Choosing a “Military-Friendly” School
Many times, service members are leery of schools claiming to be “military-friendly” because these schools don't always hold up to their claim. Sometimes, veterans needing extra time off from class for surgery or recovery for battle-related wounds are not provided what was promised them. When it comes to finding a school that truly is “military-friendly,” there are a few points to keep in mind.
Speaking with other service members who have attended colleges is a great place to start. Ask them questions about their experiences at certain military-friendly schools. Then, talk to the schools themselves. Ask them what they do to hold up their name as a military-friendly school. Do they offer class extensions for classes already underway? Are there different learning tracks to choose from, i.e. 8-week intensive courses instead of 16-week courses? Find out what makes each school stand out as military-friendly.
Another great place to find information is by speaking with a military education counselor.
In an email to Decision Times, Bob Bothel, director of Voluntary Education for the Coast Guard, wrote, “I cannot overstate the importance of a service member working with their education services officer.” Talking with education counselors specifically educated in military education and knowledgeable of the specific needs of military students can clear up confusion and offer insight as to which colleges fit the specific needs of military members.
Not all schools are accredited colleges. Do research to ensure that the school for which you apply is recognized by the Education Department as an accredited college. Only accredited colleges are covered under the GI Bill. Also ensure that you meet the school's requirements or that you are able to attend based on a combination of other qualifications.
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