The Southern Illinois University System hosted a Veteran’s Summit on September 12-13, 2019 to address the unique challenges veterans in our region face in accessing healthcare, legal assistance and educational opportunities. The objective of the summit, held at the Mt. Vernon Armory, was to strengthen the rural healthcare infrastructure, legal support structure and the educational delivery system for veterans through the creation of strategic partnerships, and improved collaboration and communication among all system partners, veterans serving organizations, governmental agencies, and elected officials.
The summit was a two-day event. The Veteran’s Summit Symposium, hosted on the first day brought together SIU system partners, speakers, community-based organizations, governmental agencies, elected officials and other stakeholders to begin developing a blueprint to improve service delivery to the Southern Illinois veteran community. The Veteran’s Summit Resource Connection Fair on day two was a day of service open to all veterans where the SIU System and veteran serving organizations provided educational, medicinal, dental and legal appointments/referrals free of charge.
Identify and document the root causes of healthcare, legal and educational challenges faced in our veteran population and find innovative solutions to improve the health of veterans and their families. To lay the foundation for a successful Veteran’s Summit, data was collected before the official Summit. This data collection included conducting surveys of veterans and also some key stakeholder focus group sessions to narrow down topics for discussion during Day 1 of the Summit.
PSP Team Members
Robert R. McCormick Foundation
Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Southern Illinois University School of Law
The objective of the summit, held at the Mt. Vernon Armory, was to strengthen the rural healthcare infrastructure, legal support structure and the educational delivery system for veterans through the creation of strategic partnerships, and improved collaboration and communication among all system partners, a veteran serving organizations, governmental agencies, and elected officials.
Veterans Summit brief:
As a direct result of the Summit, the SIU School of Law and the SIU School of Medicine partnered to start the Veterans Legal Assistance and Medical Program (VetLAMP). The School of Law had previously established a program to assist veterans with service-related disability claims. The Summit allowed for a further partnership that brings in medical students/practitioners to assist with the medical review of the veterans’ medical records.
Read the full brief, here.