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A Word From Our Dean

by Dr. Carmen Burkhalter, Dean

Military

It seems fitting that as we move into the Holiday Season, we appreciate our military.  Currently, UNA has over 300 veterans, military dependents, active-duty, National Guard, and Reserve members attending as undergraduate or graduate students. Nationally, it is estimated that by the year 2020, over 1.2 million veterans will be eligible to use their GI Bill to further their education.  What does this mean for UNA?  Before delving into the realities of military and veterans in college, let’s acknowledge the geographical disproportion of military service.  The “south” makes up 34% of the US population but veterans from Southern states make up 44% of the recruits.  Interpretation suggests that universities in the south, such as UNA, have an imperative to create a positive military/veteran climate.  We must do everything we can to enhance the cultural transition back home.  This means universities supporting advisors who are knowledgeable about tuition assistance, counseling, student health, career counseling, disability services, retention efforts just to name a few. 

Academically, it also means evaluating the curricular programs to make sure they are in alignment with the needs of the military so that the students in active duty will be able to advance in their career.  It furthers means that we must develop multiple delivery modalities so that students can start or continue their education regardless of deployment.  We must commit to going the extra mile and evaluating previous courses or experience to maximize credit. 

 

I am pleased that UNA has created a Military and Veteran Service Center.  This Center serves as a streamlined veteran-specific resource center.  Ms. Michelle Salgado Dailey is our Veteran Affairs Specialist.  If you or someone you know with military affiliation wants more information about continuing their education, please contact Ms. Dailey at mdailey2@una.edu.

 

Have a great 2019.

 

Dr. Burkhalter