Our History

The history of Rutgers students who have served in the military is a long and distinguished one. Since the beginning, our students have answered their nations’ call. Students of Queens College left their classes to fight for their country’s independence as the British landed on New Jersey’s shores. Graduates requested their diploma as they fought to keep the nation together during the Civil War. They outnumbered their civilian classmates after World War II utilizing the first GI Bill, and now, after the longest period of sustained warfare in American history, the number of Rutgers students who have served in the United States Armed Forces has more than doubled in the last five years.

As a new generation of veterans began to arrive on Rutgers campuses, President Richard McCormick formed the Committee on Veterans’ Services and charged its members with the task of providing recommendations to improve services to the student veteran population. The committee published their report January 20, 2009 offering fourteen recommendations one of which was to dedicate an office to serve this growing population and the Office of Veteran and Military Programs and Services was established in 2010.

There are monuments, plaques and memorials scattered across our campuses that demonstrate the university’s recognition of the service and sacrifice of its student veterans. It is the purpose of Rutgers’ nationally recognized programs and services[1], however, that these students come to know that their service is appreciated.

[1] Since 2013, Military Times Best for Vets: Colleges survey has ranked Rutgers University in the top 15 colleges in the United States.