Sen. Sherrod Brown visits Jack W. Liebert Military & Veteran Resource Center

ASHLAND, Ohio – Ashland University welcomed a special guest to campus for Veterans Day on Thursday, as U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) visited the Jack W. Liebert Military & Veterans Resource Center.

Randy Spade, who has served as the director of military and veteran services at Ashland for five years, gave Sen. Brown a tour of the center, where he greeted seven current AU veteran students, and came away very impressed.

“What they’re doing at Ashland … I’ve never seen anywhere else in the state because nobody does what they’re doing in terms of veterans. They have this center. They also have a dorm. They also have a critical mass of veterans interacting with each other,” Sen. Brown remarked.

Having a significant veteran presence on campus provides an enriching experience for both veteran students and traditional students, noted Sen. Brown. “Another one of the things I really like is that the other hundreds of students at Ashland University see what veteran service means to the country and learn a little bit more about the world around them. I’m here on Veterans Day because it’s Veterans Day, but any day would be pretty impressive, in terms of what this university is doing.”

Sen. Brown also took the opportunity to emphasize the importance of mental health for veterans. “The Department of Defense and the Veterans Administration have to do better than they have done. It’s troubling how veterans’ suicide rates are too high. We don’t deal with mental health for veterans very well. They end their active duty … there’s little effort to integrate them into society. That’s one reason the adjustment is so hard. What Ashland University is doing is phenomenal, but we as a nation … simply haven’t done what we need to and I’m hopeful that this President and this new Senate (can) invest more in veterans’ health,” said the longtime member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.

Ashland has been lauded for its efforts to provide veterans and active-duty service members an affordable college education, ranking No. 23 in “Best Colleges for Veterans” in the Midwest Region, according to the latest U.S. News & World Report guidebook.

“I like that this school has sent a message to veterans around the country that … for those veterans who want to go to school after their service, this is a good place to do it,” Sen. Brown added.

The Jack W. Liebert Military & Veterans Resource Center opened in October 2020. It serves approximately 170 Ashland students who are veterans and their families (150 spouses and dependents). The center features study spaces and a lounge where veteran students can share a sense of camaraderie, as well as a conference room and offices for staff.

Ashland University is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University (www.ashland.edu) values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.