Central honors student veterans, long-time volunteer


Central Connecticut State University Office of Veterans Affairs hosted its annual Veterans Day commemoration and awards ceremony on Nov. 9 at Alumni Hall. Following the presentation of the Colors by the Army National Guard, three individuals received awards for public service and academic excellence.

Central student and U.S. Army Specialist Daniel Duggan of Enfield received the Student Veteran Award For Excellence and Scholarship. Duggan’s military awards include the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, and Army Service Ribbon. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Robotics and Mechatronics at Central. 

Abraham Romo Gonzalez of Middletown, another Robotics and Mechatronics at Central, received the Great Elm VFW 9945 Wethersfield Veterans Scholarship. Romo Gonzalez served in the U.S. Marines and earned the rank of sergeant. During his time in the Marines, he received several awards, including the Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Expert Rifle Qualification Badge, and the Sharpshooter Pistol Qualification Badge.

Elaine Schieffer of Prospect received the Veterans Public Service Award. Schieffer is a life-long volunteer who has received the President’s Award for Volunteerism, the Four Chaplains Memorial Foundation Legion of Honor Humanitarian Award, and the Connecticut Marine Corps League Distinguished Service Award. For many years, Schieffer also served as a Veterans Administration Voluntary Services representative. She is a past state president and past New England Division vice president of the Marine Corps League Auxiliary. Since 2016, she has served on the board of the Iwo Jima Memorial Historical Foundation.

Each award winner also received proclamations from New Britain Mayor Erin Stewart and their representatives in the Connecticut General Assembly and U.S. Senate.

“At Central we are deeply committed to helping our student veterans make the most of their education,” said Central President Zulma R. Toro. "Just as these students made it their duty to protect and defend the values of this country, we consider it ours to guide them on their academic journey. We are very proud of them, not only for their service to our country, but also for their leadership on campus and for the example they set for all students.”  

Watch the ceremony here.