During some periods in history, college campuses have been far from welcoming places for those in the military or those who had served. That stupid, unpatriotic attitude prevails even today at a few institutions of higher learning.
Not in our area. Every college and university in the Northern Panhandle and East Ohio has special programs to honor veterans and, often, to help them get back into civilian life.
A Tennessee university has outdone many in higher education, however. It is awarding honorary degrees to World War II veterans who were part of massive training exercises on the campus and in surrounding counties during the 1940s.
Among those presented with honorary master of military arts degrees from Cumberland University was a local man. Lou Beltrame, of Brooke County, recently received the honor by mail (he was unable to attend a recent event in which many veterans were recognized in person).
CU presented the degrees in recognition of "rigorous studies of military operations during Army maneuvers." Many of those who trained in Tennessee - in exercises that, by themselves, took scores of lives - went on to combat during World War II.
Good for Cumberland University! And good for local institutions of higher learning that honor both veterans and those serving on active duty in the nation's armed forces.