Online education gets increasingly popular in the US. Working professionals, single parents, and individuals who find it difficult to study based on the full-time schedules are turning to online colleges for higher degrees or advanced skills. We consider them as major “purchasers” of online education. However, according to a recent survey, the number of military servicemembers and veterans that enroll into online colleges is significantly increased as well.
Well, this balloon is easy to understand. Many factors contribute to the popularity of online learning among active servicemembers and veterans who are seeking higher education opportunities to enhance their career prospects. Listed below are three major reasons, in my opinion, that account for the growth of online military students.
1. Flexibility – As we know, military servicemembers and veterans are more subject to various obligations, making it hard for them to learn at brick-and-mortar schools like full-time students, which, however, sets off the flexibility and convenience of online colleges and programs.
Most online colleges allow students to learn at their own schedules. That is – you, the learner, determine when and where to take classes, home, coffee bar, office…You just need to complete the required credits in order to earn a degree or diploma, and there is typically no requirement on when you should complete the program, while such kind of flexibility and freedom is just totally impossible for traditional education.
2. Tuition Discounts – Today, many online colleges and universities, in order to attract military learners, offer tantalizing tuition discounts or assistance to help cut down the cost. Since online education is usually less costly than campus-based courses, plus the military discounts and other benefits, your earning of an online degree would be cost-effective.
3. Confidence for Employment – To some extent, when you are discharged from active service and come back into the society, you may feel somewhat isolated and unable to keep pace with this ever-changing world. With online education, you could get updated with the latest knowledge and skills in your interested area just through your PC, enhancing your confidence and constructing your educational stock needed for your career goals.
Today you can find a good number of online military-friendly colleges in our country. Most of them advertise that they provide awesome military benefits and assistance for active servicemembers and veterans. However, no matter how tempting the educational and tuition benefits are, you must make sure the online college or degree program you choose is accredited by reorganized accrediting agencies, which guarantees that your degree would be acceptable in your future workplace.
To pave your way to a worthwhile online degree, I recommend three accredited, military-friendly colleges in the US that offer online degree programs with educational benefits for servicemembers and veterans.
Colorado Technical University
Colorado Technical University, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. It is also a member of the Council for Higher Education Accreditation. So at CTU, you are ensured high quality education and well-designed curriculum.
For online military students and their spouses, CTU’s Department of Military Education provides dedicated services and assistance throughout their entire academic experience. This Department consists of a group of well-trained specialists who understand your military life and your possible needs. They are:
• Military Education Benefits Specialists – Help you get the maximum educational benefits that you could qualify for, such as Military Tuition Assistance, various GI Bill benefits, Veterans Affairs Educational Benefits, etc.
• Prior Learning Assessment Advisors – Help you receive credits for all previous courses and military experience, which are eligible to transfer into CTU online degree program of your choice.
• Specialized Military Admissions Advisors – Help you with the enrollment into online degree program based on their specific knowledge on military protocols and procedures.
• Student Advising Teams – Help you with the adaption and transition to the academic environment online of CTU.
As long as you enroll into a CTU’s online degree program, you will be considered full-time students, receiving the same education as that of campus-based students.
Besides, all online degree programs at CTU are accelerated, and each course lasts five and a half weeks. In addition, there is no extended break between quarters, so you can complete the program even faster.
Western Governors University
Western Governors University receives both national and regional accreditation. It is nationally accredited by the Distance Education and Training Council and regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
As for the online education for military veterans, WGU has been ranked among the “Top Military-Friendly Colleges and Universities” in the US for 5 consecutive years.
The online degree programs are all approved for Veterans Administration Education Benefits under the Montgomery GI Bill. Since Western Governors University’s online education tuition rates are quite modest, as a veteran, you may be eligible for the benefits that are more than your total costs.
Meanwhile, WGU’s competency-based degree programs are approved for the Tuition Assistance program for active servicemembers, reserve and National Guard members. Moreover, WGU provides an array of scholarships particularly designed for active servicemembers, military veterans, and their spouses.
Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, Walden University also has a long and proud history of providing quality online education to men and women in armed forces. More than 1,700 military veterans and active servicemembers have chosen Walden for distance learning. Recently, Walden was horned among GI Jobs’ 2011 list of Military Friendly Schools.
Walden’s online degree programs are approved by the Department of Veterans Affairs, along with 10% tuition reduction for active servicemembers, military veterans, as well as employees in the Department of VA. Additionally, students from the armed forces can also enjoy a variety of educational benefits, like Tuition Assistance, the Montgomery GI Bill, and the Yellow Ribbon Enhancement Program.
Plus, as a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges Consortium, Walden allows you to transfer eligible credits from other educational institutions into your online degree program.
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