Written by The Chicago Defender
Meosha Thomas, an Englewood native and the Veterans Services Specialist for Kennedy-King College, one of the City Colleges of Chicago, received the State of Illinois' “Veteran of the Month” recognition for January 2013. The Illinois Veteran of the Month award honors the work of military veterans whose contributions are above and beyond the call of duty as volunteers at local, state, and national levels and in support of fellow veterans and the U.S. military.
“Meosha Thomas has shown incredible courage and bravery in service to her country and now serves our city with professionalism and dignity,” said Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “On behalf of all Chicagoans I congratulate her on this truly deserved recognition.”
As Veterans Services Specialist at Kennedy-King College, Thomas helps provide the guidance and support veterans need as students, graduates and job-seekers.
In November 2012, Emanuel and City Colleges of Chicago Chancellor Cheryl Hyman launched City Colleges’ Service to Success initiative, which involved: the creation of a veterans center at each college staffed by a full-time veterans specialist, and the launch of programs providing scholarship assistance and awarding of academic credits for prior military service to student veterans. Thomas is the full-time Veterans Services Specialist managing KKC’s new Veterans Center that works to ensure veterans receive the academic support they need to land jobs and start careers, and the support they need to successfully transition back to civilian life.
“We congratulate Meosha Thomas on this well-deserved recognition of her contributions and advocacy on behalf of her fellow military veterans,” said Hyman. “Meosha exemplifies the type of above-and-beyond commitment City Colleges of Chicago is making to serve and support our entire student veteran population.”
Thomas, a single mother of two children, served 10 years of active duty as an Information Systems Technician in the United States Navy in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. The May 2012 KKC graduate was honorably discharged from the military because of injuries she sustained in 2006. She returned home to Chicago and began teaching through the State of Illinois’ Troops to Teachers Program.
She has a bachelor’s degree and in working on her master’s in Public Adminstration.
“Being recognized as Illinois’ Veteran of the Month is a great honor,” said Thomas. “I hope this will bring more attention to the wide range of services available to military veterans at Kennedy-King College and throughout City Colleges of Chicago.”