Veteran leadership

 

The University of Indianapolis continues to improve its services for veterans who choose to pursue higher education following their military service.

Last year, UIndy introduced the Freedom Award, which, combined with federal grants and VA benefits, allows veterans to attend college tuition-free. And this past fall, UIndy was designated a “Military Friendly School.”

Helping to ease the transition from the armed services to college

In addition to creating the tuition award, UIndy recently received a grant to aid development of campus programs that help veterans adjust to being college students.

Currently, more than 50 veterans attend classes at UIndy, either as undergraduate, graduate, or School for Adult Learning students.

UIndy’s efforts include:

  • creating a veterans’ student organization. The fledgling organization has about 30 students and is UIndy’s first student organization to include all divisions of students (undergraduate, graduate, and adult).
  • developing a campus support system. UIndy has identified an “Advocates Corps” of nearly 20 faculty and staff with military experience who have volunteered to serve as a point of contact for veterans, acting as mentors and providing support.
  • educating faculty and staff on veterans issues. Informational sessions have featured experts discussing military issues, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, transitioning to student life and classroom behaviors, and first-person accounts of issues from veterans.
  • developing orientation programs. UIndy is working to create orientation programs when veterans enroll to support them in their transition to academic life.
  • recognizing veterans on campus. Campus-wide recognition programs, such as handing out pins to veterans on Veterans Day, are in the works as ways to raise the profile of veterans on campus and thank them for their service.
  • enlisting the help of a veteran student. UIndy has received funds from the VA to create a work-study position to employ a veteran student part-time to advocate for veterans on campus.