Detroit Mercy honors student veterans

November 11, 2022

Student veterans at each of University of Detroit Mercy’s campuses have bravely served and defended our country in many different branches of the military. In recognition of Veteran's Day, Detroit Mercy is proud to highlight several student veterans.

Jeffrey Brooks ’19 One person stands and poses for a photo while while a U.S. Navy uniform

The Detroit native served five years in the U.S. Navy as an Electronics Technician, reaching the rank of Petty Officer 2nd Class at the Naval Station in Norfolk, Va. His most memorable moment while serving was receiving his Submarine Warfare Insignia, also known widely as “dolphins.” In order to earn the right to wear the pin, prospective submariners must complete an extensive qualification process that lasts one year and covers virtually all of the submarine’s systems. 

Today, Brooks is back as a student veteran studying Chemistry.

“My experience at Detroit Mercy has been wonderful," he said.“The administration, faculty, and fellow students have always been very receptive and appreciative of vets.”

Daniel BernhardThree people sit on top of an armored vehicle while posing for a photo outdoors.

Originally from Houston, Bernhard served for seven years on active duty in the U.S. Army as an Armor Officer. Bernhard was stationed in Kuwait, Egypt, Fort Benning, Ga., and at Fort Hood and Fort Bliss, both being posts located in Texas. While finishing his final year on active duty, he had the opportunity to command during Operation Allies Welcome (OAW). The emergent mission aimed to support Afghan allies as they came into the U.S. by processing their immigration visas. 

“It was humbling to help those that have very little and to work as a team to assist them. It has had a massive impact on my life and has become a major reason why I want to pursue immigration and human rights law.” 

Today, Bernhard continues to serve in the U.S. Army Reserve as a Civil Affairs Officer while he pursues a Juris Doctor degree at Detroit Mercy’s School of Law. Bernhard credits his time in the service for providing him with the discipline needed to successfully navigate the challenges of law school.

“(Being a student veteran) has been very rewarding. I am using this time as an opportunity to transition into a new career, and I appreciate doing it at this stage of my life," Bernhard said. "Detroit Mercy School of Law also has several opportunities to continue serving my community, including Veterans Law clinic which assist veterans with their VA claims.”