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SUNY Fredonia again top military-friendly school in national ranking
Tuesday, September 17, 2013

For the second year in a row, SUNY Fredonia has been designated a leading military-friendly school by Victory Media, an organization that assists military personnel transitioning into civilian life. Only the top 20 percent of U.S. colleges, universities and trade schools were named to Victory Media’s 2014 Military Friendly Schools national listing.

“I was very pleased to find that SUNY Fredonia was again awarded this designation since the screening process this year was far more rigorous than last. It really is a reflection of the great level of support provided to veterans, service members and their families across campus,” said Benjamin Hartung, Veterans Affairs administrator at SUNY Fredonia.

The listing, now in its fifth year, ranks educational institutions that are doing the most to assist service members, veterans and spouses as students and ensure their success on campus. Approximately 25 percent of SUNY’s 64 campuses were placed on the 2014 register that includes 1,686 schools.

“There is undoubtedly a consistent and sincere commitment at SUNY Fredonia to really do everything possible to take care of our student veterans and honor the unique sacrifices that they have made serving our country,” Hartung said.

Veterans Affairs Office work study students Mark Mackey and Lori Dispenza deserve special recognition for their contributions toward receiving this honor, Hartung noted. “They are both Army combat veterans and have really done an exceptional job in assisting our veterans’ transition from the military to college life.”

“SUNY Fredonia makes a concerted effort to put programming in place that really looks to make the transition from military to college life as seamless as possible,” Hartung said. Work is underway to create a new lounge for these students to study, socialize and relax on campus. The lounge is expected to be ready for use at the start of the spring 2014 semester.

Currently, 64 SUNY Fredonia students receive veterans’ educational entitlements, nearly twice the number in 2006, when 38 students were enrolled. About half of today’s students are veterans or service members; the remaining students are dependents of disabled or deceased veterans. Computer Science, Education, History and Social Work are top choices for majors among these students.

The 2014 Military Friendly list was compiled through extensive research and a data-driven survey of more than 10,000 colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide approved for VA tuition funding. Each year schools taking the survey are held to a higher standard than the previous year via improved methodology, criteria and weightings developed with the assistance of an Academic Advisory Board consisting of educators from across the country.

“Inclusion on the 2014 list of Military Friendly Schools shows SUNY Fredonia’s commitment to providing a supportive environment for military students,” said Sean Collins, Victory Media vice president and a nine-year U.S. Navy veteran. “The need for education is growing and our mission is to provide the military community with transparent, world-class resources to assist in their search for schools.” 

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