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March 2020 Team Leader of the Month: Traci Trainor, Grand Valley State University

Photo of Traci Trainor From Stephen Lipnicki, Assistant Dean of Students at GVSU: “Like many Team Leaders, Traci is bright, exceptionally dedicated, and committed to helping her military sisters and brothers in any way that she is able! In addition to providing support and leadership for the Peer Advisors, Traci used her position to create new opportunities to connect with military-connected students by also serving as an officer with the University’s Student Veterans of America (SVA) chapter. Her willingness to serve in these complementary roles has opened doors and brought veterans to the Student Veterans Lounge. By providing the opportunity for casual interaction in a judgment-free zone, veterans are often comfortable enough to freely share concerns, issues, or questions with students they trust. In turn, the trained peer advisors can respond and direct students to the appropriate resources both on campus and within the greater community, but the relationships don’t end there.”

From Traci Trainor: My proudest accomplishment is that I have been able to integrate the PAVE program to work in unison with our SVA. This allows us to have extra support for tabling and event representation along with helping for recruitment. It is a beneficial relationship for both organizations to assist our student veteran population on a dual collaborative front. My favorite part of being a Team Leader is being able to recruit other fellow veterans that are willing to make time to reach out and supporting incoming student veterans. This is not something that is taken for granted, as all of the advisors previously experienced the feelings that these new student veterans when they first started too. Knowing that my advisors and myself are able to make such a small difference in easing a veterans transition into an academic setting is very fulfilling.