Joanna Norris, Associate Director Department of Public Relations (904) 620-2102
Department of Public Relations
The University of North Florida was named a “Military Friendly School” for 2012 by G.I. Jobs, the premier magazine for military personnel transitioning into civilian life. This honor ranks UNF in the top 20 percent of all colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members and veterans as students. This is the third consecutive year UNF has earned this ranking.
The Military Friendly Schools List provides military and veteran students a way to discern which schools offer them the most benefits. The 1,518 colleges, universities and trade schools on this year’s list prioritize the recruitment of students with military experience.
“These schools are making the grade by offering scholarships and discounts, veterans’ clubs, full-time staff, military credit and other services to those who served,” said Rich McCormack, G.I. Jobs publisher. “Veterans need a trusted friend to help them decide where to get educated and the Military Friendly Schools list is that trusted friend.”
The 2012 list of Military Friendly Schools ® was compiled through extensive research and a data-driven survey of more than 8,000 schools nationwide. Methodology, criteria and weighting for the list were developed with the assistance of an Academic Advisory Board consisting of educators from schools across the country. The website, found at www.militaryfriendlyschools.com, features the list, interactive tools and search functionality to assist military veterans with their school decisions.
In 2009, UNF established a Task Force and received a grant for more than $200,000 from the Florida Braive Fund at The Community Foundation in Jacksonville, which allowed the University to establish the Military and Veterans Resource Center (MVRC) on campus. The concept proved that the University could proactively support veteran’s education on campus by expanding its service capacity of the Counseling Center, Disability Resource Center and the Mental Health counseling support in the Brooks College of Health on campus. With renovated spaces, the Center opened its doors last August with 140 student veterans graduating last year.
The Center’s mission is to provide a broad range of student services and resources focused on the special needs of today’s military veterans, service members and their families in order to enhance their smooth transition from the military environment to campus life, leading to academic success, graduation and employment opportunities.
The MVRC intends to expand its outreach to include supporting the veteran who is getting ready to graduate with mentorships, internships and externships. The Center offers extended hours and is actively seeking additional scholarships, grants and employment opportunities to foster a mutually-beneficial partnership with the business community to increase networking and services for career exploration.
Additionally, UNF started offering the Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corp, an educational program of leadership and military skills training, on campus in 2009. The UNF program, called “The Fighting Osprey Company,” gives students a chance to get Army training while in college. The University also has students participating in the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps at Jacksonville University.
G.I. Jobs is published by Victory Media, a veteran-owned business, which also publishes The Guide to Military Friendly Schools, Military Spouse and Vetrepreneur magazines and annually rates the nation’s “Military Friendly Employers,” “Military Spouse Friendly Employers” and “Best Corporations for Veteran-Owned Businesses.”
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