Taja Glasco struggled to find her footing when she enrolled at UNC Pembroke following her career as a pharmacy specialist in the Army.
“The military can be a great career, but it is hard to remember how to be a civilian again,” she said.
Glasco didn’t take long to find her way after becoming acclimated with the Academic and Military Outreach Office and the resources it offers student veterans. Glasco eventually stepped into a leadership role and began lending a hand to other veterans at UNCP.
Glasco developed into a model student, serving as the 2020-2021 Student Veterans of America chapter president and establishing a SALUTE Veterans National Honor Society chapter. As a Department of Veterans Affairs work-study student, she assisted veterans and family members with navigating the steps to apply for and utilize their VA education benefits.
A nursing major, she volunteered to work with the UNCP Mobile Vaccine Clinic to increase the availability of the COVID-19 vaccine to the surrounding community and led outreach activities designed to help serve the military.
Glasco earned national attention as the recipient of the 2021 GI Jobs Student Veteran Leadership Award for her efforts. The award recognizes student veterans who are making a positive impact on their school and fellow veterans. She is currently featured in the August edition of GI Jobs magazine, a national publication.
“I’m humbled to have been chosen for this award,” she said. “It’s always a blessing to be recognized. I put my heart into everything I do. I have a heart for people and want to be of service to others.”
Jasmine Coleman, assistant director for Academic and Military Outreach, nominated her for the award.
“In a tumultuous year of unprecedented hardships, Taja remained steadfast in her commitment to serving the campus community,” Coleman said in her letter.
“Her commitment to her studies only matches her dedication to helping others. While finishing her final academic year, Taja homeschooled three children while completing the rigorous coursework to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Her selfless service and diligence are a testament to student-veteran success in higher education.”
Glasco earned her nursing degree in May and is currently pursuing a position in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Cape Fear Valley Health.