For the fifth time in six years, Eastern Kentucky University ranks third or higher nationally among four-year schools in the Military Times “Best for Vets” rankings.
EKU finished third nationally (and tops in Kentucky) in the 2016 rankings, announced this week, behind only the University of Nebraska at Omaha and the University of South Florida. The rankings measure schools on their commitment to helping military veterans further their education. EKU ranked No. 1 in 2011 and 2013 and No. 2 in 2012 and 2015.
The rankings are determined by a survey of more than 120 questions as well as data from the Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Defense and three Department of Education databases for information ranging from veteran-related policies to average salaries after graduation.
To see the full list of four-year schools, visit bestforvets.militarytimes.com/2016/colleges/4-year.
Military Times quoted EKU veteran and former Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Morgan Tipton in its release.
Tipton said she hadn’t even considered seeking out the University’s Office of Military and Veterans Affairs. “They looked for me,” she noted. “And I think that says something.”
EKU officials helped Tipton determine the credits due her through her military and educational experience, and it made a big difference.
“I came into this school thinking I was going to be a freshman and with all my military credits and everything, I’m now classified as a junior,” she told Military Times. “I was completely surprised.”
EKU has earned national recognition from several other sources in recent years for the services it provides U.S. military veterans and their dependents.
Home to more than 1,500 military-affiliated students and their dependents, EKU also has been recognized by Victory Media/G.I. Jobs magazine as a Military Friendly School each of the past six years. U.S. Veterans magazine has also ranked EKU among 145 Top Veteran-Friendly Schools.
In 2010, Eastern launched Operation Veteran Success, a series of initiatives designed to make the university even more veteran-helpful. The initiatives include:
· No admission fees for undergraduate veterans.
· In-state tuition for all out-of-state veterans nationwide.
· Maximum credit hours for military experience.
· Priority registration.
· Book vouchers and Books for Boots Exchange Library.
· Veterans Bridge to College Success cohort classes.
· Veterans orientation course.
· Veteran-helpful withdrawal and readmission policy.
· Vet-2-Vet sponsorship program and active Vets Club.
· Recreational and other extracurricular activities.
· Specially designated housing for student veterans. EKU partnered with Kentucky River Foothills, a local non-profit organization, to obtain federal funding to help veterans in transition find and maintain suitable housing. Since the grant’s implementation, the funds have helped more than 100 student veterans.
· Veteran Studies minor, believed to be the nation’s first, to help those who haven’t served in the military to better understand the issues that veterans face, and to help the veterans themselves deal with those issues.
For more information about services available at EKU for veterans and their dependents, contact the EKU Office of Military and Veterans Affairs at 859-622-2345 or EKUVeteransAffairs@eku.edu or visit va.eku.edu.