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Meet the Veteran Team

Craig SmithCraig Smith

Director of Veteran Affairs

Joined Thomas Edison State University: 2013

Phone: (609) 777-5696, ext. 2193

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Degrees:
MBA, Centenary College
BS, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale

Craig R. Smith is the director of Veteran Affairs at Thomas Edison State University and is responsible for all aspects of the University's veteran programs. Craig is dedicated to ensuring the University offers the premier veteran program in the country and focuses on the ongoing development and implementation of the school's programs for veterans. 

Prior to joining the University, Craig was employed at Vineland High School as an aerospace science instructor for the Air Force JROTC program. While serving at the school, he taught 1,200 hours of leadership/life skills training; provided subject matter expertise and real-world experiences; and demonstrated good citizenship to 140 high school students. He also organized fund-raising, school and community events and motivated cadets to participate. The JROTC program raised over $5,000 to support future events and drill competitions and fostered a positive relationship with the school and local area.

Craig is a U.S. Air Force veteran who has served in a variety of roles while on active duty from 1991-2012. He directed enlisted and officer professional military education (PME) programs for Europe and Africa while serving as the International Training & Development Director for the United States Air Forces in Europe. He managed a $3 million annual budget supporting 3,000 students attending courses throughout Europe. Craig also developed & implemented policy and coordinated PME matters with senior leaders, the Air Force Personnel Center and Headquarters United States Air Force. Other key positions held during his Air Force career include program manager, maintenance team leader, leadership and management and technical training course instructor.

Craig holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Centenary College and a Bachelor of Science degree in Workforce Education and Development from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He is an avid Syracuse University football and basketball fan.

Yesu GuadarramaYesu Guadarrama

VA Certifying Official

Joined Thomas Edison State University: 2000

Phone: (609) 777-5696, ext. 2200

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Yesu Guadarrama is a VA certifying official within the Office of Veteran Affairs at Thomas Edison State University. Yesu first started working with the University's military population in 2000 as a military program coordinator and was responsible for generating contracts under the Servicemembers Opportunity College (SOC), which affords service members the opportunity to attend college while meeting the mobile demands of the military lifestyle. In 2005, he joined the Office of Military and Veteran Education and expanded his administrative roles to include support for active-duty and veteran students. As a certifying official, he is specifically responsible for assisting veterans with the VA's Vocational Rehabilitation Program. Whether it is a new student, a returning student, or a challenging issue, Yesu considers it a privilege to serve those who serve our country and it is with this vision that he continues to strive to provide the best possible service for veterans.

Steven MazzilliSteven Mazzilli

Assistant Director
VA Certifying Official

Joined Thomas Edison State University: 2000

Phone: (609) 777-5696, ext. 2199

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Degrees:
MA, Thomas Edison State University
BSBA, Thomas Edison State University

Steven F. Mazzilli is an Assistant Director of Veteran Affairs and a VA Certifying Official at Thomas Edison State University and is responsible for student program planning and VA certifications.

Steve has been with the university since September 11, 2000 and has held numerous positions to include the Student Contact Center, Academic Evaluations, Senior Learner Support Center representative, Academic Advisor and found a home in OMVE recently in 2017.

Steve received is Masters of Arts in Educational Technology in Online Learning in December of 2016 which he considers to be the 8th wonder of the world and sets the example that "anyone" can do it as long as they stay focused and keep their eye on the prize.

"I consider working in OMVE to be a privilege because it allows me to assist active duty military that have interest in finishing their degree while serving our country, and to veterans that have served. It's a way for me to show appreciation for their efforts and getting them where they need to go."

When Steve is not at work. He can be found watching/playing golf, working around the house/yard, watching his daughter play tennis and spending quality time with his family.