBS ’21) is a nutrition major, minoring in psychology and military science. Kim’s hometown is Princeton Junction, NJ and she currently serves in the National Guard. While she is not a yet a veteran, we asked her to share her experience combining her military service and college career.
Q: Please tell us about yourself; why did you choose SEBS and your major? Are there military services at Rutgers that helped you adjust to college life? What do you hope to do after you graduate?
A: I enlisted into the New Jersey Army National Guard in 2017 and later joined Rutgers ROTC in 2019, committed to become an active duty Army Officer after graduation from Rutgers University.
I have always been passionate about healthy living, so Nutritional Sciences was an obvious choice of study when I came to Rutgers. I have always wanted to be able to help communities in a meaningful and positive way, particularly those in underdeveloped communities, and I knew Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences could help me achieve this. The faculty and staff within SEBS have a contagious dedication and enthusiasm for what they do, which has inspired me to pursue becoming a community nutritionist.
The staff at the Rutgers Veteran Affairs office has helped me tremendously since I’ve returned from Basic Combat Training and Advanced Individual Training in 2017. The office has provided me with all of the necessary resources in accessing benefits and has offered tremendous assistance to allow me to succeed at Rutgers. The Veteran Affairs office also offers a work study position, in which I was able to meet many other prior service and veteran students at Rutgers. ROTC has been a great experience for me as well. I found a community of like-minded and motivated students and found invaluable mentorship from the upperclassmen and cadre.
During and upon completion of my military career, I look forward to serving the community in a meaningful and positive way. I hope to empower, educate, and assist people to live healthier lives and help create lasting changes within communities for the next generations.