Student engagement at MFRI

MFRI’s internship opportunities offer Purdue University students the chance to earn course credits, build their resumes and enhance their knowledge. Interns and student workers participate on all MFRI teams as they learn about military members, veterans and their families. MFRI is proud to work in collaboration with Purdue departments to educate future leaders.

MFRI’s Focus Forward Fellowship serves women student veterans

MFRI’s 2018 Focus Forward Fellowship designed to build skills, leadership and a sense of community among women student veterans, will take place at Purdue University. The Fellowship takes place July 25–28, with Fellows traveling home on July 29th.

In 2017 two cohorts totaling 28 participants completed the Fellowship. One national cohort was open to women student veterans across the country, while a Colorado University-specific cohort took place in Fort Collins, Colorado. The 2017 program focused on refining the learning objectives from the 2016 pilot year. These objectives include building a community support network with peers in the Fellowship program, increased network-building, recognition and application of personal strengths and the integration of their veteran identity with other identities in their personal life.

Collectively among all the cohorts, the program has influences 41 women representing all five branches of service, 35 higher education institutions and 21 states. The fellows have an average GPA of 3.39 with the 2017 cohort being 19% STEM focused.

A 2017 Fellow said, “When this opportunity was presented, I felt like it was fate. Who better to progress women veterans than fellow women veterans?”

The 2018 Fellowship applications open in February.

Student opportunities grow experience, knowledge

Are you thinking about a unique, challenging internship experience that offers an array of hands-on opportunities, college credit and a rewarding experience? MFRI is accepting interns for the upcoming spring semester within the External Relations, Family Support and Research teams. Internships are open to qualified Purdue students, especially those who are interested in serving military-connected families.

Students majoring in communication, human development and family studies and hospitality and tourism management majors are strongly encouraged to apply. An internship in External Relations internship provides a part-time, for-credit opportunity for undergraduate or graduate students in the Brian Lamb School of Communication, offering tailored communication experiences. Students will gain experience on social media and video production, web and print content creation, event management and copyediting. It is an excellent stepping stone for those seeking a career in public relations, event management, marketing or communications. For more information, contact Linda Hughes-Kirchubel.

If you’re seeking research-focused experience, consider applying for an internship assisting with the Family Journeys Study through HDFS 390/590. This course provides an opportunity for students to code tasks performed by the family members during interviews. Email Keisha Bailey or Christine McCall for more information.

The Family Support Team will be offering one full-time, 12-credit undergraduate internship through the Human Development and Family Studies program. The intern in this position will work with the Measuring Communities project and help collect important data to distribute to communities. While this internship is already filled for the spring semester, contact Kathy Broniarczyk for more information if interested in this opportunity for future semesters.

Deadline extended for Focus Forward Fellowship

Military-connected women will travel to Indianapolis from throughout the nation to take part in the Focus Forward Fellowship program, a new initiative designed by the Military Family Research Institute at Purdue University to serve rising military-connected sophomores and juniors who are enrolled in four-year colleges and universities.

The deadline to apply for this program has been extended until Friday, June 24 at noon.

The program will be held Aug. 11-14 with an in-person workshop, followed by additional web-based activities scheduled throughout the 2016-2017 academic year.

During the free, weekend-long program, fellows will work together to increase personal effectiveness, building a potentially transformative community experience. The goal is for lessons learned with hands on training to translate to fellows’ home campuses and continue to impact them throughout their academic and professional careers.

“Eighty-two percent of post-9/11 female veterans joined the military to receive education benefits,” said Lauren Runco, MFRI’s director of education and employment. “We are committed to helping them build existing skills and transition to the next phase of their lives. I am so excited to see what our Fellows accomplish!”

Sponsorship opportunities for this fellowship are also available. To learn more, contact Jennifer Shirley at For more information about the program, contact Runco at or call 765-496-3403. Connect with MFRI on Twitter at @MFRIPurdue and use #FWDFellows to join the conversation.