Bev Belfer is welcoming all military veterans to participate in a beginner’s guitar class held at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesdays at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM). With “guest status,” vets do not receive class credit and must be certified through the Military Education Benefits Office (MEBO), located in Mellencamp Hall, room 168A.
The class is offered through a partnership between the nonprofit organization Guitars for Vets and UWM’s Peck School of the Arts.
Veterans who attend six classes receive their own guitar, gig bag, tuner and method book from Guitars for Vets. Funds to support this effort were raised, in part, through a silent auction held at UWM in conjunction with October performances of “A Piece of My Heart.” The play explores the role of women in wartime and was presented as part of the Peck School theatre season.
Guitars for Vets Inc. (G4V) was founded in Milwaukee in 2007. According to its website, the G4V mission is to enhance “the lives of ailing and injured military veterans by providing them with guitars and music instruction. Through self-expression and the healing power of music, it is our intent to restore the feelings of joy and purpose that can be lost after suffering trauma.”
Vets do not have to experience medical or psychological problems to participate in the UWM program.