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K-State Today

October 17, 2011

Educating the troops: K-State recognized for its dedication to serving military students

Submitted by Communications and Marketing

Kansas State University's long history of working with military students has been recognized for the third time by G.I. Jobs magazine. The publication, which caters to those transitioning out of the military, has again named K-State as one of the nation's top military-friendly universities.

The university was nominated by the Division of Continuing Education, which offers information, assistance and distance programming to students, including military members and their families. Ruth Stanley, a continuing education adviser for military students, said the division decided to nominate K-State because of its constant outreach to the military, both locally and overseas.

"We get calls from all over the world -- like Afghanistan to Iraq -- from soldiers wanting to take distance education classes, and we go overboard to help them make sure they get everything they need," Stanley said. "Often soldiers getting out of the military opt to stay in Manhattan, no matter where they're from, because they enjoy the atmosphere and the fact that we understand them."

According to G.I. Jobs, K-State was chosen as a top military-friendly school because of its strong commitment to educate service members through distance education, evening college, on-campus learning or through nearby military installations like Fort Riley and Fort Leavenworth.

The university's award-winning distance education programs include 17 certificates, nine bachelor's degrees, 21 master's degrees and one doctoral degree. A veterans affairs office is available on the Manhattan campus, and a K-State Extension office is available at Fort Riley.

The Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts program provides up to $4,000, over two years, of financial assistance for military spouses who are pursuing eligible degree programs, licenses or credentials leading to employment in portable career fields. Other military-related scholarships include the Horatio Alger Military Veterans Scholarships and the Huebner Scholarships, among others.

Stanley said evening college is set up in eight-week classes at K-State so that military personnel can see eight weeks out if they are being deployed. In addition, K-State's policy is that active-duty or reserve military students who are being deployed can be dropped from their classes with a 100-percent refund no matter where they are in the semester. They can then return to school without penalty. In-state tuition is also offered to any soldier stationed in Kansas or their family members, Stanley said.

"It's great when a soldier is in Afghanistan trying to finish his or her degree," she said. "When they're here, we give them tickets to athletic events and recognize them during the Fort Riley Day football game. We want them to feel like they're part of K-State and let them know that we care about them."

Military personnel who are enrolled full-time make up 2 percent of K-State's enrollment, while 4 percent of the enrollment is part-time military personnel.

K-State has also been recognized for four years in a row by the journal Military Advanced Education for its work with the military.