New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
DMAVA Highlights 31 January 2008

Volume 7, Number 5


Contacting us is easy!

Public Affairs Office

Phone: (609) 530-7088
Fax: (609) 530-6963



Veterans' Organizations Contact Information

State Veterans Service Council
Mr. Richard Clark
RJClark21@msn.com

NJ Advisory Committee for Women Veterans
Mrs. Anna Hoffman
hoffmanannem@aol.com

BG Willam C. Doyle Cemetery Advisory Council
Mr. William Rakestraw
warjrnj@msn.com



Veterans Hotlines

Benefits & Entitlements
1-888-8NJ-VETS
(1-888-865-8387)

Mental Health
1-866-VETS-NJ4
(1-866-838-7654)



DMAVA Highlights Archive

DMAVA Highlights Archive Page



NJ World War II Memorial

For information or to make a donation, call 609-530-7049

WWII Memorial on the web



New Jersey Freedom Loans

What is a Freedom Loan?
* Up to $10,000
* Annual APR 6%
* Term: 5 years (no pre-payment penalty)
* Unsecured Loan (no collateral required)

Who is eligible to apply?
NJ residents who are:
* Members of the National Guard or Reserve
* Mobilized for one year or longer to fight in the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) - excluding routine training.

Or

* Served 90 or more consecutive days in the GWOT on federal or state active duty (excluding routing training) and have received orders extending cumulative active duty a year or longer.

How do I apply?
* Contact participating banks. Call or visit your local branch office to obtain an application.
* Guardmembers, Reservists, or family members with Power of Attorney must submit copies of current mobilization orders with the bank's Freedom Loan application.

Current participants:
Commerce Bank
1-888-751-9000

Credit Union of NJ
609-538-4061, ext. 401

First Morris Bank & Trust
1-888-530-2265

Manasquan Savings Bank
732-223-4450

North Jersey Federal Credit Union
1-888-78NJFCU

Peapack-Gladstone Bank (908)
719-BANK

Pennsville National Bank
856-678-6006

PNC
1-866-PNC-4USA

Sovereign Bank
1-877-391-6365

Sun National Bank
1-800-691-7701


Quote for the Week

Necessity never made a good bargain.

- Benjamin Franklin

Man is what he believes.

- Anton Pavlovich Chekhov

He who reflects too much will accomplish little

- Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller

A wise man knows everything; a shrewd one, everybody.

- Anonymous


Download PDF Version of this week's highlights

News For Your Views

NJANG enlisted award winners announced

From the desk of Command Chief Master Sgt. Ed Karol, New Jersey Air National Guard

I am very proud to announce the 2007 NJANG enlisted award winners. The selection criteria were based on leadership and job performance in primary duties, significant self-improvement, and base or community involvement. The following individuals were selected after a stringent board process:

v    General Richard Cosgrave Chiefs' Award: Chief Master Sgt. Don Martenz, 177th Fighter Wing

New Jersey's nomination for the U.S. Air Force 12 Outstanding Airmen Awards:

v    First Sergeant of the Year: Master Sgt. Dan Mitchell Jr., 177th Fighter Wing

v    Senior NCO category: Master Sgt. Thomas Capito, 177th Fighter Wing

v    NCO category: Tech. Sgt. Frank Spence, 177th Fighter Wing

v    Airman category: Senior Airman Walter Kienzle IV, 177th Fighter Wing

Congratulations to these truly outstanding Airmen!

Army Guard members train Albanians

Three members of the New Jersey Army National Guard went to Tirana, Albania to train Albania officials on emergency management operations and to evaluate the needs of the Albanian Regional Protection Brigade.

Col. Dennis Devery, Sgt. Maj. Lisa Homan and Staff Sgt. Pamela Smejkal provided briefings and guidance to the commander and staff of the Albania Regional Protection Brigade. The briefings focused on the structure, procedures and coordination of effective emergency management operations using the U.S. National Response Plan and the New Jersey Emergency Management Plan as the model.

The New Jersey National Guard is partnered with the country of Albania through the National Guard Bureau State Partnership Program. The program was established in 1993 to assist emerging democracies of eastern Europe to develop governmental systems which support democratic principles, market economies and humanitarian assistance.

Rep from N.J. Deferred Compensation Program available for consults

A representative from the New Jersey Deferred Compensation Program, Mike McConnell of Prudential Financial, will be at DMAVA Central Office on Feb. 14, from 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m. in Conference Room A, to discuss individual employee's State Differed Compensation Program.

We are scheduling 30 minute one-on-one consultations with Mike starting at 9:30 a.m. until noon and then from 12:30-3 p.m. at 30 minute intervals. Please contact Paul Serdiuk at 609-530-6878, to reserve a time slot.

 

FRG meeting at Dover armory, Feb. 9

A Family Readiness Group meeting will take place on Saturday, Feb. 9 at 2 p.m. at the Dover armory. Local residents interested in supporting members of their community who are mobilizing are welcome to attend. A representative from the State Family Readiness Council will make a presentation; information will be available for those interested in supporting National Guard Soldiers and their families. For more information please contact 1st Lt. Jarrett L. Feldman at 732-974-4873.

Recently, a Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of NJ employee's laptop was stolen that contained personal information, including the name, address and social security number of some of their members. Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of NJ does not believe any medical data was on the computer.

Several security measures are naturally set in place to safeguard data and prevent its access should this rare situation occur. However, since the privacy and security of some members' personal information may be at risk, Horizon BCBSNJ is notifying each impacted member or dependent directly by letter of this incident.  Again, this breach has not affected everyone who is a member.

If you do not wish to wait, you may call them at 1-800-447-3798 to confirm if you are affected. When calling, please have your insurance card available and be prepared to provide your ID number. If you have any further questions, please contact your Benefits Administrator or Horizon BCBSNJ directly.

SHBP Health Fair, Feb. 8

There will be a SHBP Health Fair for state employees on Friday, Feb. 8, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. at Thomas Edison State College - Prudence Hall, 101 West State Street, Trenton.

NOTE: DMAVA will be offering on-site sessions in the future.  Please be watch for future dates.

Education news for NJARNG

Education Services Brochure Booklet (ESB2)

Access the New Jersey Army National Guard's ESB2 at www.nj.gov/military/education. The ESB2 is a comprehensive guide with links and shortcuts to civilian education benefits available to New Jersey Army National Guard Soldiers.

G.I. Bill Notice of Basic Eligibility

New Jersey Army National Guard Soldiers can print their Eligibility of Mobilized Soldier notification letter for CH 1607 as well as Notice Of Basic Eligibility for CH 1606 at https://www.nationalguardbenefits.com; click on G.I. Bill Home Page.

Battlemind supports Soldiers, families through deployment cycle

Battlemind is a term used to describe combat readiness. The first Battlemind product was a mental health post-deployment briefing. It quickly became a training system supporting Soldiers and families across the seven phases of the deployment cycle.  The Battlemind system includes separate pre-deployment training modules for Soldiers, unit leaders, health-care providers and spouses. Psychological debriefings are given in theater and upon redeployment. There is also a post-deployment module for spouses and several post-deployment modules for Soldiers.  Pre-deployment Battlemind tells Soldiers what they are likely to see, to hear, to think and to feel while deployed - by describing the worst-case scenario.  Post-deployment Battlemind addresses safety concerns, relationship issues, normalized combat-related mental health reactions and symptoms -- along with teaching Soldiers when they should seek mental health support for themselves or for their buddies. All of the Battlemind products (training modules, brochures, debriefings and videos are available on the Web site, www.battlemind.org.

For Your Calendar

Fundraiser being held for scholarship to honor late NJ Guardsman

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

Sgt. Anthony D. LaSelva from New Jersey's Co D/250th BSB was among the 4,000 troops from the Minnesota National Guard's 1-34th Infantry Division who left Camp Shelby, Miss., on March 16, 2006 to deploy to Iraq.  His unit was scheduled to stay a year.  LaSelva was one of the New Jersey soldiers ordered in January 2007 to remain in the Iraq for an additional 125 days. The 21-year-old New Jersey Army National Guard sergeant survived 15 months in Iraq only to perish less than three months after returning home.  LaSelva was killed in a motorcycle accident on Sept. 13, 2007. 

As a tribute to Sgt. LaSelva for not only serving our country, but also for touching the lives of so many with his passion and kindness, his friends and family have decided  to organize a fundraiser in his honor.  All of the proceeds will be donated to Washington Township High School to form a scholarship in his name: The Sgt. Anthony D. LaSelva Memorial Fund.  Anything that anyone can do to help with the fundraiser would be greatly appreciated.  There will be a Chinese Auction at the event so they are in need of things to fill the baskets, whether it is a gift certificate or merchandise.  All donations are tax deductible.  Any questions or concerns, contact Malorie Mullen at 856-364-5646.  The event will be held on Saturday, Feb. 23, 6-10 p.m. at the Senior Citizens Center, 315 Greentree Road, Turnersville NJ 08012. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door.

Pancake breakfast slated for April 13

The National Guard State Family Readiness Council, American Legion post 414 and the Lawrence Township Lions Club are proudly sponsoring a "Support the Troops Pancake Breakfast" with all proceeds going to support the Soldiers and families of the New Jersey National Guard State Family Readiness Council. For tickets or additional information, please call 609-771-4143, 609-882-2675 or 609-989-9162.

 

Date:  Sunday, April 13, 2008
Time:  7 a.m.-1 p.m.
Place:  National Guard Armory

           151 Eggert Crossing Road
           Lawrenceville, NJ
Price:  $7 for adults and $5 for children under 10 years old.
Note:  Tax-free donations can be sent to:
           National Guard State Family Readiness Council
           PO Box 5692
           Trenton, NJ 08638-0692

Military Training, Schools, Opportunities

RTS-Maintenance offers training to Army Guard members

The Regional Training Site-Maintenance provides maintenance and logistics education under The Total Army School System. The RTSM is a subordinate unit to the 254th Regiment RTI. It utilizes automated and current force modernization equipment systems to support Active, Reserve and National Guard soldiers. As a fully accredited schoolhouse it offers military occupational skill classification, additional skill identifiers, sustainment and transition training. Its charge is to provide instruction to non-commissioned officers under the non-commissioned officer education system. The mission supports the enabling of Armed Forces Components to mobilize for wartime mission requirements. The overall unit mission helps to support the "Warrior" during the current operational environment and undertake critical missions to win the fight.

Schoolhouse: Regional Training Site-Maintenance

Location of training: Building 3601, Technology Drive, Fort Dix, N.J.

School Code: 967

Unit Phone: 609-562-0566/0568

RTSM (NJ) Team Home Site: https://www.us.army.mil/suite/page/468201 (Army Knowledge Online (AKO) password required)

 

v    ULLS-G - 1 week - 40 hour course:

The Unit Level Logistics System-Ground (ULLS-G) course helps units track scheduled and completed services. The ULLS-G program can give you a service schedule by vehicle, list equipment capabilities, create work orders and forecast maintenance services. ULLS-G is the commander's tool for maintenance management.

 

v    091-ASIH8 (63B) Wheeled - 2 weeks - 80 hour course:

The course helps students to safely and correctly use/operate wheeled vehicle recovery systems and equipment. Instruction on specialized rigging and recovery wheeled vehicle techniques is given throughout the course. Students conduct towing and winching of wheel vehicles to include self-recovery. A mini-field training exercise is part of the course. Note: E5s and below receive an Additional Skill Identifier (ASI) of H8. E6 and above receive a Certificate of Training and cannot be awarded the H8 ASI. The student must possess a current Civilian and Military Driver's License.

 

v    131-F13 Small Group Instructor Course - 1 week - 40 hour course:

This course is for personnel assigned as instructors or to improve instructional techniques. The one week intense course focuses on learning the basic techniques of monitoring, questioning and facilitating small group discussions in a military setting. Emphasis is placed on presenting issues and finding solutions using the small class setting. The students will learn effective use of written, verbal and management techniques to improve public speaking and presentation skills.

254th Regiment announces upcoming courses

Here are the 254th Regiment courses that are on the calendar. When using ATRRS, the school code is 1004.

Inactive Duty Training (IDT) Courses:

The Army Instructor Training Course, (TAITC)

April 5-June 7, 2008 - 12 openings

Basic NCO Course, (BNCOC)

April 5-Sept. 7, 2008 - 48 openings

Officer Candidate School (OCS)

begins March 1, 2008

Active Duty Training (ADT) Courses:

68W Combat Medic Training Course Sustainment

Feb. 4-13, 2008 - 32 openings

***NEW ON ATRRS, Combat Lifesaver Course (CLC-06)

Feb. 5-7, 2008

Feb. 11-13, 2008

Feb. 19-21, 2008

13D10 MOS-T FA Tactical Data System Specialist

March 15-29, 2008 - 12 openings

13F10 MOS-T Fire Support Specialist

March 15-22, 2008 - 18 openings

31B10 MOS-T Military Police

March 8-22, 2008 - 20 openings

88M10 MOS-T Motor Transport Operator

March 15-29, 2008 - 16 openings

Company Level Command Team Course (for new Commanders & their 1SGs)

April 12-13, 2008 - 60 openings

11B10 MOS-T Infantryman

May 3-17, 2008 - 34 openings

11B40 Infantryman ANCOC

June 7-21, 2008 - 31 openings

If you have any questions, contact Master Sgt. Gary Davidson, 732-974-5912 or gary.davidson@nj.ngb.army.mil.

Honorable Mention

Space A rules have changed

Dependents of service members who have been deployed for 120 days or longer will now find it easier to travel on Space Available military flights (Space-A). Due to a change in policy effective Dec. 6, 2007, military families no longer need to be accompanied by their service member when traveling Space-A regardless of where they are based. Prior to the change, military dependents could only travel unaccompanied from an overseas location to the family's home of record within the continental United States or within an overseas theater of operation. Additionally, they were limited to one round trip during the military sponsor's deployment period.  Under the new policy, family members may now travel unlimited times during the deployment when seats are available. However, family members planning to use Space-A transportation will need a verification letter from the military sponsor's commander confirming the service member's deployment. In addition, an eligible parent or legal guardian must accompany family members under age 18.  For more information regarding the Space-A travel program, please visit the Air Mobility Command website at www.amc.af.mil/.

State Health Benefits Program has new plans

The New Jersey State Health Benefits Program will provide active and retired members with new medical plans effective April 1, 2008.

The SHBP is offering two types of medical plans, a Preferred Provider Organization and Health Maintenance Organizations. Several options are available under each plan. Information can be found at the following web site about the plans, co-pays, costs, and directories: www.state.nj.us/treasury/pensions/shbp.htm. You can also contact your benefits counselor at DMAVA HRD - Lisa Dandrea, 609-530-6888 or e-mail lisa.dandrea@njdmava.state.nj.us.

Better Business Bureau partners with Air Force

The Air Force began an official partnership with the Council of Better Business Bureaus (BBB) recently. The partnership encourages Airmen and their families to use the bureau's free programs, services and materials.

The BBB Air Force Line website aimed specifically at its Air Force audience. The site includes BBB products and services such as reliability reports on businesses and charities, consumer tips and alerts, and a link to file complaints. The site also includes news items of particular interest to military consumers. Through the website, Airmen may sign up for a monthly newsletter that contains a regular "scam alert" feature. Visit http://www.bbb.org/airforce for more information.

Affordable TRICARE benefit for drilling National Guard members

The John Warner National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007 (P.L. 109-364), enhanced the TRICARE Reserve Select (TRS) health plan. Under this new TRS health plan, effective Oct. 1, 2007, certain members of the Selected Reserve may qualify for health care coverage under TRS at $81 for single coverage and $253 for family coverage. Selected Reserve members who are enrolled or eligible to enroll in a health benefit plan under chapter 89 of title 5 U.S.C. Federal Employees Health Benefit Program (FEHBP), IRR and ING Soldiers are excluded from purchasing TRS.

Soldiers currently enrolled in the three tier TRS program must have transitioned to the new program by Sept. 30, 2007. For more information or to enroll contact your state representative listed on www.tricare.mil/mybenefit, select the "benefits update" link for the Tricare Reserve Select information page.

N.J. licenses, registration extended for deployed troops

New Jerseyans who are active duty military, including the National Guard and military reserves, serving in the war on terrorism, are eligible for automatic extensions of a valid driver license, registration or inspection expiration dates. Go to www.nj.gov/mvc/ for more information.

Discounts offered for State employees

Are you a state employee looking to save a few $$$?

Visit www.state.nj.us/personnel/discounts/index.htm and you can find a number of businesses who offer discounts to New Jersey state employees. From amusement parks to fitness to computer to phones and lots of other discounts between, you will find many ways to save money. For more information, please contact Cindy Leese at cindy.leese@njdmava.state.nj.us or call 609-530-7056.

For the Families

Journal available for military children

Health Net Federal Services released My Life, a Kid's Journal, designed for military children whose parent or loved one is deployed. The journal is meant to serve as a keepsake for the child or as a gift to their special person who is deployed once it's completed. To obtain copies for military children living in the TRICARE North Region, e-mail your request to mailto:HNFS_Communications@healthnet.com. Those living outside the North Region can download the journal from the Health Net Federal Services website.

Picatinny Arsenal Egg Hunt, March 8

The Picatinny Arsenal invites all National Guard families along with the Picatinny community to the Annual Egg Hunt held on March 8, 1:30-3 p.m. at the Teen Center. Come out for an afternoon of fun and laughter. There will be games, prizes, egg hunt, arts and crafts and pictures with the Easter Bunny.

The day is for children 11 and under. Attendees are asked to bring their own basket. To reserve your spot, please call 973-724-5555/7183.

The Teen Center is located in building 3228, next to the community center. The egg hunt starts at 1:30 sharp; hunters are asked to arrive early.

Spouses eligible for H&R Block course

Military spouses are eligible to receive a full scholarship for an H&R Block Income Tax course. The program does not require any previous training and it is open to active duty and reserve military spouses. For complete details and program information, contact your local H&R Block office at 1-888-412-7880 or www.hrblock.com/taxes/planning/tax_courses/index.html

Family deployment briefs scheduled

From the desk of Amanda Balas, New Jersey National Guard Youth Coordinator

The following is the Family Deployment Briefing Schedule presented by the Family Programs Office at various armories throughout New Jersey. Any family member that is interested in learning more about important information, who to contact and ways to cope through this upcoming deployment are welcomed to attend ANY of the briefs, no matter where the Soldier's home station is located, as all the information will be the same at every brief. Children, ages three and up, are welcome to attend too! For more information, please contact your local Family Assistance Center by calling 1-888-859-0352.

 

DATE ARMORY START TIME

Feb. 4 Toms River 6:30 p.m.

Feb. 9 Westfield 9:30 a.m.

Feb. 23 Port Murray 9:30 a.m.

Feb. 24 West Orange 1:30 p.m.

March 1 Lawrenceville 1:30 p.m.

March 2 Morristown 1:30 p.m.

March 8 Riverdale 9:30 a.m.

March 9 Woodbridge 1:30 p.m.

March 15 Jersey City 9:30 a.m.

March 20 Teaneck 6:30 p.m.

April 3 Cherry Hill 6:30 p.m.

May 4 Woodbury 9:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Order a complimentary Blue Star Flag to show your family's service

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

The Blue Star Flag first appeared in 1917, when Capt. Robert L. Queissner, who had two sons serving on the front line, designed it as a tribute to their dedication and service.  He proudly displayed this flag in the front window of his home and the flag quickly became the unofficial symbol of a child in the service.  Also known as a Service Flag, the blue star stands for hope and pride.  Order a complimentary Blue Star Flag to honor your loved ones in the service by visiting: www.grantham.edu/promo/freebluestar.php.

Family Assistance Center Realignment

Co B/250th Brigade Support Battalion (BSB) (Bordentown) is now serviced by the Lawrenceville FAC at (609) 671-6681
Co D/250th BSB is now serviced by the Jersey City FAC at (201) 915-3589
Co E/250th BSB (Vineland) is now serviced by the Woodbury FAC  (856) 251-6893
Troop C/5-117 Reconnaissance Surveillance Target Acquisition (RSTA) is now serviced by the Woodbury FAC at (856) 251-6893

The Pomona Family Assistance Center will continue to have responsibility for the families from units assigned to the following armories: Atlantic City, Cape May Court House, Hammonton and Tuckerton.

Reserve Aid gives support to families of deployed service members

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

Reserve Aid is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to providing financial support to the families of Reserve Service Members called to active duty in all five branches of the Armed Forces. Reserve Aid makes unrestricted, need based grants to military families who have a Reserve service member on full-time deployment to a combat zone or homeland security position. Their goal is to alleviate the emotional and financial burdens placed on the men and women called to serve our country by supporting their families at home.  For additional information and application procedures go to: www.reserveaid.org

GI Mail Offers Safer Way to Stay in Touch

Global Internet Mail is a personal e-mail program available to all servicemembers that can be used from any computer with Internet access, including government systems. GI mail is also available to spouses who are registered in the Defense Eligibility Enrollment Reporting System.  While official government e-mail accounts are the most secure form of e-mail communication, messages sent between GI Mail accounts are more secure than those sent between public e-mail accounts.  For more information about GI Mail and how to get an account, visit www.gimail.af.mil/, or read the Air Force Print News story at www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123075003

2-1-1 - new statewide number for assistance

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance Specialist

Need help?  Dial 2-1-1:   You can find everything from basic needs like food, housing and healthcare to legal services, drug treatment, job assistance, childcare, mental health services, transportation, financial assistance, municipal programs and much more.  The 2-1-1service is a new statewide number for New Jersey residents. It connects people with the resources they need to solve problems.  It is free and confidential.

MyArmyBenefits Website - the single source for all Army Benefits

MyArmyBenefits at http://myarmybenefits.us.army.mil is the official Army benefits resource for active-duty, Guard and reserve Soldiers, family members and retirees. Active-duty Soldiers with AKO accounts can access personalized reports on the survivor, disability, and retirement benefits through MyArmyBenefits.

Army Information Line: 1-800-833-6622

The Army Information Line (1-800-833-6622) is designed to help all Soldiers and their Family members whether they are deployed; stationed stateside or overseas; are brand new to the Army; or are 30 year veterans.

In addition to The Army Information Line, Army Well-Being's Army Families Online Web site www.ArmyFamiliesOnline.org recently welcomed its 2-millionth visitor this year.

The Army Information Line also celebrates its 25-year existence of providing information and referral services to those Soldiers and Family members.

Support for military children of deployed and injured Guard members

From the desk of retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, Family Assistance specialist

Our Military Kids (OMK) provides tangible support to the children of deployed and severely injured National Guard and Military Reserve personnel through grants for enrichment activities and tutoring that nurture and sustain the children during the time a parent is away in service to our country. OMK grants are made to honor the sacrifices military parents make and to ensure that the children have access to activities and support that help the children better cope with challenges arising during a parent's deployment or injury recovery. For additional information go to www.ourmilitarykids.org

N.J. State Family Readiness Council offers Family Grants Program

The New Jersey National Guard State Family Readiness Council has expanded its Family Grants Program to include an additional grant.  There are now two levels of Family Grants; TIER I is the $2,500 grant that has been in place for the past couple of years.  The TIER II opens family grants to New Jersey Army and Air National Guard non-deployed service members who were on State Active Duty or State Missions (e.g., hurricanes, floods, border missions) for more than 20 consecutive days.  Service members meeting these criteria are eligible to apply for a financial hardship grant up to $1,500.  Applications are available at all New Jersey Army and Air National Guard Family Assistance Centers.

Program offers grant funds to spouses of deployed military

The Deployed Military Spouses Assistance Program provides direct assistance and referrals to existing programs for spouses of deployed military personnel (active duty, reserve and National Guard) who face unusual financial and emotional stress as a result of the deployments. 

Applicants should contact Fawn Mutschler at 609-543-6200 ext. 325 or wocmilitarygrant@ymca-bc.org to obtain an application.  In addition to the completed application form, applicants will also need to submit the following documentation: LES/paystub for applicant and spouse; statement of Financial Need (i.e. reason for applying and how the grant will help); bill or pricing of expenditure as well as any other supporting information the applicant feels may be helpful. Additional information can be found at: www.state.nj.us/dca/dow/depmilspouseasst.shtml

Harlem Globetrotters: Magic as Ever 2008 World Tour

Saturday, Feb. 16 at 1 p.m. & 7 p.m.

Monday, Feb. 18 at 1 p.m. (Presidents' Day) Izod Center (at Meadowlands)

Tickets Prices: $37, $24; Special Military Price: $15

The world famous Harlem Globetrotters return to the Izod Center with an exciting new show of basketball tricks, hilarious comedy and fun for the entire family. Groups receive a special invitation to Globetrotter University - a youth-oriented, character education/physical fitness program presented by Harlem Globetrotter players. In addition, there will be a brief team history, a skills demonstration, and question and answer session. If you have any questions, please call 201-460-4370.

Travel Help, Ideas

McGuire ITT office has discounted tickets to Six Flags

The ITT Office at McGuire Air Force Base currently has 2008 Season passes to Six Flags Great Adventure for a discounted price.  For additional information contact the ITT Office at the BX/PX Mall at McGuire at 609-754-6032/-3737 or e-mail ittoffice@verizon.net.

     3-Park Pass - $115.00 (no tax) (Good at Six Flags Great Adventure, Hurricane Harbor & Wild Safari)

     2-Park Pass - $83.00 (no tax) (Good at Six Flags Great Adventure, & Wild Safari)
     *Ages 4 an older are the same price*

Come purchase your season pass before prices go up. The prices remain at the lowest price until Feb. 29, 2008.

Armed Forces Vacation Club offers affordable lodging

The Armed Forces Vacation Club is a "space available" program offering Department of Defense affiliated personnel affordable condominium vacations at over 3,500 resorts around the world. Visit www.afvclub.com/ for more information.

Shades of Green offers Disney for military

Now that the summer is almost over, thoughts of how to spend next summer or your next vacation week, can start to pop into your mind. "Can we go someplace better or different, nearer or farther from home, all without breaking the bank?"

One place to consider if Florida is one of your next vacation places is Shades of Green in Orlando. Minutes from the Disney attractions, this resort is also close to golf, dining and other Florida attractions.

Their web site, www.shadesofgreen.org can give you tours of their rooms and family suites, the local attractions and other amenities that are offered by the resort. The rates are reasonable and will be an opportunity to visit Orlando with your family.

Scholarship, Education News

Scholarships for military spouses now available

The National Military Family Association's Joanne Holbrook Patton Military Spouse Scholarships are awarded to spouses of uniformed services members (active duty, National Guard and Reserve, retirees and survivors) to obtain professional certification or to attend post secondary or graduate school. Scholarships range in amount from $500-1,000, and the number awarded each year varies depending on funding. Scholarship funds may be used for tuition, fees and school room and board. 

Scholarship selection is based on completion of some survey questions that will help NMFA advocate for education changes on your behalf, short-answer questions and an essay question that will help us get to know you better. To be considered, applications must be completed by midnight March 15. To apply, go to:  Click here.

Scholarships available for military children

Two scholarships are available for military dependents: Scholarship for Military Children Program and Army Emergency Relief Scholarship Program.

To be eligible for either scholarship, the applicants must be under 23 years old, unmarried, enrolled in DEERS and must be enrolled or planning to enroll in a full-time undergraduate program at an accredited college or university in the fall of 2008.

Details for the Scholarship for Military Children can be found at www.military scholar.org. The deadline for this scholarship is Feb. 20.

The AER Scholarship deadline is March 1. Details about this scholarship can be found at www.aerhq.org.

Commissary agency offers scholarships for 2008

The Defense Commissary Agency's 2008 Scholarships for Military Children are now available in commissaries worldwide. The $1,500 scholarships are for children of active-duty and retired military, as well as children of Guard and reserve servicemembers. Applicants must be must plan to attend an accredited college or university full time in the fall of 2008. The deadline is Feb. 20. At least one scholarship will be awarded at every commissary location with qualified candidates. Applications and further eligibility requirements are available in commissaries and online at www.commissaries.com or at www.military scholar.org.

American Legion offers scholarships, booklet on their Web site

The American Legion has scholarship information on their Web site - www.legion.org - including the 152-page booklet, Need a Lift, which is a complete financial aid reference guide for veterans, family members and the American Legion family. When you get on the site, click on "Scholarship Information" in the "Useful Links" block.

Association News

Enlisted Association wants YOU!

By retired Command Sgt. Maj. Mike Hughes, EANG-NJ

The Enlisted Association National Guard-New Jersey is off to a good start for 2008 as we have realigned all the committees and filled both the Executive Council and Committees with a cross section of Army and Air, uniformed and retirees, and several junior NCOs. Everyone appears to be enthused and pledges to support the Association in all its efforts. All we need now is for you to get on board as a member and bring your fellow soldiers and airmen with you.

We have many challenges facing us over the next few years whether it is another round of base closures via the Base Realignment Commission (BRAC), reduction in TRICARE benefits, reduction in troop strength, attempts to maintain the retirement age at 60, etc. We need a powerful voice to put our message across to the State and Federal Legislators and this can only be accomplished through a strong membership in our State Association (EANG-NJ) and the National Association (EANGUS).

The new membership year starts on 1 January 2008 and we need your help in making our Association grow. We encourage all enlisted soldiers and airmen to join the Association as Active Members and also welcome all officers, warrant officers, federal, and state employees to join as Associate Members. Applications for membership can be obtained from our website www.eang-nj.org.

NGANJ group life insurance available to members

Are you covered by the NGANJ Group Life Insurance Program? As a member of either the Officers or the Enlisted Association, you are entitled to enroll in your Association Life Insurance Program. This special program provides from $5,000 to $50,000 of Life Insurance for you, "round the clock". Premiums range from as little as $2 per month and may be payroll-deducted from your drill check. Family coverage is also available at low rates designed for you as a member of the New Jersey Army and Air National Guard. Think of it!! No aviation exclusions...No hazardous duty restrictions...No war clauses.No checks to write. Dependent coverage includes spouses and all children. Information can be obtained by contacting retired CWO Jack Petrosilli at 609-530-6843, or retired Brig. Gen. Robert S. Dutko Sr. at 609-273-1004. Enrollment forms can be obtained by calling retired Col. Frank L. Carlone, Program Coordinator at 732-249-8335.

Veterans Information

Web site provides support to separating military members

TurboTAP (Transition Assistance Program) is an easy to use, interactive Web portal that provides life-long support to separating military service members (Active Duty, Guard and Reserve) and their families. It is a single source starting point for accessing key resources available for servicemembers transitioning out of the military at any point in their military career. Resources include Department of Defense, Department of Labor, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Education, Small Business Administration, the National Veterans Corporation and the National Guard Bureau.  For more information go to www.TurboTAP.org or email TAPHelp@military-inc.com.

N.J. Militia Museum conducting Retiree Oral History Program

The National Guard Militia Museum of New Jersey has put together a National Guard Veteran Retiree Oral History Program.  In the past, the NJNG has not conducted oral exit interviews of commanders, full-time personnel, and retirees to preserve history.  The museum is going to institute a volunteer program to try to catch up. If you wish to participate, contact the museum at 732-974-5966

Helmets to Hardhats

The New Jersey State Building and Construction Trades Council's Helmets to Hardhats Program (NJ H2H) is designed to help transitioning military personnel, National Guardsmen and Reservists find the careers in the building and construction industry. The program seeks to help military members find a career in one of 15 affiliated trades, such as electrical workers, carpenters and painters.

They work in cooperation with the national Helmets to Hardhats program, adding a personal component to the program's on-line services. NJ H2H offers veterans preparation for successful application to any of New Jersey's registered apprenticeship programs in the building and construction trades. Services include career counseling, entrance test preparation and referral to supportive services.

For program registration and information, visit online at www.njbctc.org/h2h or contact at 732-499-7295 or at H2H@njbctc.org.

Vet Career Connect helps military members find jobs

Vet Career Connect is a program designed to connect military service members with New Jersey employers. Vet Career Connect matches veteran's specific abilities, drives and interests with jobs requiring those specific abilities.

Participants complete a Caliper Profile, which is an on-line self assessment. They will receive an Individual Developmental Guide outlining personal motivators and areas of developmental opportunity. Participants will then have the opportunity to place the results of the Caliper Profile, their resume and military achievements onto a database which will be viewed by New Jersey-based companies who have indicated a strong interest in employing veterans.

Vet Career Connect program is available at no cost to service members. In order to participate in this program, or if you have additional questions please email or call Barbara Foos, Project Administrator, at 609-524-1228 or bfoos@calipercorp.com.

DMAVA Veterans Outreach Campaign continues

The DMVA Veterans Outreach Campaign continues with kiosk displays at selected malls throughout New Jersey. The schedule is as follows:

 

February 5, 6, 7

Moorestown Mall

March 3*, 4, 5

Paramus Park Shopping Center

April 1*, 2, 3

Voorhees Town Center

May 6*, 7, 8

Ocean County Mall

July 8, 9, 10

Cherry Hill Mall

*Medal ceremonies begin at 10:30 a.m. on these dates. The kiosk will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The kiosk will also be in place at the Wildwood Convention Center for three state conventions.

v    June 5-6, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. - Elks State Convention

v    June 11-13, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. - American Legion State Convention

v    June 18-20, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. - VFW State Convention

N.J. Vietnam Veterans Memorial

N.J. Vietnam Veterans' Memorial and Vietnam Era Educational Center's upcoming events:

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Free guided tours of the Memorial are offered on the first Saturday of each month at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Feb. 2, 1 p.m. - In the Navy in Vietnam, an oral history presentation by N.J. Vietnam Veteran and Monmouth University President, ret. Vice Adm. Paul G. Gaffney II, U.S. Navy.

Mar. 1, 1 p.m. - American Vietnam Veterans Who Wouldn't Come Home, an oral-history discussion about American ex-patriots recently encountered on a trip to Thailand by Steve Lonegan, Mayor of Bogota, N.J.

Apr. 12, 1 p.m. - We Were There: Voices of African American Veterans, from World War II to the War in Iraq, a book discussion by the author, Yvonne Latty.

May 7, 11 a.m. - New Jersey Vietnam Veterans' Remembrance Day Ceremony at the Memorial. There will be a state medal ceremony.

May 17, 1 p.m. - On the Road to Recovery, an oral-history discussion by NJ Vietnam-Era veteran Bishop Fred Rubin about his service tending wounded G.I.s in the Army hospital in Hawaii during the Vietnam War.

May 26, 11 a.m. - Memorial Day Ceremony at the N.J. Vietnam Veterans' Memorial.

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For further information call 1-800-648-VETS or visit www.njvvmf.org.

 

   
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