We have the pleasure of announcing Oscar Martinez, Lead Coordinator of Veterans SSS from the Office of Academic Engagement as a Crimson Spirit Award recipient.

 Oscar is the Coordinator Lead for Veterans SSS and Passport Program, enhancing academic engagement and success for student Veterans from limited income households, first generation backgrounds, those with disabilities, former foster youth, and unaccompanied homeless youth. Oscar, who is a Veteran himself, performs his duties effectively and professionally and is described to have “charisma, passion, and resilience” that sets him apart. When the Veterans SSS was implemented in 2020, a time where students, faculty and staff may have felt disconnected – Oscar, managed to create a space of belonging and exceed participation and objectives in the first year.

Oscar expands his impact through service by serving as cochairman on the WSU Veterans Task Force, where he advocates for enhanced polices and services for WSU‘s growing population of military-affiliated students. He has collaborated with system partners to bring Veteran students together, like the time at the 2022 Military Appreciation football game where military families gathered to show their Cougar pride.

Here are what some of the Veterans SSS participants have to say about Oscar’s support, “Vet SSS was the first group to welcome me and show me around campus. Without them, the transition I had to undergo would have been a much more difficult experience. “ Another says, “As a non-traditional, first-generation student, I have had a very difficult time fitting in with my peers, but Vet SSS has been there to assist me every step of the way… connecting me with other non-traditional students that I can rely on and build a sense of belonging and camaraderie…”

His nominator finishes by saying that Oscar, “Exemplifies what it means to be a Coug, advancing knowledge, inquiry, integrity, belonging and inclusion, as well as to meet the land grant mission of the institution.” Mr. Martinez is being recognized for his efforts in supporting university strategic goals, providing outstanding contributions to the WSU community, and expressing genuine interest in what he does.