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Miami University Student Veterans

Lucas Arnold at graduation

Over the last year, journalism students at Miami University have been interviewing a misunderstood population at their school - student veterans.  As returning soldiers transition back into civilian life with few options in the ever-shrinking job market, going back to school has become a growing national trend across the country.  As the first class attending college on the 9/11 GI Bill graduates this month, student producers set out to capture the more personal and intimate human stories they felt were missing from   coverage on war and veterans’ issues.

The result is a 20-minute composite portrait exploring the highly personal and intimate stories of dramatically diverse student veterans who served during conflict and are now in the role of “untraditional” students at a highly competitive mid-western university known for it’s classic liberal arts college experience. 


Lucas Arnold is a single 31-year old student who graduated this May with a degree in Supply Chain and Operations Management from Miami University/Oxford campus. He served in the Marines as an Aviation Life Support Systems Technician from 2000-2005; and signed up for the NAVY Reserve in 2008.  In 2009 he was reactivated for a year and sent to Kuwait.

Jonathon Boehle is 22-years old and grew up in Fairfield, Ohio. He is currently enlisted as a United States Army Calvary Scout and is part-time student at Miami University/Hamilton campus when he is not on active duty.

Rob Gouhin is 21-years-old and calls Columbus, Ohio home. He served in the United States Air Force Reserves from 2003-2007, and is currently enrolled at Miami University/Oxford campus. He is studying Supply Chain and Operations Management.

Jonathon Boehle

Rob Gouhin

Victoria Hackel is a 29-year-old single mother with one son. She served as Marine E4 Corporal from 2003-2007. She is currently a full-time student at Miami University/Oxford campus, and is majoring in International Studies. She plans to be a Japanese Interpreter when she graduates in 2014-2015.

Duncan Rogers is 26-years-old and grew up in Fairfield, Ohio.  He was a former United States Marine Corps SAW Gunner and recently graduated with degree in Secondary Education in Social Studies.

Duncan Rogers


Courtney Bernard is pursuing a strategic communication and journalism double major with a French minor.  She grew up in Carmel, Indiana, but has lived in Cincinnati for the past seven years. She plans to pursue a career in broadcasting when she graduates and developed a deep passion for long-form storytelling while producing this project.

Jessica LaSorsa graduated this May with a degree in Journalism and Mass Communications. She is currently working in New York City and hopes to eventually use her journalism skills to tell stories rarely seen in the mainstream media.

Kelsie Walker is Journalism and Interactive Media Studies double major. She is from Hamilton, Ohio and has a strong commitment to tell stories about her local community. She has interned for the local news station where she developed a strong interest and proficiency in editing, and plans to use her advanced technical skills to produce innovative stories about the place she calls home.

Primary editing by Kelsie Walker.

Primary writing by Courtney Bernard.

Professor and Advisor: Kathy Conkwright/Miami University Department of Media, Journalism and Film and a documentary filmmaker.