New student organization supports female veterans


The TCU Veterans Plaza is a space honoring student and alumni veterans on campus. (Lance Sanders/ Staff Writer)

By Lance Sanders , Staff Writer

There are currently 211 veterans that are enrolled at TCU.

Of those veterans, 163 are male and 48 are female. Holly McLaughlin, a junior communications studies major, is one of those 48 women.

McLaughlin is the founder of Women are Veterans 2, a club started in 2022 that is designed for female veterans at TCU. “I wanted to provide a unique college experience for female veterans,” said McLaughlin. “Our goal is to help women veterans help women veterans.”

Source: Council on Foreign Relations via Office of the Undersecretary of Defense

In 2022 there were an estimated 1.3 million service members on active duty. Women made up 35% of that 1.3 million, according to a study conducted in 2020 by the Council on Foreign Relations.

Women are Veterans 2 is more than a club for women veterans. “It’s about providing a space for women to connect and share their experiences with each other as they navigate through college life,” McLaughlin said. “We have different experiences compared to other women attending TCU; we’re older and have already experienced so much from our time in service.”

McLaughlin served four years in the U.S. Navy as an information systems technician. After leaving active duty in 2017, she worked different jobs including working on cell phone towers before coming to TCU.

“For me, I kept trying to find a mission and it kept misfiring,” McLaughlin said. “I kept getting burnt out.”

When she toured TCU, she noticed there was a lack of representation for the women veterans on campus. From that moment, she said she was motivated to start her own student organization.

Women veterans in focus infograph shows a deeper view of the demographics of women veterans. (via U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs)

“I wasn’t interested in the same things traditional students were interested in,” she said. “I wanted to see the stadium and the veteran center.”

According to the U.S. department of Veterans Affairs, more than 2 million women veterans currently live in America. Women veterans are the fastest growing group in the veteran population.

Women are Veterans 2 is a growing organization. Meetings are the last Friday of each month in Jarvis Hall room 228.