For the sixth straight year, WKU has earned national recognition in Military Times’ Best for Vets rankings.
The Best for Vets: Colleges 2016 list is the latest recognition of WKU’s service to veterans and military students. On Nov. 5, WKU was designated a Military Friendly® School for the seventh consecutive year. WKU also has been recognized by Best Colleges among the top 10 schools in the 2016 Best Colleges for Veterans and the 2016 Best Online Colleges for Veterans and by U.S. News and World Report as one of the Best Colleges for Veterans of Regional Universities in the South.
WKU serves more than 2,000 active duty military, veterans and their family members – the largest population of military students at four-year public universities in Kentucky.
WKU Military Student Services (MSS) began in 2011 with the mission to provide personalized support for all military, veterans and dependents. Earlier this year, WKU opened a Military Student Services center at the Glasgow campus.
“Student veterans are quite different than a traditional college student,” said Tonya Archey, director of Military Student Services. “Their financial path to college is unique and challenging. They are financially independent from their parents, and most have families to support. Although some receive a small VA stipend each month, it’s hardly enough to support them and their families as they attend college. Many of our National Guard and Reserve students are unemployed. Most aren’t eligible for traditional scholarships. Extra money for college can be illusive for our military students. Deployments and assigned duty cycles are an additional challenge they face. Given these obstacles it’s extremely important for WKU to create a culture that is understanding and flexible enough to meet their needs.”
WKU’s Military Student Services hosts the Textbooks For Troops program, the largest scholarship program of its type in the nation that has assisted more than 1,200 students with free textbooks/resources since 2011 to eligible military, veterans and their family members enrolled at all WKU locations, or shipped across the globe to our military students taking distance learning courses.
WKU MSS also provides other services, including support and guidance with GoArmyEd and tuition assistance requests for all branches of the military; a Veterans Resource Center, a dedicated space for military, veterans and dependents located at Tate Page Hall 410 on the Bowling Green campus. The Student Veteran Alliance, a coalition of student veterans helping each other succeed, uses the space for monthly meetings, as well.
In addition, WKU offers unique services to our military students that are not available at any other university in Kentucky: a discounted tuition rate of $250 per credit hour to all active duty, reserve, and National Guard members, the only Veterans Upward Bound program in the state, as well as the only therapy dog, CanDoo.
WKU hosts an award-winning Army ROTC program as well as an Air Force ROTC program, an Office of Veterans Affairs and programs at WKU’s Elizabethtown Fort Knox campus. For information about programs at WKU, visit www.wku.edu/military or www.wku.edu/veterans.
About the Best for Vets rankings
In their sixth year, the Best for Vets rankings factor in the results of Military Times’ annual survey, the most comprehensive school-by-school assessment of veteran and military student services and rates of academic achievement. More than 600 colleges took part in this year’s detailed survey.
“It’s been amazing to witness how colleges all across higher education have embraced service members and their families,” said Amanda Miller, editor of Military Times’ Best for Vets rankings and special editions. “Over the past six years of our surveys, we’ve seen so many schools first begin to foster – through new policies, services and dedicated facilities – and then nurture these wonderful communities.”
The Best for Vets: Colleges survey asks colleges and universities to document a tremendous array of services, special rules, accommodations and financial incentives offered to students with military ties; and to describe many aspects of veteran culture on a campus. Military Times also factors in data from the Veterans Affairs and Defense Departments, as well as three Education Department sources: the IPEDS Data Center, College Scorecard data and the Cohort Default Rate Database.
“We award the Best for Vets designation to the very best – the colleges that really are setting the example,” Miller said.
For the full Best for Vets: Colleges 2016 rankings, visit www.militarytimes.com/bestforvets-colleges2016. The rankings are published in full in the issues of Army Times, Navy Times, Air Force Times and Marine Corps Times on newsstands the week of Nov. 9; and online at MilitaryTimes.com, as well as ArmyTimes.com, NavyTimes.com, AirForceTimes.com and MarineCorpsTimes.com.
About Military Times: The Military Times digital platforms and newsweeklies are the trusted source for independent news and information for service members and their families. The military community relies on Air Force Times, Army Times, Marine Corps Times, and Navy Times for reporting on everything important to their lives, including: pay, benefits, finance, education, health care, recreational resources, retirement, promotions, product reviews, and entertainment. Military Times is published by Sightline Media Group. To learn more, visit www.militarytimes.com.
About Sightline Media Group: Sightline Media Group, formerly Gannett Government Media, was established in 1940 as Army Times Publishing Company, an independent publishing company reporting on military news and information. Since then, the company has expanded into defense and government news, and has launched or acquired more than 13 periodicals and extended its brand globally into the online and broadcasting arenas. Sightline Media Group is a subsidiary of TEGNA Inc. For more information, visit www.sightlinemediagroup.com.
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Contact: Tonya Archey or Joshua Smith, (270) 745-5837