Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Happy Veteran's Day!

Tomorrow the nation celebrates Veterans Day, and at Florida State University, the EBV program is celebrating as well! With the offices already gearing up to begin planning for the 2011 EBV class, we are taking a moment to honor those who have served.

Our Veterans Day festivities will begin on Thursday at the Tallahassee Veterans Day Parade. This year’s parade promises to be one of the biggest ever with over 3,000 participants already registered! If you are in Tallahassee, please come out to show your support for our veterans! The parade begins at the intersection of Monroe and Call Streets at 10:30 a.m.

On Friday, we will be hosted by Westminster Oaks as they throw a benefit concert for the FSU EBV program. Our visiting veterans and the EBV staff will be attending the concert and the proceeds will be donated to our program!

Saturday night, our visiting veterans will take center field at the FSU vs. Clemson football game as they serve as honorary captains and flip the coin. The game will be broadcast on ABC at 8:00 p.m., please tune in and see if you can spot our veterans!!

The rest of November promises to be just as busy as we begin to prepare for our 2011 EBV class! Joining Dr. Blass this year is our new Managing Director, Ashley Edwards, and our work study student, Kelly Montoya. You’ll be hearing from them as we proceed with FSU EBV 2011.

As always, please continue to check our social sites and our website to see the latest updates and pictures from all of our events, and if you are interested in making a donation to the FSU EBV program, please click here:

We want to express a heartfelt thanks to our nation’s veterans and those currently serving. You all make the ultimate sacrifice for us, and there are no words to properly thank you. We are so proud to be able to work with so many of you through EBV and can’t wait to start our 4th year!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Graduation Ceremony and Moving Forward

Last night marked the graduation for our veterans. The ceremony was a beautiful finish to such an amazing week for both veterans and volunteers alike. We made sure to catch almost every detail on video so that everyone can see and re-live the wonderful event time and again. We even got coverage from the local ABC station:

We began with a lovely serenade of "Amazing Grace" on bagpipes, seen here:

Then, we had a special table honoring and remembering our POWs from the various branches. The symbolism and ceremony surrounding this occasion can be seen in this video:

From there, speaker Will Gunn, General Counsel of the Department of Veterans addressed the FSU EBV Graduating Class of 2010, discussing changes in the GI Bills, and his hopes for their futures.

To finish things off, Dr. Blass announced our two $500 winners, Jeff Smith and Will Shultz, our two $1000 prize winners, Marylyn Harris and Daryl Jackson, and our two $1500 prize winners, Milton Tookes and John Colley. Catch all the excitement here: and here:

Finally, here's a letter from FSU Program Director, Randy Blass, talking about this year's class and our plans for the future. Keep posted for updates about EBV 2011!

Dear Friends of FSU EBV,

We bid an often tearful farewell to 21 of our newest friends last night as the FSU EBV 2010 program came to a close. It was a joyful evening and everyone present was moved by the experience. As this newest class of fledgling entrepreneurs makes their way back home, they will face many challenges. Our program now shifts from the logistics intensive in-residence program to the mentoring phase. Over the next 12 months this class will have direct access to everything from legal counseling to corporate mentors.

We will also be encouraging our grads to enter into business plan competitions in their local areas. That being said, the EBV Foundation, a separate, non-school affiliated, non-profit, established to support the entire EBV effort, will begin offering up to $30,000 annually (exclusive to EBV graduates) business plan competition. I know quite a few of our folks from this year and years past that will compete well.

Thank-you for your continued support,