Veteran Strategies for a Successful College Transition
11/21/12 10:51 AM
By Mike Lesczinski, Excelsior Life News Staff
Every year veterans make the decision to return to college to complete the degree they started years earlier or to begin for the first time. Excelsior alone is currently home to more than 4,000 veterans pursuing a diploma.
For these veterans, the transition from the battlefield to the classroom can bring mixed emotions.
“The thought of heading back to school for a degree can be exhilarating,” said Judy Reed, director of veterans services and outreach at Excelsior College. “At the same time, the prospect of needing to brush up on writing skills or find ways to manage your time can be just as unsettling.”
One of the most important factors in determining success in college, especially at a distance learning institution like Excelsior, is whether or not a veteran can become acclimated to the online environment and knowledgeable of the resources available to them.
With many veterans hesitant to seek out outreach from administrators or even professors, some colleges, including Excelsior, are looking into establishing mentorship programs to pair up veterans with others who have already gone through the academic process.
Excelsior’s program, available within their Online Veterans’ Center, is open to all veteran students returning to college. While veteran mentors can certainly help with the transition period, it can be just as important to lend an ear during times of need, says Reed.
The next installment in Excelsior’s “You’re Back – What’s Next” webinar series, scheduled for November 28 at 7 pm eastern, will focus on veteran strategies for college success, in particular the benefits of mentoring. It will feature experts from both Excelsior College and Marist College, as well as veteran students from each.