NVU provides an array of services on campus for veterans


Gunter Kleist

Tammy Carter

According to the department of Veterans affairs, over 1 million vets or their family members are attending college on the post-9/11 G.I. bill.

The G.I. bill was adopted in 2008, following the war in Afghanistan. This benefit not only pays 100 percent of tuition costs for the student soldier, but it also provides a cost of living benefit to help the veteran attend college without having to worry about a full-time job to pay the bills.

Veteran undergraduates make up four percent of the student body nationwide, and often attend multiple universities while earning degrees. Most of these veterans are 24 or older.

Northern Vermont University is no stranger to military students. This semester alone, over 40 people were certified to attend the college on the post 9/11 G.I. bill through Tammy Carter, the Johnson campus Veterans Affairs officer. Many of these veterans were awarded prior-learning assessment credits before they even stepped foot in the classroom. These credits are based on skills and training that the veteran received during his or her time in service. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, a student entering college with PLA credits is usually enrolled with an average of 28 credits, making them a sophomore as soon as they start their college journey.

Since the G.I. Bill is also transferable to a Veterans’ spouse or family member, an accurate count of just how many veterans are on campus at NVU at any given time is difficult to find.

“Out of 40, only about 12 of these were actual vets,” said Carter. These statistics show that many veterans have transferred their benefits over to family members instead of using these benefits themselves.

“This also includes online and distance learning students,” she added.

Despite the difficulty in finding out how many veterans attend the university, Northern Vermont University bills itself as a Veteran friendly campus.

An exclusive Veteran lounge, a full time Veterans official on staff, and a Veteran’s day dinner are all available to the student Veteran.

“Nov. 10 will be the fourth year of our Veterans Day dinner held at the Hyde Park VFW, and this year it was upgraded to a dance as well,” said Carter.

NVU also waves all application fees to veterans who wish to apply to the school and provides personal and academic counseling to its veteran students according to its website.

The veteran-friendly atmosphere at NVU has not gone unrecognized. NVU- Johnson has been labeled a Designated College by Victory Media on its military-friendly school list, while NVU- Lyndon has achieved a No. 1 ranking on the same list.

Justin Segale, a Marine veteran, is not only a full-time student but an employee of NVU- Johnson as well. In 2014, he began working part-time in the public safety department after finding the campus veteran-friendly. Although he has sometimes used the veteran’s lounge for a quick rest when he has worked double shifts, he has yet to attend the Veteran’s Day dinner.

When discussing other veterans on campus Segale couldn’t list any current students he knew that were vets but did recall one older gentleman that lived in town and attended classes. Despite a lack of interaction with other veteran’s, Segale praised NVU’s commitment to being Veteran friendly.

“Our vet resources officer is top notch. As far as vet issues on campus, she stands out. Tammy has our back,” Segale said.