Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan


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Supporting the Soldiers: Sarah Curtin wins Award

Elly Herrick
Smiling brightly and in uniform, second year student Rose Cases presents Sarah Curtin an award for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve on Jan. 11, 2024.

Sarah Curtin was a student at Winona State University in the 90’s and she has continued to stay at the university working in a variety of roles in the Admissions office over the last 25 years. For the past 5 years, she has become the Certifying Official and Transfer Admissions Associate Director for veterans and newly admitted students.

“I work as the liaison between the veterans on campus and the VA and help students understand benefits, stay compliant and certify their courses to receive their benefits from the VA,” Curtain said. “I enjoy the community, the people I work with and I am a huge supporter of WSU and the students on campus.”

During her time at the university, she has worked countless hours working towards supporting newly admitted students and veteran students to make sure they have all they need to be successful. On Jan. 10, she was shocked to see

an email from her employee and SPC Rose Cases (Specialist in the National Guard) telling Curtin that she nominated her for an award for her commitment to the Army and National Guard and that she was the one to win it.

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“It’s humbling to receive something like this. Hard work and support often go unnoticed; it’s something I do every day. To actually get nominated and be acknowledged for the award allowed me to realize I’m doing something right, and what can I do better.”

The award for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve is a testament to the achievement and support of those who serve in the Guard and Reserves, and it is rare for a person who hasn’t served to receive this award. Through Cases’s nomination, she expressed how the hard work that is dedicated to veterans on campus from Curtin has impacted her and many other veterans in their journey in serving the county and getting an education.

“She recognizes the effort I put into my work and the sacrifices I make to serve my country,” Cases said. “Sarah Curtin deserves this award because she is an outstanding supervisor and supporter. It felt wonderful to be able to present her with this award and acknowledge her support.”

Cases is thankful for Curtin’s support in her and countless other students in the Army and National Guard’s careers. As Curtin’s employee in the Veteran Affairs office, Cases comments that she is very thoughtful of her duties with the National Guard and makes sure her position is filled with other employees if she is away for drill so other students still have access to the office.

“The students are who drives me to do the best work I can do. This group of students are special, and I try all I can do to support them,” Curtin said. “Thank you to Rose, the VA, Jerry Obigelo, the students, student workers and my co-workers. All of you make it easier to come
to work every day and be the best version of myself in support of the soldiers on campus as well as newly admitted students.”

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About the Contributor
Elly Herrick, Online Editor
Elly Herrick (She/They) is currently the online/social media editor, business manager, features writer, and photographer. Try saying that five times fast. Herrick also works as the Communications Director on Student Senate, a 2023 Orientation Leader, and was newly added on a Tuesday 7-10p.m timeslot on KQAL. They are also the Social media manager for the WSU Pre-Athletic Training Club. Herrick is from Kenosha, Wisconsin, and is a second-year student at Winona State University studying Mass Communications: Public Relations with a minor in Advertising, Photography, and Creative Digital Media. They love following challenging and fulfilling stories. They also have a strong passion for writing and giving others a voice. Herrick loves to travel and over the summer, they traveled to Greece, Italy, and Barcelona. They are now saving up and planning on going to New Zealand this winter with their Aunt. Outside of school, they love taking the train and seeing live concerts with friends. They also love sharks and a good book!    

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