A trained combat engineer in the Army Reserve, Alec is currently leading a team that's in charge of training the Afghan National Army (ANA) on route clearance. But his long journey to Afghanistan began back when he was at RMU.
When he was a freshman, his company was sent away for two weeks for training. When he got back to Robert Morris, Alec's biology professor let him postpone taking a test until he had time to catch up on homework. Then there was the extra effort that RMU's veterans office put in to make sure he got his full veteran's education benefits reimbursement for his classes.
Through his current deployment, Alec is learning a lot about the Afghani culture and way of life. "Some of them know decent English," he says, "which is very impressive, because many of them don't even know how to write their own name. The ones that know some English are teaching me their native tongue of Dari."
It is still a war zone, however, as Alec was reminded this April 4, when he was close enough to hear the blast that killed three Ohio National Guardsmen. "Those guys are on the same FOB [forward operating base] as me. So it was a very somber day and brought more realization that we are still at war."
Even though he's currently deployed, Alec is still focusing on his future and has been keeping in contact with the HR rep at a worldwide environmental engineering and consulting company with offices in Pittsburgh. "I gave them my resume and they said that they'll have an interview waiting for me when I get back home," he says. "So I'm really excited about that."
RMU offers generous veterans college benefits, closing any gap between the post 9/11 veteran's education benefits allotment and our tuition for qualifying veterans