The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown has been designated a 2010 “Military Friendly School” by G.I. Jobs. The designation is reserved for the top 15% of colleges, universities and trade schools in the United States that are reaching out to America’s veterans as students.
“We are very proud of our designation as a Military Friendly School,” commented Pitt-Johnstown President Jem Spectar. “We have tremendous respect and appreciation for our military veterans, who have given so selflessly of themselves in defending our freedom. This prestigious honor is shared by our entire campus community including our faculty, staff, students, alumni and, especially, our military veterans.”
In addition to providing benefits to student veterans such as on-campus veterans’ programs and credit for military service, criteria for making the Military Friendly Schools list include efforts and results in recruiting and retaining military and veteran students, and academic accreditations. The list was compiled through exhaustive research starting in May, during which G.I. Jobs polled more than 7,000 schools nationwide. Methodology, criteria, and weighting for the list were developed with the assistance of an Academic Advisory Committee consisting of educators and administrators from Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Toledo, Duquesne University, Coastline Community College, and Lincoln Technical Institute.
“This list is especially important now because the recently enacted Post-9/11 GI Bill has given veterans virtually unlimited financial means to go to school,” said Rich McCormack, G.I. Jobs publisher. “Veterans can now enroll in any school, provided they’re academically qualified. Veterans need a trusted friend to help them decide where to get educated. The Military Friendly Schools list is that trusted friend.”
In May, Pitt-Johnstown announced the creation of its MountainCat Veterans Program (MVP), which assists veterans in making a successful transition to college. The MVP offers benefits including accelerated admission review and application fee waivers, priority registration, deferred tuition payments, credit evaluation, a veterans’ support group, free on-campus parking, and single point-of-contact in administrative and student services departments. MVP participants are also provided with special membership identification cards designating them as a “Pitt-Johnstown MVP.”
The MVP, which is administered by Dr. Alan Teich, vice president for academic affairs, is a collaborative effort of many units across the campus that comprise the Veterans’ Support Council. Dr. Teich remarked, “Our military veterans have served their country with honor, and the MVP allows us the opportunity to honor that service.”
Pitt-Johnstown currently enrolls an average of 55 veterans per semester.
Founded in 1927, Pitt-Johnstown is the first and largest regional campus of the University of Pittsburgh. A vital knowledge center and a foremost contributor to the area’s educational, social, cultural, and economic environment, Pitt-Johnstown offers a high quality educational experience that is purposefully designed to prepare students for the real world of the 21st century.