December 19, 2013 | 11:22 a.m.
By Nicole Finsaas ’13
Bethel University has been ranked #7 on “Best Colleges for Veterans” by U.S. News & World Report and was named a “Military Friendly School” by Victory Media. The recognitions highlight Bethel’s ongoing commitment to providing resources and benefits for veterans.
The Victory Media honor this fall was based on Bethel’s availability of military specific scholarships, academic credit for vocational military training, the veteran resource center, fair deployment policies, accelerated learning models, online learning, and access to counseling. Just two months later, Bethel was named #7 on U.S. News’Midwest Regional Universities “Best Colleges for Veterans.” “It’s a mutually beneficial relationship,” says Josh Daubenmeyer, about having military members and veterans on campus and in the classroom. Daubenmeyer is the veteran center supervisor at Bethel and is currently in the Navy Reserves. “Both military and non-military students benefit from the diversity of each other’s experience.”
Senior recruiter Chris Jolin is a veteran and enrollment counselor. Along with Daubenmeyer, the two are advocates and guides for Bethel students who are veterans or on active duty. Daubenmeyer and Jolin play an active role in making Bethel military friendly. “Being military friendly actually involves policies and actions that an institution takes to help them serve veterans… Being military friendly is doing the right things,” says Jolin.
In the past few years, Bethel has taken big steps to serve military service members. In 2010, Bethel became a certified Yellow Ribbon school. The Yellow Ribbon designation ensures that every veteran will be able to use their GI Bill benefit, that Bethel will give veterans tuition benefits beyond the GI Bill, and that the Veterans Association will match Bethel’s benefits. Bethel is also a part of the Servicemembers Opportunity College (SOC) Consortium. Among other things, this marks Bethel as a school that is trying to understand and respond to special needs of military personnel, advocating flexibility for military members’ education programs, and working to strengthen relationships between military students and higher education representatives, according to the SOC website.