Brent Wilkinson never thought he would go to college.
“I was never a school person – I actually hated school,” said Wilkinson.
So instead of going to college, he joined the military. Wilkinson, a Bronze Star recipient, served for 12 1/2 years before he was medically retired after receiving some injuries during a tour in Iraq.
“Honestly, I’m not really sure what I did for those first few years,” stated Wilkinson. “I was on so much pain medication and depressed. I still wanted to be in the military. I had no idea what I was going to do – I had no purpose.”
Wilkinson had received some training in welding and thought he would be able to fall back on the welding skills he had received but quickly realized he would not be able to due to his disability. Finally, Wilkinson decided to use his post-9/11 GI Bill™ benefit and go to college.
“I can’t give the staff at Drury enough kudos. The knowledge they have is incredible and they really work with you.”
After 3 1/2 years, Wilkinson received his Bachelor of Science in Psychology and Sociology. A single dad, Wilkinson has served as a role model for his twelve-year-old daughter.
“She wants to go to school now. She wants to be a veterinarian,” he said. As for Wilkinson, he hopes to start leading group counseling sessions for disabled veterans. “I want to help guys like me to try to make it easier on them. I want them to know that just because you’re disabled doesn’t mean you can’t help others or do things.”