From Canine Support to Startup Businesses, FAU Programs Aid Student Veterans

As a Top Ten Military Friendly® School, Florida Atlantic consistently elevates veterans’ educational opportunities. In particular, two successful programs emphasize mental health and well-being, and entrepreneurial skill-development. Gifts to veteran programs in the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the College of Business have enabled the university to continue its proud tradition of giving back to those who have proudly served our nation.

For a second year, philanthropic support from a generous donor is extending the Veteran Canine Rescue Mission (VCRM) housed within Canines Providing Assistance to Wounded Warriors (C-P.A.W.W.®). The program matches military veterans with specially selected shelter dogs to work together in a training regimen as a non- pharmaceutical treatment for veterans suffering from Post- Traumatic Stress Disorder and other similar conditions.

“’Saving two lives, with one rescue’ is the driving force behind this program, making it so important for programs like VCRM to continue,” the donor said. “I’m very passionate about programs that mutually benefit veterans and shelter dogs because these human-animal interactions can effectively decrease stress, provide physical exercise and improve health and well-being.”

Located within FAU’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing, C-P.A.W.W.’s VCRM is committed to positively impacting the human-animal bond, particularly as it affects veterans’ mental health and wellness. FAU students and alumni veterans, and veterans from the community are paired with, adopt and train dogs from the Humane Society of Broward County. Intensive training is then provided by the veteran-owned and operated training organization, Happy with Dogs, to ensure that canines meet the needed level of service or support for their veterans. In addition to improving veterans’ well-being, the program is also advancing the therapeutic use of shelter animals.

Student veterans who have their sights set on becoming business owners or who are current business owners can participate in an immersive educational program in Florida Atlantic University’s Adams Center for Entrepreneurship. For the eighth consecutive year, the Adams Center, housed in the College of Business, has been awarded a partnership with the Veterans Florida Entrepreneurship Program.

Funding from Veterans Florida supports entrepreneurship programs that provide student veterans with access to today’s business and community leaders as they develop skills to become tomorrow’s leaders. The agency offers qualified veterans an opportunity to participate in comprehensive entrepreneurship, business education and mentorship programs through the Adams Center.

Two eight-week courses provide comprehensive entrepreneurship training and education for participants interested in starting new businesses. A six-week course is geared towards those looking to grow existing businesses. All participants receive mentorship, and their intensive course culminates in a business pitch competition as part of this special veteran’s track.

The annual FAU Veterans Business Pitch Competition is sponsored by Office Depot and Eric H. Shaw, Ph.D., professor emeritus and FAU’s second largest faculty donor. Student veterans who successfully complete the Veterans Florida Startup Program are eligible to enter this business pitch competition where they compete for startup seed funding.

To learn more about how Florida Atlantic is committed to providing scholarships that propel access to higher education, as well as how Transcend Tomorrow: The Campaign for Florida Atlantic University is working to protect our environment and address the growing need to train more health care workers, visit

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