TROY-Troy University is among the top 25 universities in the South when it comes to helping active duty military and veterans pursue a college education, according to U.S. News and World Report.
The new rankings provide information on schools that offer federal benefits, including tuition and housing assistance, to veterans and active service members, and to qualify for the rankings, the schools had to be certified for the GI Bill and participate in the Yellow Ribbon Program and Servicemembers Opportunities Colleges Consortium.
"We work every day to support the academic success of our military students," said Dave Barron, Associate Vice Chancellor for Military Affairs. "It is an effort we are pledged to do, and are undertaking new initiatives to enhance our service to military affiliated students."
Initiatives such as having a VetSuccess on Campus counselor on staff, hosting a student veterans association and planning for a future veterans alumni chapter are helping military students navigate the university landscape, Barron said.
Among the factors behind TROY's ranking is a favorable graduation rate, faculty resources, reputation and other markers of the academic quality. In all, 234 schools were ranked in 10 U.S. News ranking categories.
The University's affiliation with the military is rooted in a 1950's distance learning program begun at the U.S. Army's Fort Rucker. Today, TROY offers programs online to American military members, veterans, dependents and conducts classes on or near 30 military installations both in the U.S. and abroad. Its TROY for Troops Center, inaugurated earlier this year, serves as a one-stop service center for military affiliated students. Through the Center, TROY participates in programs beyond the formal programs the rankings considered, such as Got Your Six and SALUTE Veterans National Honor Society. In 2013, the University became the first in the country to be named a "Purple Heart University."