Growing up in a small town, Bryan set his sights on the U.S. Army after high school. He served a year-long deployment as a sniper in Tikrit, Iraq, during which, in October 2004, he was shot in the left leg and left hand during an ambush, and as a result, earning a Purple Heart. Upon his return home, Bryan struggled to reintegrate back into society and was eventually diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Feeling isolated and alone as a Rutgers University student, Bryan had difficulty transitioning into the academic world. After getting involved in a student veterans organization on campus, Bryan found his calling. He devoted his service to his fellow veteran students, being elected president of the organization, and focused their efforts on making the university a better place for returning veteran students by advocating substantially for comprehensive transition programs and increased faculty and administrative awareness of PTSD.
Eventually, Bryan’s advocacy work transitioned to a national level through his involvement with the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, particularly with a starring role in the award-winning “Alone” commercial. Upon graduation, Bryan hopes to continue his advocacy for veterans, while using his knowledge and experiences to make a positive impact for all returning veterans.