Good Morning, Veterans!
Eric Dehm ’15, named one of HillVets 100 of 2017, is connecting veterans across the globe
After 13 years in the Navy and four years at the Lawrence Herbert School of Communication, former Mass Communications Specialist 1st Class Eric Dehm ’15 has plenty to talk about.
A Radio Production and Studies graduate and self-described “grizzled old veteran,” Dehm spends his days hosting Connecting Vets’ daily morning show, Morning Briefing. A news program broadcast out of Washington, D.C., Briefing provides updates from Capitol Hill through its local affiliate, WJFK-AM, and worldwide stream on ConnectingVets.com.
“The show includes an interview with one of the major Veteran Service Organizations like the VFW, American Legion, etc.,” Dehm, 38, said. “Every day we also have a featured interview with an amazing array of guests. Recent highlights include Senator Joni Ernst, UFC fighter/Green Beret Tim Kennedy, and former Army Ranger and NFL player Nate Boyer — just to name a few.”
It’s Dehm’s continued stellar work to promote the veteran experience that has earned him a place as one of HillVets 100 of 2017. A nonprofit organization focused on empowerment through networking, community involvement and education, HillVets recognized Dehm for enlightening the public on veterans’ issues and increasing their understanding of the sacrifices made by those who chose to serve. Something he’s done since his early days in the Navy.
Originally from Stamford, CT, Dehm joined the Navy after graduating high school — traveling the world as a military journalist while serving aboard the USS Saipan and USS Frank Cable, and deploying to locations including Iceland, Italy, Greece, Guam and Afghanistan
But once Dehm left the service, he was faced with entirely new mission.
“After leaving the Navy I fell in love with a girl from Long Island,” Dehm said “As we planned our future, including me moving out to the Island, I began looking into where I might continue my college education. I believed then that Hofstra was the right decision. Years later I can now say without a doubt that it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”
Dehm joined the college’s award-winning radio station, WRHU 88.7 FM. He hosted a morning program, did minor league baseball play-by-play and served as the station’s program director.
“The best thing I can say about my experience as a student veteran at Hofstra is that I wasn’t treated differently from the other students,” Dehm said. “All I wanted, and I think most vets would say the same, is to be judged on what I did in class, not what we did in our previous lives. That being said, as a college student in my thirties with a spouse and young child, the school and professors were always understanding and fair about the instances where my duties as dad and husband superseded my duties as a student.”
There is no shortage of names on Dehm’s list of those Herbert School professors and administrators who left a lasting impact. Dehm singled out professors Dennis Quinn and Mario Murillo for their invaluable guidance, as well as WRHU’s leadership staff, Bruce Avery and John Mullen.
Dehm also recalled the days he first arrived at Hofstra. Meeting new faces and personalities, he immediately noticed those classmates that he predicted were primed for success.
“Years later, I can tell you I was right on all of them,” Dehm said. “There were different reasons for why, but they all had a couple things in common: They were on time for class every day, they paid attention, and they asked questions. Do those three things in class, and in life, and you’re headed in the right direction.
“Hofstra’s communications students have an opportunity to learn from professors who have accomplished amazing things and have an incredible depth of knowledge and experience. If you can’t be bothered to show up to hear what they say, or if you’re staring at your phone instead of taking in their wisdom? Good luck. You’re gonna need it.”
“My time at Hofstra may be over, but I continue to learn from the amazing men and women associated with the school, and I don’t see that ending anytime soon, if ever.”
Hofstra University, named a 2017 Military Friendly School, is committed to providing an environment that supports veterans from application to graduation to career, helping servicemen and women pursue their academic and personal goals while becoming vital members of the campus community.