Military and Veteran Engagement celebrated graduating service members and student veterans on Monday, May 8 in Hendrix Student Center. During the celebration of May and August graduates, Director Emily DaBruzzi announced several award winners for making positive contributions to the experiences of the student veteran and military-connected community.
Kasey Smith was the recipient of the 2023 Outstanding Student Veteran Award. The honor is presented each semester to a student who has displayed admirable leadership to veteran and military-connected peers and furthered the mission of Military and Veteran Engagement. Smith served as president of the SALUTE Veterans National Honor Society and was a member of the Student Veterans Association and Pickens County Veterans Council. An electrical engineering major, his leadership reflected in a 200-percent growth of the SALUTE chapter at Clemson.
“Kasey Is most deserving of this award based on his leadership in student organizations and for his efforts leading this year’s Mile of Honor walk, honoring those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country,” DaBruzzi said. “Additionally, he was instrumental in the efforts to keep the Clemson chapter of SALUTE active post-COVID.”
David Sargent was the recipient of the 2023 Veteran Impact Award. The honor is presented each semester to an individual whose efforts promote and support Military and Veteran Engagement’s mission of building a purposeful, engaging and veteran-inclusive campus at Clemson University.
As chair of the Clemson University Veterans Commission, he advocated for the military population, supported DaBruzzi and her team, ensured veteran care through the Michelin Career Center and helped improve data collection in the Military and Veteran Engagement Resource Center. Sargent serves as director of information technology and is a counselor in the Center for Career and Professional Development.
“Dave’s efforts have improved access to education and career readiness for veterans and military-connected students,” DaBruzzi said. “He’s displayed great enthusiasm for reducing barriers and increasing success for our students, which impacts our community in a positive way.”
DaBruzzi ended the celebration by announcing Military Leadership Awards for three students: Andrew Anspach, David Barnett and Matt Morris. Military Leadership Awards are presented annually in recognition of students who help build community to overcome challenges facing the veteran and military-connected student population, ensure full and equal participation for student veterans in the Clemson experience and take action to create positive change. Each student receives a stipend as part of the award.