New Grants Will Help Veterans Get College Degree

NASHVILLE, TN (TSU News Service) — Tennessee State University will soon implement a new program that will allow veterans to count military training for credit hours when they enroll at the institution.   TSU plans to launch the new initiative this fall with a $69,200 grant from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission.

The program is part of the State of Tennessee’s Veteran Reconnect initiative.

“We owe a debt of gratitude to the men and women that have sacrificed so much for our nation’s freedom, and providing a seamless process for them to pursue their education, during and after their service, is just one of the many ways we can show our appreciation,” said Tennessee State University President Glenda Glover.

“TSU is a certified “Vets Campus” by THEC, and noted as a “Military Friendly” institution by G.I Jobs and several other notable ranking services for this area. We are proud to serve our veterans as they have proudly served us.”

TSU is among 14 Tennessee colleges and universities collectively receiving $889,277 from the Tennessee Higher Education Commission to support programs and services for student veterans at campuses across the state. Through the Veteran Reconnect Grant, THEC will also provide technical assistance to Veteran Reconnect campuses around prior learning assessments for veterans.

The Veteran Reconnect grants are focused on improving the assessment of prior learning for student veterans returning to college. Prior learning assessment (PLA) at colleges and universities examines a veteran’s prior military training and grants equivalent college credit for those skills attained during service. This results in a student veteran completing their postsecondary credential in an accelerated time frame.

“Earning college credit for military training can be the difference between a student applying to a school, or moving on to the next opportunity,” said THEC Executive Director Mike Krause. “When a veteran is able to use credit for their military training towards their college degree, they are more likely to persist and finish their program of study.”

Institutions receiving the grants will develop and implement improved evaluation processes for translating military training into academic credit, while also ensuring that prospective and incoming student veterans have easy, clear access to the information. Veteran Reconnect aligns with legislation passed last year by the Tennessee General Assembly which directs THEC to develop an online web platform to assist veterans in translating their military experience to academic credit. As part of that effort, institutions receiving grants will map out opportunities already available to students through their campuses.

Veteran Reconnect is part of Governor Bill Haslam’s Drive to 55 initiative to increase educational attainment in the state to 55 percent by the year 2025.

TSU was designated a certified veterans campus in November 2014. The university provides programs and support services to ease veterans’ transition from military service to college life, as well as give them opportunities to learn skills necessary for the workforce.

Fore more information about veteran services call 615-963-7001, or visit http://www.tnstate.edu/records/veteran/.

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