JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

Mayor Alvin Brown on Tuesday presented a group of 10 military veterans, each now enrolled at Jacksonville University, with a check for $3,500 to finance a trip to the annual Student Veterans of America national conference in Orlando in January.

"I'm proud to support these brave men and women as they transition to civilian life and embark on a new mission to better themselves through academics," Brown said. "More than a donation, this is about our city's future. It's about refining leadership skills and grooming potential into reality. It's a symbolic gesture for a city where generous people will always come together to help the military and veterans community."

The money was raised through private donations. Jacksonville University President Kerry Romesburg and Don Capener, dean of the Davis College of Business, accompanied the students to City Hall on Tuesday to accept the gift.

"Jacksonville University is very grateful to Mayor Brown for graciously recognizing and honoring the contributions and the potential of our student veterans," Romesburg said. "The national conference will provide invaluable resources, support and advocacy to help all of our student veterans - many of whom are going through multiple life transitions -- succeed in higher education and after graduation."

The 10 student veterans recognized Tuesday are Darrell Smith, U.S. Navy; Carey Alton, U.S. Navy; Eric Daniels, U.S. Army; Ted Chancellor, U.S Navy; Danielle D'Amato, U.S. Navy; Lissette Matos-Minehart, U.S. Army; Joel Schell, U.S. Navy; Elton Snowden, U.S. Marine Corps; Nevardo Cayemitte, U.S. Army; and Marshall Cusick, U.S. Army.