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Joseph Schlabach

Adams State University SECond Mission AmeriCorps VISTA
Joe is a VISTA at Adams State University. Joe is a Marine Corps/IOF veteran and he currently lives in Monte Vista, Colorado. His AmeriCorps mission is to provide better access to education for veterans, as well as building and supporting systems designed to reduce veteran poverty in the San Luis Valley. 
He has  two major projects he is currently working on. First, he is working with Veteran Fields to connect veterans to local farmers and help veterans start up their own agricultural related businesses. Second, he is writing two grants for the Adams State University Veterans Center, to help provide funding for veterans currently attending Adams State University and to buy computers and furniture for the Veterans Center, in order to provide more space for veterans to study in peace and quiet. He just wrapped up a very successful Veteran New Student Orientation and his future goals are to focus on a re-branding initiative for the Veterans Center, as well as helping Adams State apply to become one of the top 100 vet friendly schools in the United States, his tentative final project will be to set up classes specifically designed to help veterans understand their benefits and how to access them, as well as starting the process for the Veteran New Student Orientation next fall.


This isn’t a story about war, about the wounds—both visible and invisible—that soldiers are left to carry after war, or the trauma that goes hand in hand with being a soldier.  You won’t find details of battle or unsettling imagery in this tale.  This story is about strength and determination beyond the experience of war; this story embodies the power of self-identity as a veteran.  It’s a story of integrating the person that you once were with the person you are now...