Florida State College at Jacksonville to Host Wounded Warrior Day

Jan 21, 2010, 15:40 ET from Wounded Warrior Project

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Florida State College at Jacksonville's North Campus will roll out the welcome mat on January 26 for wounded warriors currently enrolled in the Wounded Warrior Project's (WWP) TRACK program as part of the first "Wounded Warrior Day."  This event strengthens the partnership between WWP and Florida State College at Jacksonville, whose Deerwood Center has long been an academic partner of the TRACK program, helping to ensure warrior's academic success.  

TRACK is the first education center in the nation created to address the unique educational needs of wounded warriors. For one year, students live in Jacksonville to jumpstart their educational goals while building career skills and preparing for an independent life with courses that focus on mind, body and spirit.  Students enter as a team and continue through the program together, offering the ideal environment for students of all ability levels. Current students range in age from 23 to 41 and represent 15 states and Puerto Rico.

In keeping with the program's goal of offering TRACK students a complete mind, body and spirit rehabilitation, various programs at Florida State College at Jacksonville's North Campus will provide special services to the wounded warriors on January 26.  All 28 warrior students will receive a full dental exam, cleaning, and x-rays free of charge courtesy of the Dental Hygiene Program as well as gift bags containing donated oral hygiene products.

"We initially wanted to ensure they had easy access to essential dental care," said Dr. Jeffrey Smith, instructional program manager of the College's Dental Hygiene program. "We arranged to bring the warriors in for cleanings but felt we could do more, so we decided to donate other services that would enhance the holistic 'mind, body, spirit' focus of the project and established 'Wounded Warrior Day'," explained Smith.

TRACK students will also enjoy a lunch prepared by Chef Bill McCool of the College's School of Culinary Arts; massages provided by students in the Massage Therapy program and haircuts donated by Cosmetology students.  "It will bring a positive experience for the warriors and give our students a way to show their appreciation and give back to these heroes," said Smith.

To continue to provide the warriors with excellent dental healthcare, Dr. Peggy Lessig, president of the Northeast District Dental Association, has also responded to Florida State College at Jacksonville's efforts by encouraging local area dentists to adopt warriors and provide them with free follow-up dental care.  Many dentists have already responded to her call.  

"I have been so impressed with the outpouring of support Dr. Smith has managed to bring together," said Chris Rick, dean of students at TRACK.  "We at WWP are always trying to serve the warrior, to raise awareness and enlist the public's aid for the needs of severely injured service men and women.  But to see the community step up with this level of support is truly remarkable."  

About Wounded Warrior Project

The mission of the Wounded Warrior Project is to honor and empower wounded warriors.  Its purpose is to raise awareness and to enlist the public's aid for the needs of severely injured service members, to help severely injured men and women aid and assist each other, and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs. WWP is a national, apolitical organization headquartered in Jacksonville, FL. To get involved and learn more, visit www.woundedwarriorproject.org.

SOURCE Wounded Warrior Project