Returning to school is a major step for military Veterans who have given up an extended amount of their life as ordinary civilians to bravely protect their country. Many service members are understandably concerned about whether schools will meet their unique needs.
Military Veterans tend not to fit the profile of the average college student who hovers in age between 18 and 23.
As the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs notes, Veteran students are older than their non-military counterparts, more likely to hold an off-campus job, and tend to have a family. Plus, Veterans bring a wealth of life experiences that other students lack.
It’s common for Veterans to have reservations about their success when going back to school due to these differences. Some might wonder if their unique experiences and personal situations keep them from getting along with other students. Others could feel there are too many challenges to overcome on their path to graduation.
Fortunately, there’s a way military members can identify schools that provide a meaningful and supportive learning environment for the military community.
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What is a Military Friendly® school?
According to the Military Friendly website, a Military Friendly® school is an organization that shows “commitment, effort and success in creating sustainable and meaningful opportunity for the military community.”
The designation was created by VIQTORY, a Veteran-owned business, to help fellow service members identify schools that cater to the specific challenges they face when returning to school.
Organizations must meet certain criteria to earn recognition as a Military Friendly® school to ensure they offer the resources, support, and environment where Veterans can flourish.
What does a Military Friendly® school mean?
A school needs to meet three standards to be considered Military Friendly®:
- An organization must demonstrate an ongoing dedication to creating an environment and curriculum that benefits military Veterans specifically.
- Military Friendly® school must put forth the effort to act on those commitments by providing the necessary funds, time, and professionals to fulfill the needs of service members.
- A school must have a proven track record of success in serving military Veterans to receive this designation.
What are the benefits of choosing a Military Friendly® school?
These schools are officially recognized.
Any school can claim to serve military Veterans, but schools that have earned the Military Friendly® title put their commitment into action. You could save a considerable amount of time researching by filtering schools by their dedication to your specific needs as a military service member.
With a single standard, Veterans can quickly and accurately assess the offerings of a school before applying.
They attract many Veterans.
Studies have shown that connecting Veterans with other servicemembers can improve their chances of success when returning to school.
Military Friendly® schools tend to attract more Veterans because of the many ways these organizations cater to the needs of service members. When you go to school with students who have shared experiences, it could be easier to feel at home and comfortable.
There offer better civilian opportunities.
Military Veterans return to school to develop valuable skills, improve career prospects, and increase their quality of life.
The key is finding a school that provides an environment to support you in achieving those goals. A Military Friendly® school is recognized for providing civilian opportunities for military service members for a smoother and more successful transition back to civilian life.
Veterans are understood and respected.
Military Veterans deal with a variety of challenges that average students don’t face.
Physical disabilities, mental health conditions, and the possibility of redeployment are some of the unique issues servicemembers deal with. At a Military Friendly®, these specific struggles are recognized and respected to make Veterans feel more comfortable, supported, and understood.
Veterans can qualify for unique funding opportunities.
Military Friendly® schools might offer special tuition rates and other unique funding options for service members.
For example, Tulsa Welding School (TWS)—a proud member of the Military Friendly® family—recognizes GI Bill® Programs and offers Military Tuition Pricing.*
This funding support could also account for the scholarships and academic credits some Veterans lose due to extended deployment.
Tulsa Welding School is committed to supporting military Veterans.
Tulsa Welding School has a long-standing track record of helping military members make the transition from service to civilian life by providing an environment where Veterans are welcomed, supported, and guided.
If you’re interested in learning more about the opportunities offered by the skilled trades, read more about why these career paths are great for military members and their families.
*At this time, TWS Jacksonville is the only school Military Friendly approved.