For the third year in a row, Davis & Elkins College has been named to the Military-Friendly School list by Victory Media, the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life.
The 2013 Military Friendly Schools list honors the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America's military service members, veterans and spouses as students and ensure their success on campus. D&E was chosen from institutions of all types and sizes, both public and private.
"We are extremely proud to be included in this listing for a significant third year," said Debbie Larkin, associate registrar, veterans liaison officer and Veterans Administration school certifying official at D&E. "The college is grateful to veterans for their service to our country and is committed to providing everything they need to obtain a college education. Military veterans represent an important and diverse demographic of the D&E student body."
Veterans are an important and proud constituency at Davis & Elkins College. Student members of the color guard take part in this year’s matriculation ceremony. From back to front are Sgt. Bradley Bennett of the U.S. Army Reserve; Master Sgt. Mark Lanham, U.S. Marine Corps, retired; and Spc. Laura Howes of the West Virginia Army National Guard.
"Inclusion on the 2013 list of Military Friendly Schools shows D&E's commitment to providing a supportive environment for military students," said Sean Collins, vice president of Victory Media. "As interest in education grows, we're thrilled to provide the military community with transparent, world-class resources to assist in their search for schools."
Among the academic services at D&E specifically cited were awarding credit for military training and accepting transfer credits. Special soldier and veterans support services cited were: a staff trained in military needs, a student veterans organization with a veterans center and a liberal withdrawal policy to accommodate deployments or relocation that can interrupt a semester. The college also provides financial support by providing military scholarships and fee waivers.
"Our Student Veterans Association has also been very active, both on campus and off," Larkin said. "They provide classroom presentations, participate in Veterans Day ceremonies, collect donations for care packages sent to troops and provide valuable assistance and insight as we design programs at the college that will best serve our military students."
Recently the college created a Veterans Lounge in historic Halliehurst, complete with resource materials, computers and printer provided by the D&E Veterans Upward Bound program. This federal program, located on the D&E campus, also provides valuable assistance to soldiers and veterans pursuing higher education.
"We also provide a specialized veteran ID card and encourage faculty and staff connections with student veterans," she noted.
In collaboration with West Virginia University, D&E hosted two members of the Center for Deployment Psychology this summer at the University Counseling Center Core Competency Program in Morgantown. It was presented to educators and psychological professionals and addressed cultural and clinical concerns for student veterans.
"We are very active and plan to make connections even stronger with the Veterans Administration," Larkin said. "We'll continue to pursue additional veterans-specific ways to show our appreciation and provide support for these soldiers."
More information is available at www.dewv.edu or 304-637-1243.