Boots to Books to help student-veterans – Community
Published on July 30, 2021 |
by University Communications
Student veterans and students affiliated with Saint Leo’s Army have a new opportunity to apply for book funding.
Boots to Books, a 501c3 organization, and Dr. Luke McClees, Director of the Office of Military Affairs and Services at Saint Leo (OMAS), have created a way for military-related students to receive help with purchasing textbooks and course supplies.
Saint Leo students will be able to apply for the need-based program through Office of Military Affairs and Services responses pinned on their Lions SHARE page or by contacting the office.
Faculty and staff are asked to refer students to OMAS or can contact McClees at firstname.lastname@example.org.
McClees regularly reaches out to students, and over the past year and due to the changes brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, he has found students who need extra help.
The pandemic has caused changes in employment and family education, creating obstacles for many military-related university students. This path and this partnership is one of the last forms of financial aid that OMAS can put in contact with students to help them finance their studies.
In addition, the office has produced an alphabetical list of nearly 200 reliable scholarships for which students can apply, and OMAS provides information on endowed scholarships as well as the emergency fund. This fund is used for students who face unexpected life situations.
Boots to Books is a veteran-led non-profit organization that operates nationwide to help veterans access education and employment. Peter Cline, one of the organization’s co-founders, was inspired to focus on this after going through his own transition from the military, McClees said.
As he left the military, Cline noticed the lack of information provided by the government to those pursuing competitive training and employment for those leaving military service.
“He used that void and the help he got from a friend as fuel to start helping others,” McClees said. The organization has helped more than 60 veterans over the past three months.
Students who require Boots to Book services must complete the online form and indicate that they are students of Saint Leo University. While aid is awarded on a need basis, this allows Boots to Book and the Office of Military Affairs and Services to track students.
For more information, email Militaryservices@saintleo.edu, email@example.com or call (352) 588-6703 or (352) 588-8234.