(Photo by Tom Strattman)

Students pass resolutions, graduate

On the final day of American Legion College, each of the five groups completed several assignments focused on proposing and defending a resolution. National Commander Daniel M. Dellinger presided over the meeting by calling on all students to simultaneously vote on whether they were in favor of passing the resolution.

Out of the five proposed resolutions, three passed and two were tabled. The resolutions that passed include:

  • Adding a date of birth to the membership application form
  • Studying the feasibility of raising the National Emergency Fund disaster relief amounts to meet cost-of-living adjustments; the amount given to recipients hasn’t increased in 24 years.
  • Establishing an Emergency Medical Technician/Paramedic of the Year Award within the Department of Virginia.

The two resolutions that were tabled for further discussion include:

  • Allowing deaf or hearing impaired youth to participate in the Legion’s Oratorical Contest with the use of a certified American Sign Language Interpreter.
  • Creating a national database that identifies all service officers, not just American Legion accredited ones, and disseminating service officer information from National Headquarters down to the post-level (non-accredited) service officers. Currently, all information goes only to accredited Legion service officers.

On Friday, The American Legion National College program graduated its 2013 class of 56 Legionnaires representing 34 departments. The students received their Legion College diploma, lapel pin and coin, and had their photo taken with National Commander Dellinger in the National Executive Committee room on the fourth floor of National Headquarters in Indianapolis.

Dellinger imparted a few words to the graduates.

"I want to thank you for taking a week out of your life to come and be a part of this," he said. "It is something very special that will serve you through the years as you continue with your American Legion career. And the other part of that is, it is going to serve our organization because what you learned here this week and what you’re going to take back and share, will help perpetuate our great organization through our 100th anniversary and beyond.

"My motto for the year is ‘Building for Tomorrow Today,’ and we need to start, we need to continue because the veterans are depending on us, our communities and our nation. We are the fabric of America."