the letters m-s-k-c with a star

Military Service Knowledge Collaborative

What is the MSKC?

Military Service Members, Veterans and their families face unique challenges and often have unique needs. Illinois researchers are motivated to understand Veterans’ challenges to help create solutions for these needs. However, researchers often struggle to recruit Veterans for studies because of not having the right tools to effectively engage with Veteran communities. Motivating Veterans to participate in research can be difficult because of their experiences with volunteer burnout, status as a vulnerable population, lack of trust in institutions, being a small community that many research groups are competing for access to, and most importantly, skepticism of ‘cultural outsiders.’ The Chez Veterans Center’s Military Service Knowledge Collaborative (MSKC) was formed to bridge the gap between the needs of Military/Veteran communities and the needs of researchers motivated to serve this community. As a catalyst to create and apply research with Military/Veteran communities, the mission of the MSKC is to foster collaboration between researchers and Military/Veteran communities. The MSKC accomplishes this mission through:

  1. Strategic Partnering between Military/Veteran organizations and researchers to facilitate access for recruitment and to ensure the needs of this community are central to project development.
  2. Community Events that create spaces for researchers and Military/Veteran stakeholders to network and engage with each other on timely topics impacting this community.
  3. Educational trainings and workshops tailored to fuse the societal military-civilian divide and help researchers develop necessary cultural competencies for effectively engaging with this community in research.

The guiding vision of the MSKC is to advance research that positively impacts well-being and quality of life during and after military service for Service Members, Veterans, and their families. Since becoming operational in August, 2018, the MSKC has established a network of 75 members, hosted 3 community events, and delivered 14 educational workshops and/or presentations (reaching approximately 600 people). The MSKC is constantly growing. Visit our Who Should Join page to become part of our network.


Illini Veterans – MSKC Student Research Award currently accepting applications until March 8th, 2020.

The 2020 MSKC Seed Grant Program is currently accepting proposals until April 17, 2020.