KALAMAZOO—Western Michigan University begins 2013 with its third consecutive designation as one of the nation's best institutions for military veterans pursuing higher education.
Military Times Edge magazine has placed WMU on its 2013 "Best for Vets" list of colleges and universities. With a ranking of No. 49 among the 650 schools rated, WMU is the only Michigan four-year school on the publication's list of the top colleges in the United States.
This is WMU's third such ranking by the monthly publication, which is a supplement to the widely distributed Military Times publications—Army Times, Navy Times, Air Force Times and Marine Corps Times. Each year, the magazine invites the nation's colleges and universities to report on their programs, policies and resources for veterans. The top schools, called "Best for Vets," are then ranked.
Also in December, the University learned that it is once again on the list of "military friendly" schools compiled by the publication Military Advanced Education. And earlier this year, G.I. Jobs magazine included WMU among its top 15 percent of colleges for vets.
"We are proud of these designations," says WMU President John M. Dunn. "Our faculty and staff have worked very hard to make our University a veteran-friendly campus."
The latest designations come on the heels of new services for vets on the WMU campus. In April, U.S. Rep. Fred Upton announced vets would be able to tap an array of new services to help them succeed, thanks to a decision by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to locate a VetSuccess on Campus program in southwest Michigan. WMU partnered with Kalamazoo Valley Community College and Kellogg Community College to secure the first such VA program in Michigan.
Other WMU programs and services for veterans
- A mini GI bill in place since 2007 to cover tuition for an initial semester of enrollment, making it easy for a vet to transition quickly from active service to student life
- A residency policy that recognizes veterans and their families as Michigan residents
- An active campus veterans association
- A special advocacy office aimed at helping veterans and active-duty national guard members transition in and out of academic life