Fresno State celebrated the second annual Women’s Military Luncheon at the Vintage Room on Thursday, March 21, bringing together veteran students, staff and faculty to celebrate women in the military.
The luncheon serves to honor veteran women on campus by bringing together veterans, active service, reserved and national guard, along with community members in celebration of Women’s Military History Week.
Robyn Gutierrez, coordinator of the Veterans Service Program, planned the event, along with members of the Fresno State Student Veteran Organization, in an effort to bring awareness to the veteran student population on campus.
“We want to bring awareness to them this week especially and celebrate all of their accomplishments that they had, not only while in service, but also in their civilian life,” Gutierrez said.
The theme of the luncheon was the 1940s, and some event goers even dressed in period-accurate attire. There was a raffle for the women to participate in and even university mascot Victor E. Bulldog was in attendance to take pictures with the eventgoers.
Also in attendance were Laura Yager, the university registrar and director of veteran services, along with Frank Llamas, vice president of student affairs, and Fresno State first lady Mary Castro.
Gutierrez introduced Llamas to the women in attendance, who spoke about his support for them and congratulated them on all their accomplishments. Llamas also said that the Students Veterans Organization will get a new office in the upcoming months.
Castro also spoke to the women in attendance and said that her grandmother was a veteran. She encouraged the women in the room to share their service stories with the new generation of women.
“It’s important for us to recognize that we have strong women veterans here on our campus that are willing to serve our country and also willing to better their education, and we are proud to have them here at Fresno State,” Castro said.
Katherine Frazier, a Fresno State student veteran, said that the events helps to bring women veterans on campus together to share their stories.
“We are few and far between, and that is one of the reasons why I enjoy coming to these events,” Frazier said. “Without this type of event, I probably wouldn’t get to meet all these people.”