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Freedom Center at Henry Hall Dedicated at Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony

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The Freedom Center at Henry Hall will be more than a place U.S. veterans can live; it will be a place where learning and new beginnings will unfold.

That was the message on Jan. 29, 2014, as the community gathered together for the re-dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony renovated Henry Hall, which will now house veterans as they earn their Hiram College education.

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Jason Dominguez, left, and Hiram DeJesus, right

Hiram College recently partnered with Patriot Development, LLC, to establish the Freedom Center at Henry Hall. Renovations included the conversion of 44 double occupancy rooms into single private quarters for veterans attending Hiram under the post-9/11 GI Bill. As part of the launch of the initiative, the first 20 veterans to sign up for the program will receive free housing for the fist two months of their time at Hiram.

Several officials from across the state of Ohio gave remarks at Wednesday’s dedication, including state auditor Dave Yost; Amber Moore, of Sen. Sherrod Brown’s office; Eli Faes, legislative and public affairs director of the Ohio Board of Regents; and Jason Dominguez, assistant director and chief of staff of the Ohio Department of Veterans Services.

Yost applauded veterans for their service, honor and selflessness. He acknowledged that the greater population will never fully understand what it’s like to come back after service, but initiatives like the Freedom Center are one way to help them begin their lives again.

“The great thing about this hall is not just the leg up on university life that it gives our veterans,” he said. “It’s the fact that it gives them a place where their culture, their shared experiences – their fears, their injuries, their hopes – that all those things make sense to each other. It’s a place where they’ll be able to help each other with their studies, a place where they’ll be able to feel like they fit in.”

Ohio has the sixth largest veteran population in the country, and Hiram College is the first college in the Midwest to offer dedicated housing to veterans as they earn their degrees.

“Our goal is to provide the best environment for the successful transition from the military back into civilian life,” said Hiram DeJesus, President of Patriot Development. “What Hiram offers returning veterans is a beautiful setting just 40 minutes away from the vibrant metropolitan areas of Cleveland, Akron-Canton and Youngstown-Warren. This allows for the readjustment that experts consider crucial to bringing out the best of our country’s valuable human assets.”

For more information, call 440-785-3234 or email at hiram@patriotdevelopmentgroup.com.

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5 Comments

  1. Kaylyn Gamertsfelder BassFebruary 5, 2014 at 7:28 amReply

    I think this is a wonderful idea, and a great new way for veterans to reintegrate into civilian life. I would love to know some more details about it, though! Could we see some pictures of the renovations? What do the rooms look like? In the post where the partnership was announced, it said that veterans and their families could live there- is that accurate? Who would that include? What are the monthly housing rates, or is there a set fee for the year? Are there kitchen facilities in the dorms, or do veterans also have to purchase a meal plan? Information like this would be very helpful for veterans looking into Hiram, because they are given a very specific stipend for housing allowances. My husband is thinking about attending Hiram when he gets out of the Marine Corps in just under 2 years, and we would love to know more!

    • Christina RussFebruary 5, 2014 at 9:42 amReplyAuthor

      Hi Kaylyn,

      You can contact our partners, the Patriot Development Group, for more details: Call 440-785-3234 or email at hdj@higg.com. Sorry it was not included in this post – we will add it in now. They can tell you more about future plans as well. Thank you!

  2. PatriotDevGroup (@PatriotDevGroup)February 12, 2014 at 4:32 pmReply

    Hi Kaylyn,

    My name is Robert Szucs and I am Director of Operations for Patriot Development Group. Before and after pictures of our housing facility can be found on our website: http://www.patriotdevelopmentgroup.com.Feel free to send me an email and I can give you additional information regarding our current and upcoming programs. You can reach me at: rszucs@patriotdevelopmentgroup.com. Thanks for the inquiry and we thank your husband for his service.

  3. Hiram DeJesusFebruary 12, 2014 at 8:49 pmReply

    Hi to All,
    I’m leaving a quick correction to the story above…the correct e-mail address for me is hdj@hiqg.com or please visit the Patriot Development Group at our website http://www.patriotdevelopmentgroup.com. I have a corresponding e-mail address there as well.

    The phone number to reach me is correct and thanks again to all faculty & staff at Hiram College and to the men & women serving our country in our military.

    God Bless,
    Hiram DeJesus
    Managing Partner
    Patriot Development Group, LLC

  4. Paul WhitacreFebruary 27, 2014 at 12:41 pmReply

    Congratulations to Hiram College and the Patriot Development Group for this significant achievement! As an alum and US Navy veteran, I am most happy to see such an important initiative happen on campus and hope this can be a role model for other institutions to support the needs and aspirations of our deserving veterans.

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