Lamar University recognized as military-friendly school
Lamar University was recently added to the 2013 list of military-friendly schools by G.I. Jobs magazine. The military-friendly school designation places Lamar in the top 15 percent of all colleges, universities and trade schools nationwide that have successfully integrated service members into their campus and online offerings.
“We are excited to announce that Lamar University is currently reaching out to more military service members than ever before,” said Ashley Sheehan, LU coordinator of military programs.
Sheehan said that significant behind-the-scenes effort went into implementing the process to initiate military recruitment and comply with tuition assistance programs.
“In 2009, we started to see a trend of service members wanting to come to Lamar,” said Willie Broussard, LU associate director of academic partnerships. “Many of them had tuition assistance to pay for their education, but we didn’t have the proper processes in place to be able to accept the tuition assistance from the government.”
“There are many rules and regulations the military has placed on those using tuition assistance,” said Sheehan. “So, it was important for us to figure out what they were and to make sure we were in compliance with them so that our military students would continue to get financial assistance.”
Financial assistance is open to active service members only. Service members can take advantage of online courses or face-to-face classes offered at Lamar.
“When we say ‘active’ we mean Reserve and National Guard as well,” said Sheehan. “As long as they are currently serving in some capacity, they qualify. If they’re getting tuition assistance they’re eligible for the discounts Lamar has agreed to give them on tuition, which is significant. It makes their education much more affordable.”
“Our reputation at Lamar has always been a quality education at an affordable price, even before we entered into the military market,” said Broussard. “I think that by us providing this for the military service members it gives them the opportunity to take advantage of the quality education we provide.”
Sheehan said that the current population of military students Lamar is currently serving is not too large, but growth is expected because she is readily available and willing to help the service members as much as possible.
“Our office can assist the enrollment process by being the liaison between their various academic departments and the financial aid office,” said Sheehan. “Whatever they need help with, I’m here.”