Arnold Foundation funds new program for Valley Veterans

by Susan Hawksworth


Central Valley veterans will have new opportunities to earn undergraduate degrees at Fresno State thanks to a $100,000 gift from the Red and Nancy Arnold Foundation.

The Veterans Education Program will launch its new Veterans Onboard program in the fall to help Valley veterans and current service members transition into higher education. The Arnold Foundation gift will help pay for instruction, technology, and other resources for veterans interested in attending Fresno State.

Dr. Daniel Bernard, director of the Veterans Education Program, says the program provides support for veterans transitioning from military life to an academic setting.

“It can be difficult for those in the military to adjust upon returning from active duty,” Bernard says. “They may feel isolated or feel like they don’t fit in to the college lifestyle. This cohort-based program continues the camaraderie found in the military and provides student veterans the complete college experience in an encouraging and welcoming environment.”

Classes in the program are designed for honorably discharged veterans, active duty military members and national guard members or reservists. The program concentrates on oral and written communication, critical thinking, quantitative reasoning and lifelong learning. Two tracks will be available: one for first-year student veterans looking for a part-time course schedule and a second for those who wish to take additional advanced coursework.

The Arnold family has a long history of supporting veterans. Red Arnold’s bother, Pat, served in the U.S. Air Force.

“The Arnold Foundation was quick to embrace the vision of the Veterans Education Program,” says Dr. Scott Moore, Fresno State’s dean of the Division of Continuing and Global Education. “They are staunch supporters of veteran initiatives and have become a major partner with the University.”

The Veterans Education Program, located in the Lab School on campus, creates a sense of belonging for veterans by providing a lounge, study area, smart classroom and academic skill sets needed for successful careers. These resources are available to current Fresno State student veterans as well as to those who are currently service-connected.

For more information on the Veterans Onboard Program, visit


— Susan Hawksworth is program and marketing specialist for the Division of Continuing and Global Education at Fresno State.