Hardin-Simmons Celebrates Veterans Day

November 11, 2021 Mary Burke

Originally called Armistice Day, we celebrate Veterans Day every November 11. The name changed from Armistice Day, which only included World War I veterans, to Veterans Day in 1954, to reflect all men and women who have served.

The first Armistice Day was celebrated on November 11, 1919. This date was chosen in remembrance of the ceasefire agreement between the Allied powers and Germany that was signed at the eleventh hour, on the eleventh day, of the eleventh month the previous year, signaling the end of World War I.

Veteran Alumni gathered for breakfast during homecoming this year.

After World War II, the holiday was recognized as a day of tribute to veterans of both wars. Beginning in 1954, the United States designated November 11 as Veterans Day to honor veterans of all U.S. conflicts. Today, Veterans Day thanks and honors all who have served, particularly the living veterans among us. (Memorial Day specifically commemorates the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.)

Hardin-Simmons University has a long and rich history of military involvement and has many current students, alumni, and employees who are veterans.

SATC in front of Mary Frances Hall with Dam-it

From 1918-1919, Simmons College hosted a division of the War Department’s Student Army Training Corps (SATC). A precursor to Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC), SATC was established to provide military training in a college setting and to supply educated troops overseas during WWI.

The Alumni Wall

Alumni Wall

The Alumni Wall on campus lists the name of every student who has graduated from HSU. The next time you are on campus, pay attention to the plaques representing WWII years. The graduating classes are smaller and the male to female ratio is skewed. It is a reminder of the students who chose to leave school to serve. In comparison to the war years on the Alumni Wall, look at the boom in graduating numbers once those soldiers came home and returned to school with the aid of the GI Bill.

Even before the creation of the GI Bill in 1944 and the expansion of other veteran benefits, Hardin-Simmons has always worked with veterans to ensure they have access to an education enlightened by Christian faith and values.

HSU has an Office of Veteran Student Affairs to help veteran students and eligible family members take advantage of education benefits. HSU is also recognized as a military-friendly school and a participating institution in the Department of Defense Voluntary Education Partnership of Understanding. This semester, Hardin-Simmons enrolls 84 students who actively use VA benefits.

This Veterans Day at 12:00 p.m. on the Anderson Lawn, the campus will recognize our community of veterans through a program of speakers, prayer, and presentation of the flag. Please join us.

Hardin-Simmons University is thankful to the men and women who chose to and continue to serve the United States. May God always watch over and bless our military families.