USC Aiken Welcomes Students Using Military Tradition

Military students who make a public commitment to a goal within higher education โ€” be it graduating or completing a program of study โ€” will receive a "challenge coin," as part of a new tradition adopted by the University of South Carolina's Aiken Office of Veteran and Military Student Success, reports the Aiken Standard.

190904 F Nc065 1013The first coins were awarded on Aug. 19th during a ceremony that welcomed military students and veteran students to the university. USCA Chancellor Dr. Daniel Heimmermann was the first to receive a coin after making a public commitment to student success, adding that he will share a student success plan by the end of the first semester.  

โ€œMy commitment is to student success and doing something I know military people can appreciate: walk the walk,โ€ Heimmermann said, according to the Aiken Standard. "All universities claim to be student focused and can claim to support student success, but this university is going to do it; and Iโ€™m going to use my substance and the resources of my office in support of students."

A total of 45 students received coins at the inaugural coin ceremony created to foster student success and welcome students though a familiar military tradition.

Robert Murphy, the director of the Office of Veteran and Military Student Success, told the Aiken Standard that challenge coins have been a tradition within the U.S. military since World War I. Historically, they've been given to enhance morale during tough challenges or to recognize a special achievement. 

โ€œItโ€™s a coin that represents good work, good deeds, camaraderie, cohesion," said Murphy. "And what a better way to welcome this group of students to this university by doing the same tradition that we have in the military by honoring them with the challenge coin?โ€

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