A Place of Gathering

Ferguson Social Sciences Building

Three departments reside in the Ferguson Social Sciences Building: history, sociology and criminal justice, and political science. In addition, the Joe B. Hinton Office of International Studies is located in room 220, and provides information, assistance and scholarships for our international studies programs.

by Kim Williams

The Ferguson Social Sciences building has a recent addition, a veteran’s lounge for A&M-Commerce veteran students, alumni and their dependents to gather and support each other in their academic endeavors.

The lounge provides a quiet place for veterans to study, take breaks between classes, hold student veterans association meetings, support group meetings and mentor one another.

Sergeant Samantha Lamping (U.S. Army, retired) knows firsthand how the lounge can help veterans transition back into civilian society and pursue college and career goals.

“I served in the United States Army for 10 years specializing in human resources. During a one-year deployment to Afghanistan, I decided it was time to focus more on my family,” Samantha said. “After deployment, I discharged from the service, and moved to Texas.

My entire tenure, with the exception of my deployment and training assignments, was spent at Fort Carson, Colo. Moving to Texas in order to put down new roots was an emotional challenge but one that has been rewarding. Adjusting to civilian life was difficult at first, but I have since adapted and am comfortable now in my new lifestyle.

I enrolled in the Texas A&M University-Commerce bachelor’s degree program for human resource management. I chose A&M-Commerce because of the location and the transferability of my previously attained college credits. It is also a small campus and easy to navigate.

The Veteran’s Affairs office at Texas A&M University-Commerce was extremely helpful in making me feel at home from the moment I contacted them while in Afghanistan in 2010, to the moment I stepped foot on campus for orientation seven months later. I was impressed with the Veteran’s Vigil that is held every year on Veterans Day, and was proud to participate in that event this past November.

Throughout the three semesters I’ve been at A&M-Commerce, everyone has been helpful, and I appreciate the information they provide and the central location to answer questions that a veteran would have. Not only do they provide answers to benefit questions; they are also helpful when I need information about other departments on campus.

I appreciate the veteran’s lounge because it’s where veteran students can network with other veterans and have an area to study and hang out while on campus. I will use this room extensively during my career as a student.”

“The Veteran’s Affairs office at Texas A&M University-Commerce was extremely helpful in making me feel at home.” — Samantha Lamping, Sgt. U.S. Army

“The veteran’s lounge offers material to educate students about various benefits provided by the VA as well as the services located across campus that they may not be aware of. Our main goal is to provide an environment for veterans and their dependents that nurtures their success and provides them with a support group of their peers.” — Jessica Gossett, Veterans & Military Services Specialist